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Supreme Court of Hawaii

Hawaii Supreme Court
Seal of the Hawaii Supreme Court
Established 1841
Country Hawaii 23x15px,
United States 23x15px
Location Honolulu, Hawaii
Composition method Governor nomination with Senate confirmation
Authorized by Haw. Const. art. VI, § 2.
Decisions are appealed to Supreme Court of the United States
Judge term length 10 years
Number of positions 5
Website Hawaii Supreme Court
Chief Justice
Currently Mark E. Recktenwald
Since September 14, 2010
Lead position ends September 13, 2020
File:Aliiolani Hale 2011 by D Ramey Logan.jpg
Aliʻiōlani Hale, the building where the Hawaiʻi State Supreme Court meets
Hawai'i State Judiciary

Supreme Court
Intermediate Appeals Court
Circuit Courts
District Courts
Family Courts
Tax Appeal Court
Land Court

The Supreme Court of Hawaii is the highest court of the State of Hawaii in the United States. Its decisions are binding on all other courts of the Hawaii State Judiciary. The principal purpose of the Supreme Court is to review the decisions of the trial courts in which appeals have been granted. Appeals are decided by the members of the Supreme Court based on written records and in some cases may grant oral arguments in the main Supreme Court chamber. Like its mainland United States counterparts, the Supreme Court does not take evidence and uses only evidence provided in previous trials.

The court meets in Aliʻiōlani Hale in Honolulu.


The Hawaii State Supreme Court has original jurisdiction to answer questions of law that have been passed to it from trial courts or the federal court, hear civil cases submitted to the Supreme Court on agreed statements of facts, and decide questions coming from proceedings of writs of mandamus, prohibition and habeas corpus.[1]


The Supreme Court consists of five justices[2][3] who are initially appointed to ten-year terms by the Governor of Hawaii, who makes his or her nomination from a list of four to six candidates from the Hawaii Judicial Selection Commission.[4] The Governor's nominee is subject to confirmation by the Hawaii State Senate.[5] Candidates must be U.S. citizens, Hawaii residents, and have been licensed to practice law for at least 10 years prior to nomination.[6] The Judicial Selection Commission can opt to retain incumbent justices for additional ten-year terms.[7] All justices must retire at 70 years of age.[8]

As of December 18, 2014, the five Justices are:[9]

Title Name Served on court since Current term
Chief Justice Recktenwald, Mark E.Mark E. Recktenwald May 11, 2009 September 14, 2010 - September 13, 2020
Justice Nakayama, Paula A.Paula A. Nakayama April 22, 1993 April 22, 2013 - April 21, 2023
Justice McKenna, SabrinaSabrina McKenna March 3, 2011 March 3, 2011 - March 2, 2021
Justice Pollack, Richard W.Richard W. Pollack August 6, 2012 August 6, 2012 - August 5, 2022
Justice Wilson, Michael D.Michael D. Wilson April 17, 2014 April 17, 2014 - April 16, 2024

See also


  1. ^ Haw. Rev. Stat. § 602-5. Retrieved 2014 December 18.
  2. ^ Haw. Const. art. VI, § 2. Retrieved 2014 December 18.
  3. ^ Haw. Rev. Stat. § 602-1. Retrieved 2014 December 18.
  4. ^ Haw. Const. art. VI, § 3. Retrieved 2014 December 18.
  5. ^ Id.
  6. ^ Id.
  7. ^ Id.
  8. ^ Id.
  9. ^ Hawaii Supreme Court Justices, Hawaii State Judiciary. Retrieved 2014 December 18.

External links

Coordinates: 21°18′20″N 157°51′36″W / 21.305478°N 157.859974°W / 21.305478; -157.859974{{#coordinates:21.305478|N|157.859974|W|type:landmark_region:US|||| |primary |name= }}