Courts in Pennsylvania
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The Supreme Court is the court of last resort in the state. It has seven justices.
The Superior Court is one of two intermediate appellate courts in the state. It reviews most civil and criminal cases from the courts of common pleas. The court has fifteen judges.
The Commonwealth Court hears cases involving state or local governments and regulatory agencies, as well as banking, insurance utility regulation, land use, elections cases. For a complete list, see the Commonwealth Court page.
The courts of common pleas are the trial courts of general jurisdiction.
Courts of limited jurisdiction
These courts deal with small claims, landlord-tenant disputes, traffic cases and minor criminal matters. Magisterial district judges are nominated by the governor and confirmed by the state senate.
The Philadelphia Municipal Court handles municipal matters.
The Pittsburgh Municipal Court handles Pittsburgh municipal matters and is staffed by magisterial district judges.
State court administration
Pennsylvania's state court system is collectively referred to as the "Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania." The Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts administers this collection of state courts.
There are three federal district courts in Pennsylvania.
- United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
- United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania
- United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
There are similarly three United States bankruptcy courts in Pennsylvania.
- United States bankruptcy court, Eastern District of Pennsylvania
- United States bankruptcy court, Middle District of Pennsylvania
- United States bankruptcy court, Western District of Pennsylvania
Appeals from these courts go to the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals.
- Judicial selection in Pennsylvania
- Pennsylvania Judiciary requests funding increase for underfunded courts
- Structure of the Pennsylvania court system
- Pennsylvania Unified Court System page on the Supreme Court
- Superior Court of Pennsylvania
- Website of the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court
- Eastern District of Pennsylvania
- Middle District of Pennsylvania
- Western District of Pennsylvania
- U.S. bankruptcy court, Eastern District of Pennsylvania
- U.S. bankruptcy court, Middle District of Pennsylvania
- U.S. bankruptcy court, Western District of Pennsylvania