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Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania

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Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania
JurisdictionPennsylvania cases which involve decisions of governmental agencies; public sector legal questions; actions to which the Commonwealth is a party other than criminal cases; or actions to which a not-for-profit, private corporation is a party.
LocationHarrisburg (headquarters)
Composition methodStatewide partisan election with possible retention at term expiration. Vacancies are filled via appointment by the Governor.
Authorized byPenn. Const. Art. V § 3
42 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 561-64
Appeals toSupreme Court of Pennsylvania
Appeals fromCourt of Common Pleas
Superior Court
Judge term length10 years
Number of positions9
WebsiteCommonwealth Court
President Judge
CurrentlyRenée Cohn Jubelirer
SinceJanuary 7, 2022[1][2]
Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania is located in Pennsylvania
Court locations

The Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania is one of Pennsylvania's two intermediate appellate courts. The Commonwealth Court's headquarters is in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, with jurisdiction over administrative and civil public law. The Superior Court of Pennsylvania is the other intermediate appellate court in the Pennsylvania Unified Judicial System, having jurisdiction over criminal and private civil cases.

The jurisdiction of the nine-judge Commonwealth Court is limited to appeals from final orders of certain state agencies and certain designated cases from the Courts of Common Pleas involving public sector legal questions, government regulation, and certain matters involving Not-for-profit organizations. The Commonwealth Court also functions as a trial court in some civil actions by or against the Commonwealth government and cases regarding statewide elections. (42 Pa.C.S. §§ 761–764).

Article V, section 4 of the 1968 Pennsylvania Constitution created the Commonwealth Court. Acts enacted in 1970 set up the court. Judges are elected to 10-year terms, and must retire at the age of 75.

The Commonwealth Court publishes its precedential opinions in the Atlantic Reporter 3d series. From 1970 to 1995, the court maintained an official reporter, Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court Reports, volumes 1–168 (1970–1995). The Court's precedential and non-precedential ("unreported") opinions are posted online.

Appeals from Commonwealth Court decisions go to the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania.


Judge[3] Born Joined[1] Term ends Mandatory retirement[a] Party affiliation Law school
Renée Cohn Jubelirer, President Judge (1957-05-25) May 25, 1957 (age 67) January 7, 2002[b] 2031 2032 Republican Northwestern
Patricia A. McCullough (1956-11-15) November 15, 1956 (age 67) January 4, 2010 2029 2031 Republican Pittsburgh
Anne E. Covey (1959-11-04) November 4, 1959 (age 64) January 2, 2012 2031 2034 Republican Widener
Michael H. Wojcik (1964-09-24) September 24, 1964 (age 59) January 4, 2016 2025 2039 Democratic Pittsburgh
Christine Fizzano Cannon (1969-10-08) October 8, 1969 (age 54) January 1, 2018 2027 2044 Republican Widener
Ellen Ceisler (1957-09-11) September 11, 1957 (age 66) January 1, 2018 2027 2032 Democratic Temple
Lori A. Dumas (1967-12-02) December 2, 1967 (age 56) January 3, 2022 2031 2042 Democratic North Carolina Central
Stacy Wallace (1979-07-18) July 18, 1979 (age 45) January 3, 2022 2031 2054 Republican Duquesne
Matthew S. Wolf 1968 (age 55–56) January 1, 2024 2033 2043 Democratic Loyola New Orleans
  1. ^ Judges must retire by the last day (December 31) of the calendar year in which they reach the age of 75.[4]
  2. ^ Became President Judge on January 7, 2022.

Senior judges

Judge[3] Born Joined Assumed senior status Party affiliation Law school
Bonnie Brigance Leadbetter, President Judge Emerita (1947-02-19) February 19, 1947 (age 77) January 9, 1996 January 31, 2016 Republican Pittsburgh
Mary Hannah Leavitt, President Judge Emerita (1947-03-17) March 17, 1947 (age 77) January 7, 2002 January 3, 2022 Republican Dickinson

See also



  1. ^ a b "Historical List of Commonwealth Court Judges". Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania.
  2. ^ "Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court Elects Judge Renee Cohn Jubelirer as President Judge". Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania. January 7, 2022.
  3. ^ a b "Commonwealth Court Judges". Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania.
  4. ^ "Constitution of Pennsylvania - Article V §16".