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Presiding judicial officer within any multijudge court. It is the title of the highest judicial officer in any U.S. state, and of the leader of the U.S. Supreme Court. The U.S. chief justice, like the associate justices, is nominated by the president and confirmed by the Senate for a lifetime tenure. The chief justices of some state supreme courts are subject to popular election and mandatory retirement ages. Chief justices are normally responsible for the administration of their own court and the preparation of the judiciary's budget.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on chief justice, visit Britannica.com.