Lawyers Journal

SJC judicial evaluations to focus on Suffolk County

Attorneys and court employees who work in the Boston Municipal Court, Boston Housing Court and Suffolk County district courts are being asked to evaluate judges.

As part of the continuing program to enhance judges' performance, questionnaires prepared by the Supreme Judicial Court's Committee on Judicial Performance Evaluation are being sent to attorneys and court employees.

Lawyers who have appeared in those courts within the last two years will receive the questionnaires. The committee encourages those who receive the forms to respond at their earliest opportunity. Jurors who participate in trials also will be asked to complete questionnaires once they complete jury duty.

Judges are evaluated in categories including courtroom control; treatment of litigants, witnesses, jurors and attorneys; knowledge of the law; and other topics.

Respondents to the questionnaires do not need to give their names. The evaluations are kept strictly confidential except to those being evaluated and the appropriate chief justices.

Superior court judges in Suffolk and Middlesex counties, as well as other trial court judges in Middlesex County, will be evaluated in 2003.

Suffolk Juvenile Court judges and Suffolk Probate and Family Court judges were recently evaluated and have received their results. Previous evaluations have occurred in Bristol, Plymouth, Barnstable, Dukes and Nantucket counties. Land Court judges also have been evaluated.

Questions concerning the evaluations may be directed to Mona Hochberg, judicial performance evaluation coordinator, Supreme Judicial Court, at (617) 557-1156 or e-mail at [e-mail mona.hochberg].

©2014 Massachusetts Bar Association