- Massachusetts Commission on Judicial Conduct
Media Contact for Massachusetts Commission on Judicial Conduct publishes Annual Report covering 2021 activities
Howard Neff, Executive Director
Boston, MA — On October 18, 2022, the Commission on Judicial Conduct’s Executive Director, Howard V. Neff, III, published the Commission’s 2021 Annual Report, covering its activities from January 1, 2021 through December 31, 2021.
The Commission reports that 637 complaints were filed with the Commission in 2021, and out of those complaints, sixty-one were docketed for investigation or Commission Screening. For a complaint to be docketed for investigation or Commission Screening, it must allege specific facts that, if true, would constitute judicial misconduct or disability.
For complaints docketed for Commission Screening, including stale complaints and anonymous complaints, the Commission must determine whether the complaint meets the necessary threshold to be investigated. In 2021, the Commission dismissed two complaints after Commission Screening and forty-five complaints after investigation (including four complaints dismissed with an expression of concern to the judge).
Of the complaints received in 2021, 438 were submitted through the Commission’s online complaint form, which first became available on July 22, 2015.
The Commission considered a total of 113 complaints in 2021, filed both in 2021 and prior years, and disposed of forty-nine of them in 2021. Sixty-five complaints remained pending at the end of 2021, including one complaint pending before the Supreme Judicial Court for final disposition, following a Formal Hearing.
Of the 113 complaints considered by the Commission in 2021, forty-seven of them were dismissed. Two complaints that were subject to an Informal Adjustment/Agreed Disposition were actively monitored by the Commission in 2021 and both of those complaints were successfully closed.
The Annual Report includes statistics for the year 2021; overall statistics dating back to the year 2017; a copy of the Commission’s enabling statute; a copy of its Rules; and a copy of the Code of Judicial Conduct, which became effective on January 1, 2016.
The Commission’s statute and rules, and a copy of the 2021 Annual Report are available on the Commission’s website at: www.mass.gov/cjc.