What Is the Difference Between a Judge and a Magistrate?

A magistrate is appointed by the District court judges and are limited to what cases they can handle; however, a District court judge is appointed by the president and presides over felony trials and sentencing. The magistrate conducts hearings but cannot try or give sentencing on a felony case.

Judges and magistrates seemingly have similar jobs. However, the main differences lies in who they are appointed by and what cases they try. When it comes to cases of felony, the magistrate can only do the initial hearings and the rest of the case must be handled by the judge. Also, magistrates serve ten year terms that are renewable but judges are tenured for life.