FAQs

Refer to the following frequently asked questions and judicial fact sheets to learn more about the Unified Judicial System.

If you have a question about a topic that is not listed below, contact the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts or your local court

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do I obtain a copy of a marriage license?

    Submit a note to the orphans' court clerk in the county where the license was obtained. Be sure to include the full names of each spouse (including maiden name) and the date and location of the marriage. Cost for copies of marriage licenses varies in each county.

  • How do I obtain a copy of a birth or death certificate?

    Contact the Department of Health. If you are a Harrisburg resident, contact 717-722-3480. If you are not a Harrisburg resident, contact 724-656-3100.

  • Can I purchase copies of court opinions?

    Many appellate court opinions can be found on this website under the specific court page. Opinions may also be purchased from any of the appellate courts. To purchase printed copies, contact the Supreme Court, Superior Court or Commonwealth Court.

  • I'm an inactive lawyer. What do I need to do to return to active status?

    If you are currently an inactive lawyer and need information about returning to active status, or if you wish to change your contact information, contact the Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court:

    The Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court
    Lawyer Assessment
    601 Commonwealth Ave., Ste. 5600
    PO Box 62625
    Harrisburg, PA 17106
    717-231-3380
    http://www.padisciplinaryboard.org/

  • What are problem solving courts?

    Problem solving courts focus on specific types of crimes. These crimes are typically associated with social problems, such as driving under the influence, drug and drug-related offenses and crimes committed by people with mental illness. The goal of problem solving courts is to supervise the treatment and rehabilitation of select defendants who are willing to try to change their behavior.

  • I can't afford a lawyer. How can I get access to legal help?

    If you have a criminal charge and cannot afford legal counsel, contact your local public defender’s office. The Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network helps those who cannot afford a lawyer with civil matters.

  • I want to represent myself in divorce or custody proceedings. Where do I begin?

    See the representing yourself page for family court forms and instructions. Be sure to watch the introductory video first.

  • Where can I access legal information and laws?

    Most Courts of Common Pleas maintain a library that acts as a legal information center for the judiciary, prosecutors, public defenders, attorneys and public. Most libraries are free and open to the public. To find a court near you, search our list of Common Pleas Courts.

     

  • How do I file a complaint against a judge?

    To file a complaint against a judge, contact the Judicial Conduct Board of Pennsylvania. Formal charges made against a judicial officer are heard and decided on by the Court of Judicial Discipline.

  • How do I file a complaint against a lawyer?

    To file a complaint against a lawyer, contact the Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court.