How Long Are the Terms of Judges in Special Federal Courts?

Judicial terms of judges in special courts vary from 4 years to life. The length of term depends on the type of appointment.

Some special judges, such as Supreme Court justices or court of appeals and district judges, are appointed by the president and approved by the Senate. Term length for individuals serving on these courts is "for life" because they often serve until they resign, are removed from office or die. The House of Representatives has the authority to impeach a judge to remove him or her.

Federal magistrates or bankruptcy judges are not appointed by the president. Bankruptcy judges are appointed by the court of appeals in their circuit for 14-year terms, while federal magistrates are assigned by their district judge for a full-time renewable term of 8 years. Part-time magistrates serve in 4-year renewable terms.