About the Program
The Minnesota Court of Appeals
opens up the courtroom doors as an educational opportunity for teachers and students to observe oral arguments and meet with the judges. The court hears cases at the Minnesota Judicial Center in St. Paul, and in various courthouses across the state.
The court invites you to come to the courthouse and learn more about the court and its judges.
To submit an inquiry about participating in the program, please use the contact form
At the Minnesota Judicial Center
The MInnesota Judicial Center in St. Paul is home to the MInnesota Court of Appeals. The court hears arguments year round in courtrooms 100 and 200, which each seat approximately 20 visitors. Overflow viewing via a display monitor is also available in a nearby conference room.
The Minnesota Judicial Center is next door to the State Capitol, and within walking distance to the Minnesota History Center. A visit to the Judicial Center could easily be paired with a visit to either location.
In Greater Minnesota
The Court of Appeals hears cases in district court courtrooms in Greater Minnesota during the months of April through November. Hearing locations regularly include, as needed:
- Rochester, Owatonna, New Ulm – Thursday of first full week of each month
- Duluth – Thursday of second full week of each month
- Moorhead, St. Cloud – Thursday of third full week of each month
- Brainerd – Wednesday of first full week of each month
- Marshall – Wednesday or Thursday of first full week of each month
The court travels to other locations as needed.
In preparation for a visit to the courtroom, teachers and students will be provided with an informational brochure, “A Guide to Oral Arguments at the Minnesota Court of Appeals”; links to biographies of the judges on the panel; and the written arguments, called briefs, for each case.
Following the oral arguments, the panel of three judges will visit with students in courtroom.
Available seating will be limited, depending on the location of the hearings. Teachers and students may be required to go through a security screening before entering some courthouses. Electronic devices must be turned off while visitors are in the courtroom.
Oral arguments are timed, and last 35 minutes. The Court of Appeals typically hears oral arguments in 3-6 cases in a row. Each group participating in the program will have the opportunity to observe one or more oral arguments. Participants should plan for a visit of approximately 2 hours.
The Court of Appeals is not able to provide transportation to and from the courthouse.