Concurrent jurisdiction is the ability to exercise judicial review by different courts at the same time, within the same territory, and over the same subject matter. For instance, a domestic violence matter may be heard in either a general civil court or a family court in the same county. Whichever court actually exercises its jurisdiction first will do so exclusively.
A state may have concurrent jurisdiction with a federal court, for example, when a crime defined under state law is committed on federal property, and certain offenses involving Indian tribal members. State and federal courts also have concurrent jurisdiction over the Jones Act, which authorizes seaman who suffers personal injury in course of employment to bring action for damages at law.
The following is an example of a state statute dealing with concurrent jurisdiction:
"In addition to other jurisdiction provided by law, a statutory county court exercising civil jurisdiction concurrent with the constitutional jurisdiction of the county court has concurrent jurisdiction with the district court in:
- civil cases in which the matter in controversy exceeds $500 but does not exceed $100,000, excluding interest, statutory or punitive damages and penalties, and attorney's fees and costs, as alleged on the face of the petition; and
- appeals of final rulings and decisions of the state Workers' Compensation Commission, regardless of the amount in controversy."