Your Employee Rights and How to Report Wrongful Conduct 

This page includes information on how Northern District of California employees (law clerks, chambers staff, Clerk’s Office staff, and Probation and Pretrial Services staff) can report and resolve employment-related disputes, and how any person can file a complaint of judicial misconduct or disability.

Ninth Circuit Employment Dispute Resolution Policy (Updated 2020)

In October 2020, the Northern District of California adopted the Ninth Circuit’s updated Employment Dispute Resolution (EDR) Policy.  The EDR Policy was designed by the Ninth Circuit Workplace Environment Committee to assure that respect, fairness, dignity, and tolerance are a part of the culture of our workplace. The goal is to eliminate misconduct, including discriminatory, harassing, demeaning, and bullying behavior.

The judges of this court affirmed their commitment to this goal, and voted to adopt the Ninth Circuit’s EDR Policy in its entirety, as memorialized in General Order 15.

How to Report Judicial Misconduct or Disability

The Judicial Conduct and Disability Act of 1980, 28 U.S.C. §§ 351-364, establishes a process by which any person can file a complaint alleging a federal judge has engaged in “conduct prejudicial to the effective and expeditious administration of the business of the courts” or has become, by reason of a mental or physical disability, “unable to discharge all the duties” of the judicial office.

The Rules for Judicial-Conduct and Judicial-Disability Proceedings, as amended on March 12, 2019, provide mandatory and nationally uniform provisions governing the substantive and procedural aspects of misconduct and disability proceedings under the Judicial Conduct and Disability Act.

Please Note:  The judicial conduct and disability review process cannot be used to challenge the correctness of a judge’s decision in a case. A judicial decision that is unfavorable to a litigant does not alone establish misconduct or a disability.  The reviewing Chief Circuit Judge may dismiss a complaint if, following review, he or she finds it is not cognizable under the statute, is directly related to the merits of a decision or procedural ruling, or is frivolous or lacks sufficient evidence to raise an inference of misconduct.  See 28 U.S.C. § 352(b)(1)(A)(i)-(iii)Ninth Circuit Guidelines for Judicial Misconduct or Disability Complaints.


Judicial Misconduct or Disability Complaint Form and Instructions