Appeal from Summary Conviction

Summary Appeals

After conviction at the Magisterial District Court for a Traffic or Non-Traffic case, you may appeal the Lower Court decision to the Court of Common Pleas. 

**Please note that if you are wanting only to appeal a License Suspension and not any underlying conviction, or a Landlord / Tennant dispute, these are civil matters and you must contact the Fayette County Prothonotary's Office.

You have 30 days from the date of disposition to file the appeal. The date of your hearing counts as day 1. The Clerk of Courts Office will not and is not permitted to calculate any filing deadline. 

A non-refundable filing fee in the amount of $46.55 must be paid in cash at the time of filing. No personal checks or money orders will be accepted for the filing fee. You must appear in person to file the appeal. 

You may print and fill out the Notice of Appeal from Summary Conviction form prior to arriving in the office or one can be provided to you. You will need your paperwork from the Magisterial District Court to complete the form. You may also utilize the Pennsylvania Unified Judicial System website to find your cases. All of the necessary information can be found within the docket pages. 

Once the appeal is filed and the filing fee is paid, the Clerk of Courts Office will schedule your Summary Appeal Hearing using dates and times that have been provided by the Court. The hearing date and time will be stamped onto the appeal, which you will receive a copy of. This will be the only hearing notice that you receive unless the Court must continue the hearing for any reason. In this case, you will receive a copy of the Order rescheduling the hearing by mail. It is imperative that you provide the correct mailing address and notify the office in writing immediately of any change of address.

By filing the appeal, the case is moved from the Magisterial District Court to the Court of Common Pleas. Any decision made by the Magisterial District Judge is stayed. If you are convicted at this level of Court, the fines and costs could be higher, depending on the Court Order, as the case is now at a higher level of Court. 

If the conviction also carries any penalty imposed by PennDot, such as a drivers license suspension or points, you will also need to complete a Request for Delay of Suspension form. This form is also available in the office and must be mailed to PennDot with a certified copy of the Summary Appeal. You must inform the office if you need a certified copy of your appeal at the time of filing. One will be provided to you at no additional cost. 

If you fail to appear for your hearing and are found guilty in your absence, or you are dissatisfied with the outcome of the appeal, and wish to appeal to the next level of Court, you will need to file a Notice of Appeal to Superior Court. There are no forms available and you must either refer to the Pennsylvania Rules of Criminal Procedure and Pennsylvania Rules of Appellate Procedure or consult with an attorney. 

Please be advised that the Clerk of Courts Office is the filing office for the Criminal Division of the Fayette County Court of Common Pleas and will accept any motion or petition that you wish to file. While we will assist you in any way that we can, we are not attorneys and cannot give you legal advice.