Since in 1970, each Maryland governor has established Judicial Nominating Commissions to review the qualifications of judicial applicants. In most instances, the Governor then appoints a new judge from the list of persons recommended by that court's Judicial Nominating Commission.
After appointment, the new judge takes an oath of office, to uphold the Constitution and laws of Maryland and serves as a judge of the circuit court until conclusion of the next general election.
Every judge of the circuit court must stand for election; however, anyone meeting the requirements of the Maryland Constitution may run against the appointed judge. The person certified by the election results then serves a 15-year term as judge of the circuit court.