The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania

The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania is the highest court in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. It also claims to be the oldest appellate court in the United States, which claim is disputed by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania began in 1684 as the Provincial Court, and casual references to it as the “Supreme Court” of Pennsylvania were made official in 1722 upon its reorganization as an entity separate from the control of the royal governor. 

Today, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania maintains a discretionary docket, meaning that the Court may choose which cases it accepts, with the exception of mandatory death penalty appeals, and certain appeals from the original jurisdiction of the Commonwealth Court.This discretion allows the Court to wield powerful influence on the formation and interpretation of Pennsylvania law.