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About Pennsylvania's Courts

Pennsylvania's Unified Judicial System forms a hierarchical structure that can best be illustrated in the form of a pyramid. A description of each level of the judiciary, beginning with the minor courts is presented.

A Short History of Pennsylvania's Courts

Information on the historical underpinnings of the Pennsylvania Courts

Definitions of Legal Terms

Glossary of terms commonly used in the judicial system.

How Judges Are Elected

Information on the basic requirements for the position of judge and information on elections, tenure and the filling of judicial vacancies.

Jury Duty in Pennsylvania

Information on serving on jury duty in the courts of Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania Judiciary's Web Application Portal

This site is the Internet Home for the Court's Electronic Services (E-Services). The Pennsylvania Judiciary Web Portal provides the public with access to various aspects of court information, including appellate courts, common pleas courts and magisterial district court docket sheets; common pleas courts and magisterial district court calendars; and PAePay.

Pennsylvania Justice - Understanding The Pennsylvania Courts (Video)

This is a fast-paced, animated video that describes the role and work of the courts. It details the role of the courts in a democracy, the structure of the Pennsylvania court system including jury service and how various types of cases advance through the system.

Pennsylvania's Judicial System: How the Courts Operate

Information from the Pennsylvania Courts website about the operation of the Judicial System in Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania judiciary hears two types of cases: criminal cases and civil cases. A criminal charge is a violation of the criminal law and considered an offense against the community. Civil cases include every type of legal action except criminal actions, including personal injuries, contract disputes, adoptions, divorces and faulty consumer goods. Learn about the differences in how the courts operate in each type of case.

THE JUDICIAL BRANCH - Judicial System Educational Video

Video presentation highlighting the operation of Pennsylvania's Court system (17:28).

Jury Duty in Pennsylvania

Information on serving on jury duty in the courts of Pennsylvania.

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