Pittsburgh Gov Guide, A website of The Pittsburgh Foundation
Trees on Mt. Washington frame the Pittsburgh skyline at sunrise. Photo by Dave DiCello.

Department of Law

The Department of Law provides legal advice and serves as in-house counsel to the City of Pittsburgh, which often involves providing advice to the Mayor, City Directors, City Council, and various governmental units, as provided for pursuant to the City of Pittsburgh’s Home Rule Charter. The Department of Law is responsible for all legal affairs for the City of
Pittsburgh. The Department of Law represents the City in all legal aspects of its daily governmental functions. It also represents the City in high profile cases, significantly impacting public policy and City residents’ quality of life.

The Solicitor and Assistant Solicitors represent the City of Pittsburgh regarding all civil litigation, legislative and legal issues, and code enforcement proceedings. In addition to litigation, solicitors assist in the drafting and review of city legislation, which includes preparing all contracts for the City of Pittsburgh and providing legal counsel to city officials.

The Law Department is divided into eight general service areas or divisions:

  • Litigation.
  • Labor and Employment.
  • General Municipal.
  • Tax.
  • Real Estate.
  • Zoning.
  • Claims.
  • Open Records Officer.

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More about the Department of Law

Below is a list of content in the Department of Law's Transition Brief (prepared by Thomas Consulting Group for The Pittsburgh Foundation). 


  • Potential conflicts.
  • Routine review of local and state legislation.
  • Routine examination of all board and commission proceedings.
  • No records retention policy.
  • Document management and case management systems.
  • Budgeting for judgments and potential liabilities.


  • Enabling legislation.
  • Mission and vision.
  • Organizational chart.
  • Description of services of each divsion.
  • Agency goals and performance metrics.
  • Budget.
  • Programs and projects.
  • Accomplishments.
  • Opportunities  and risks.

Download the full report