About the Judicial Branch

  • Court levels: 3
  • Trial courts: 58—one in each county
  • Court of Appeal districts: 6
  • Highest court: California Supreme Court
  • Judicial branch budget is less than 2% of the State General Fund

The California court system—the largest in the nation, with approximately 1,800 justices and judges and 5 million cases—serves more than 39 million people. The state Constitution vests the judicial power of California in the Supreme Court, Courts of Appeal, and superior courts. The Constitution also provides for the formation and functions of the Judicial Council, the policymaking body for the judicial branch.

order in which cases are seen