Supreme Court appoints family court administrative judge

By Jim Boyle | Nov 4, 2014

The naming of Judge Kevin M. Dougherty to administrative judge of the Philadelphia

Court of Common Pleas' First Judicial District trial division left an opening in the court's supervisory roles.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has filled that gap with Monday's appointment of Judge Margeret T. Murphy as the administrative judge of the family division. Muprhy brings almost 30 years of experience in family matters, according to a press release.

Administrative judges direct the assignment of judges and other court personnel and oversee statistical reporting and analysis and technology matters. The administrative judge also sits on the First Judicial District’s Administrative Governing Board and the Supreme Court’s Domestic Relations Procedural Rules Committee.

The family division, sometimes referred to as family court, is one of three major divisions of the First Judicial District’s Court of Common Pleas. The family division consists of two major branches: the juvenile court and domestic relations.

Judge Murphy has served as supervising judge of domestic relations since 2006, in charge of all aspects of domestic relations cases — divorce, custody, support maters and domestic violence.

She will continue her duties there until the appointment as administrative judge becomes
effective Dec. 1.

Judge Murphy succeeds Judge Kevin M. Dougherty, who has been appointed administrative judge of the trial division.

Before her appointment to the bench in 2000, Judge Murphy served as a master in both divorce and support matters and previously served as a deputy court administrator of domestic relations.

In 2012 she received the Domestic Relations Association of Pennsylvania President’s Award for her leadership and promotion of a statewide child support enforcement program.

Judge Murphy is a frequent lecturer on the topic of family law for many organizations and law schools, including the Pennsylvania Bar Association, Philadelphia Bar Association and Pennsylvania Bar Institute.

She received her master of law in taxation from Villanova University School of Law, her juris doctorate from Widener University School of Law and a bachelor’s degree from Chestnut Hill College.

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