The news out of the California justice system is somewhere between dire and disastrous. All signs indicate it’s only going to get worse in California, and attorneys are scrambling for ways to deal with this crisis.
What can we in the legal community do? Below, I suggest steps attorneys can take to handle the overburdened court system and help ameliorate its unacceptable delays. First, some background:
Presiding Judge Katherine Feinstein of the San Francisco Superior Court has stated that “the civil justice system in San Francisco is collapsing.” The cuts to the San Francisco Superior Court will necessitate the closure of 25 of the 63 existing courtrooms and layoffs of 40% of court personnel. Already, eleven hearing officers/commissioners have received notices of separation. Judge Feinstein continued that, “we will prioritize criminal, juvenile and other matters that must, by law, be adjudicated within time limits. Beyond that, justice will neither be swift nor accessible.” (more…)