A supreme court (also called a court of last resort or instance, court of final appeal or high court) is in some jurisdictions the highest judicial body within that jurisdiction's court system, whose rulings are not subject to further review by another court. The designations for such courts differ among jurisdictions. Courts of last resort typically function primarily as appellate courts, hearing appeals from the lower trial courts or intermediate-level appellate courts. Many countries in fact have multiple "supreme courts," with each being the court of last resort for a particular geographical region or on a particular area of law. The United States, having a federal system of government, has a single Supreme Court of the United States, but each U.S. state furthermore has its own high court over which the U.S. Supreme Court only has jurisdiction on issues of federal law. Other jurisdictions follow the Austrian model of a separate constitutional court (first developed in the Czechoslovak constitution and Austrian Constitution of 1920). Furthermore, in e.g. Finland, Sweden, Czech Republic, Poland, and Taiwan, there is a separate Supreme Administrative Court whose decisions are final and whose jurisdiction does not overlap with the Supreme Court. The U.S. states of Texas and Oklahoma also divide subject matter jurisdiction among two separate courts of last resort, with one hearing criminal cases and the other civil cases.

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