Judicial System

The Courts of Common Pleas are the general trial courts of Pennsylvania. They are organized into 60 judicial districts. Most districts follow the geographic boundaries of counties, but seven of the districts are comprised of two counties. Each district has from one to 93 judges and has a president judge and a court administrator.

Minor courts, or special courts, are the first level of Pennsylvania's judiciary. These courts are presided over by magisterial district judges (MDJs) and municipal court judges. MDJs do not have to be lawyers, but they are required to pass a qualifying exam.