(a) The Supreme Court, except as otherwise provided, shall consist of a chief justice and eight associate justices, who shall be elected by the qualified electors of the state at the general elections as provided by law for the election of members of the House of Representatives in Congress and who shall hold their offices for the term of six years from the first Monday after the second Tuesday in January next succeeding their election and until their successors are elected and qualified. Subject to the provisions of the Constitution respecting filling of vacancies in judicial offices, members of the Supreme Court shall be elected as follows: The Chief Justice and three associate justices shall be elected at the general election in November, 1976, two associate justices shall be elected at the general election in November, 1978, and three associate justices shall be elected at the general election in November, 1980. Thereafter members of the Supreme Court shall be elected in the general election next preceding the expiration of the respective term for which the incumbent holds office.
(b) Persons elected to the Supreme Court, or appointed to fill a vacant term of office on the Supreme Court, after January 1, 2010, must have been licensed by the Alabama State Bar Association a combined total of 10 years or more, or by any other state bar association for a combined total of 10 years or more, prior to beginning a term of office or appointment to serve a vacant term of office.
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