Top row, L to R: Judge Ariel A. Rodriguez t/a; Justice Anne M. Patterson; Justice Faustino J. Fernandez-Vina; Judge Mary Catherine Cuff t/a; Front row, L to R: Justice Jaynee LaVecchia; Chief Justice Stuart Rabner; Justice Barry T. Albin;
The New Jersey Supreme Court is the highest appellate court. It is composed of a chief justice and six associate justices. As the state’s highest appellate court, the New Jersey Supreme Court decides appeals from the lower courts and cases in which a panel of appellate judges has disagreed on one or more issues on appeal. In addition, litigants may file a petition for certification with the Court to request that they hear their appeal. The Court may agree to hear an appeal because it presents legal issues of great importance to the public or because the issue is the subject of separate, conflicting appellate opinions. In deciding the cases that come before it, the Court interprets the New Jersey and the United States Constitution, New Jersey statutes, administrative regulations of the state’s governmental agencies, as well as the body of common law. The chief justice also serves as the administrative head for the court system, overseeing the management of the state's courts.