Judicial Information

Judge McBride is one of six judges on the bench of the Chattahoochee Judicial Circuit which includes Chattahoochee, Harris, Marion, Muscogee, Talbot and Taylor counties in west central Georgia.

Each county in Georgia belongs to a judicial circuit in which Superior Courts courts are organized and administered. At present, Georgia has forty-nine circuits.

Since 1777, Georgia's Superior Courts have served our citizens. The Superior Court system was organized shortly after outbreak of the American Revolution and added circuits, including the Chattahoochee Circuit in which Judge McBride serves, as Georgia expanded westward following the first and second Treaties of Indian Springs. Our Superior Courts have functioned continuously and served Georgia's citizens through the American Civil War, Reconstruction, both World Wars and the Great Depression.

Georgia's Superior Courts are among the oldest continuously operating courts in the United States, predating both the U.S. Constitution and the U.S. Supreme Court.

By design, the Superior Court is at the center of Georgia's legal system. Each of Georgia's 159 counties has a Superior Court, Probate Court and Magistrate Court. Individual counties may have other courts such as State Court, Municipal Court or Recorder's Court.

Under the Georgia Constitution, the Superior Court of each county has exclusive power to grant divorces, exercise equitable power, try felonies, impose the death penalty and handle cases involving title to land. In counties which have no state court, the Superior Court will also try misdemeanor cases.

The Superior Courts also try many of the larger tort and contract cases as well as commercial litigation.

In addition, the Superior Court of each county serves as a court of appeal for certain decisions of Probate and Magistrate Courts and can review zoning decisions and certain decisions pertaining to property tax assessments, condemnations and foreclosures. In addition, Superior Court judges handle a variety of special appointments, such as appointment of Juvenile Court judges.

Our local Superior Courts are busy places. In recent years, the Chattahoochee Circuit has handled between eleven thousand and thirteen thousand cases each year. The majority of these cases have been and continue to be civil and domestic relations matters.

Judges have a duty to educate the public on our legal system. In carrying out this duty, Judge McBride is always happy to speak to school, church, church and community groups. Upon taking office in January, 2009, Judge McBride organized an active intern program for area high school students who are interested in a legal career. He has also organized and hosted mock trials for area elementary and high school students.

For further information or to arrange for Judge McBride to speak to your group, call 706/225-4275 or communicate by email at gmcbride@columbusga,org.