Court's Judicial Performance Evaluation Committee
Seeks Response in Evaluation of Judges in Suffolk County;
First Time On-line Evaluations Will Be Used
part of the continuing program to evaluate and enhance
judicial performance, the Supreme Judicial Court's Judicial
Performance Evaluation Committee has recently sent questionnaires
to attorneys and court employees in Suffolk County. Jurors
who participate in trials will receive questionnaires upon
completion of their jury duty for the next several months.
Forty-eight judges will be evaluated in the Boston Municipal
Court Department, the District Courts in Suffolk County,
Suffolk Juvenile Court, Boston Housing Court, and Suffolk
Probate and Family Court. Superior Court judges in Suffolk
County will be evaluated later in 2006.
round of evaluation is the first time that the electronic
evaluation system is being used. Attorneys whose email addresses
were known to the Supreme Judicial Court will receive an
invitation inviting them to use the evaluation website
and will be given a username and password. Out of the approximately
4000 attorneys selected for the Suffolk County evaluation,
almost 900 will be able to complete the evaluation on-line.
If attorneys wish the Supreme Judicial Court to have
their email addresses for conducting evaluation, email
addresses can be registered at http://judeval.sjc.state.ma.us/?go=reg.
Judicial Performance Evaluation Committee requests that
attorneys who receive questionnaires complete and return
them to the Supreme Judicial Court as soon as possible,
as the success of the evaluation program depends upon timely
responses. A high rate of participation enables the Committee
to provide judges with fair and complete evaluations. Lawyers
who have appeared in court multiple times in these counties
in the last two years, according to computerized court
records, have received questionnaires. The deadline for
returning the survey is December 21, 2005.
the categories covered in the evaluations are: a judge's
knowledge of the law; temperament on the bench; courtroom
control; treatment of litigants, witnesses, jurors, and
attorneys; fairness and impartiality; and, timeliness in
issuing written decisions.
questionnaires are confidential and do not request the
names of respondents. The resulting reports are also confidential
and are given only to the judge being evaluated and to
the appropriate Chief Justices.
the inception of the program in 2001, evaluation has been
conducted in all the counties in the Commonwealth.
concerning questionnaires and evaluations should be directed
to Mona Hochberg, Supreme Judicial Court Judicial Performance
Evaluation Coordinator, at (617) 557-1156, or via email
at firstname.lastname@example.org For
other information, please contact Joan Kenney, Public Information
Officer, Supreme Judicial Court, at (617) 557-1113, or
via email at email@example.com.