Marbury v. Madison

Case Date: 02/26/2021

Marbury v. Madison, 5 U.S. (1 Cranch) 137 (1803) is a landmark case in United States law and in the history of law worldwide. It formed the basis for the exercise of judicial review in the United States under Article III of the Constitution. It was also the first time in Western history a court invalidated a law by declaring it "unconstitutional", a process called judicial review.[1][2] The landmark decision helped define the "checks and balances" of the American form of government. The case resulted from a petition to the Supreme Court by William Marbury, who had been appointed by President John Adams as Justice of the Peace in the District of Columbia but whose commission was not subsequently delivered. Marbury petitioned the Supreme Court to force Secretary of State James Madison to deliver the documents, but the Court, with John Marshall as Chief Justice, denied Marbury's petition without reaching its merits. The Court instead held that the provision of the Judiciary Act of 1789 that enabled Marbury to bring his claim to the Supreme Court was unconstitutional, because it purported to extend the Court's original jurisdiction beyond that which Article III established.