A state court is a court in one of the 50 state judicial systems of the United States. State courts vary widely in scope and structure. Most state courts and their laws are generally patterned after the English common law, with the exception being structure and substance originally developed in civil law. Each state has its own system, and with a few exceptions, most of the systems embody similar structures and levels of authority.

Over 50 million nontraffic cases are filed in state courts each year, while only about 1 million are filed in federal courts annually. Typically, state courts can hear almost every type of case, conflict, or complaint—both civil and criminal—based upon violation of the state’s constitution or the laws and regulations of the ...

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