United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina

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Eastern District of North Carolina
Fourth Circuit
Judges: 3
Posts: 4
Vacancies: 1
Active judges
Chief: James Dever
Senior Judges
Magistrate Judges
Former Judges
(Numbers indicate % of seats vacant.)
More than 40%

The United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina is one of ninety-four United States district courts. When decisions of the court are appealed, they are appealed to the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals based in downtown Richmond, Virginia, at the Lewis F. Powell Federal Courthouse.

The United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina represents the United States in civil and criminal litigation in the court. The current district attorney is Thomas G. Walker.[1]

Vacancy warning level

The United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina's vacancy warning level is yellow. The court currently has one vacancy.

Pending nominations

Jennifer May-ParkerSUNY Geneseo, B.A., 1988SUNY Buffalo Law, J.D. 1991

Active judges

Article III judges

JudgeBornHomeAppointed byActiveChiefPreceededBachelorsLaw
Judge Louise Flanagan1962Richmond, VAW. Bush 07/18/2003 - Present2004 - 2011James FoxWake Forest U., B.A., 1984University of Virginia Law, J.D., 1988
Judge Terrence Boyle1945Passaic, NJReagan 05/03/1984 - Present1997 - 2004Franklin DupreeBrown, B.A., 1967American U. Law, J.D., 1970
Chief Judge James Dever1962Lake Charles, LAW. Bush 05/02/2005 - Present2011 - PresentEarl BrittNotre Dame, B.B.A., 1984Duke U. Law, J.D., 1987

Senior judges

JudgeAppointed byActiveChiefSeniorBachelorsLaw
Senior Judge Earl BrittCarter 05/23/1980 - 12/06/19971983 - 199012/07/1997 - PresentWake Forest U., B.S., 1956Wake Forest Law, LL.B., 1958
Senior Judge James FoxReagan 9/30/1982-1/30/20011990-19971/31/2001-PresentUniversity of North Carolina, 1950University of North Carolina Law, 1957
Senior Judge Malcolm HowardReagan 02/26/1998 - 12/30/200512/31/2005 - PresentU.S. Military Academy, West Point, B.S., 1962Wake Forest Law, J.D., 1970

Magistrate judges

Magistrate Judge James Gates01/27/2006 - Present
Magistrate Judge Robert Jones, Jr.10/12/2007 - Present
Magistrate Judge Kimberly A. Swank9/10/2013 - PresentEast Carolina UniversityCampbell University


The Counties of the Eastern District of North Carolina (click for larger map)

The Western District of North Carolina has original jurisdiction over cases filed within its jurisdiction. These cases can include civil and criminal matters that fall under federal law.

It has three staffed offices and holds court in six cities: Elizabeth City, Fayetteville, Greenville, New Bern, Raleigh, and Wilmington. Its main office is in Raleigh.

There are four court divisions, each covering the following counties:

The Eastern Division, covering Beaufort, Carteret, Craven, Edgecombe, Greene, Halifax, Hyde, Jones, Lenoir, Martin, Pamlico, and Pitt counties.

The Northern Division, covering Bertie, Camden, Chowan, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Hertford, Northampton, Pasquotank, Perquimans, Tyrrell, and Washington counties.

The Southern Division, covering Bladen, Brunswick, Columbus, Duplin, New Hanover, Onslow, Pender, Robeson, and Sampson counties.

The Western Division, covering Cumberland, Franklin, Granville, Harnett, Johnston, Nash, Vance, Wake, Wayne, Warren, and Wilson counties.




Federal Court Caseload Statistics*
YearStarting case load:Cases filed:Total cases:Cases terminated:Remaining cases:Median time(Criminal)**:Median time(Civil)**:3 Year Civil cases#:Vacant posts:## Trials/Post
2013 3077296660433117 29269.48.4298 (13.8%)1250
2012 2729316358922806 308698.9257 (11.7%)1259
2011 2706267453802582 27988.38.6237 (12.6%)1231
2010 2392253649282200 27288.38.6154 (8.7%)1229
2009 2113235244652072 239388.795 (6%)1240
2008 1970222941992074 212588.888 (6.1%)1231
2007183621944030221218188.610.383 (6.7%)1226
*All statistics are taken from the Official Federal Courts' Website and reflect the calendar year through September.    **Time in months from filing to completion.
#This statistic includes cases which have been appealed in higher courts.    ##This is the total number of months that any judicial posts had spent vacant that year.

Notable cases

For a searchable list of opinions, please see Opinions of the Eastern District of North Carolina.


The District of North Carolina was established by Congress on June 4, 1790, with one post to cover the entire state. On June 4, 1872, Congress divided the district into the Eastern District of North Carolina and the Western District of North Carolina, with one post for each district. On March 2, 1927, Congress split the Middle District of North Carolina off from the existing districts. Over time, Congress added three posts to the Eastern District of North Carolina to reach the current total of four posts.[6]

Judicial posts

The following table highlights the development of judicial posts for the Western District of North Carolina:[6]

Year Statute Total Seats
June 4, 1790 1 Stat. 126 1 (Whole state)
June 4, 1872 17 Stat. 215 1
May 19, 1961 75 Stat. 80 2
June 2, 1970 84 Stat. 294 3 (1 Temporary)
1975 Post expired 2
October 20, 1978 92 Stat. 1629 3
July 10, 1984 98 Stat. 333 4(1 Temporary)
December 1, 1990 104 Stat. 5089 4

Former chief judges

In order to qualify for the office of chief judge in one of the federal courts, a judge must have been in active service on the court for at least one year, be under the age of 65, and have not previously served as chief judge. A vacancy in the office of chief judge is filled by the judge highest in seniority among the group of qualified judges. The chief judge serves for a term of seven years or until age 70, whichever occurs first. The age restrictions are waived if no members of the court would otherwise be qualified for the position. Unlike the Chief Justice of the United States, a chief judge returns to active service after the expiration of his or her term and does not create a vacancy on the bench by the fact of his or her promotion.[7][8]

Former judges

For information about judges of the Eastern District of North Carolina, see former federal judges of the Eastern District of North Carolina.

Federal courthouse

There are six federal courthouses that serve the Eastern District of North Carolina.

See also

External links


North CarolinaSupreme Court of North CarolinaNorth Carolina Court of AppealsNorth Carolina Superior CourtsNorth Carolina District CourtsUnited States District Court for the Eastern District of North CarolinaUnited States District Court for the Middle District of North CarolinaUnited States District Court for the Western District of North CarolinaUnited States Court of Appeals for the Fourth CircuitNorth Carolina countiesNorth Carolina judicial newsNorth Carolina judicial electionsJudicial selection in North CarolinaNorthCarolinaTemplatewithoutBankruptcy.jpg