7th Amendment

"In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law."

The 7th Amendment

Ratification - 7th Amendment

1791

The 7th Amendment, as well as the rest of the Bill Of Rights, was ratified in 1791.

7th Amendment - Meaning

1791

The 7th Amendment guarantees an accused person of the right to have a trial by jury

Purpose of the Amendment

1791

American colonists had just endured a period of not being allowed jury trials by the British government. Thomas Jefforson mentioned this in the Declaration of Independence.

Before the Revolution

Navigation Act

1774

This was a series of acts that England used to strengthen trading with against enemies.

Before the Amendment

1789

Federalists wanted right of trial by jury because the Congress would usually make the decisions.

Smuggling

1790

Smuggling began with colonists and more colonists were being prosecuted without being tried.

After the Revolution

The Constitutional Convention

1787

The issue was discussed of whether or not to include a guarantee to the right to a jury trial in civil cases.