The federal system also has three levels, the district courts, the court of appeals and the United States Supreme Court. On the federal level, states are broken down into several geographic district courts. The federal courts of appeal hear cases from all the district courts in their area. Currently, there are 11 federal courts of appeals. Many hear cases coming out of district courts from several states which comprise each circuit. The United States Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. is the highest court in the land. Appeals to the Supreme Court are not automatic, but based upon petitions, which allow the Supreme Court justices to pick and choose what cases they will hear.