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2014 California Rules of Court

Rule 10.502. Judicial sabbatical pilot program

(a) Objective

Sabbatical leave is a privilege available to jurists by statute. The objective of sabbatical leave is to facilitate study, teaching, research, or another activity that will benefit the administration of justice and enhance judges' performance of their duties.

(b) Eligibility

(1)A judge or justice is eligible to apply for a paid sabbatical under Government Code section 77213 if:

(A)He or she has served for at least seven years as a California judicial officer, including service as a subordinate judicial officer;

(B)He or she has not taken a sabbatical within seven years of the date of the proposed sabbatical; and

(C)He or she agrees to continue to serve as a judicial officer for at least three years after the sabbatical.

(2)Any judge is eligible to apply for an unpaid sabbatical under Government Code section 68554.

(c) Application

(1)An eligible judge may apply for a sabbatical by submitting a sabbatical proposal to the Administrative Director of the Courts with a copy to the presiding judge or justice.

(2)The sabbatical proposal must include:

(A)The judge's certification that he or she meets the eligibility requirements established in (b);

(B)The beginning and ending dates of the proposed sabbatical;

(C)A description of the sabbatical project, including an explanation of how the sabbatical will benefit the administration of justice and the judge's performance of his or her duties; and

(D)A statement from the presiding judge or justice of the affected court, indicating approval or disapproval of the sabbatical request and the reasons for such approval or disapproval, forwarded to the Judicial Sabbatical Review Committee with a copy to the judge.

(Subd (c) amended effective January 1, 2007.)

(d) Judicial Sabbatical Review Committee

A Judicial Sabbatical Review Committee will be appointed to make recommendations to the Judicial Council regarding sabbatical requests.

(1)Membership

The committee must include at least one member from each of the following groups:

(A)Administrative Presiding Justices Advisory Committee;

(B)Trial Court Presiding Judges Advisory Committee;

(C)Court Executives Advisory Committee;

(D)Governing Committee of the Center for Judicial Education and Research;

(E)Judicial Service Advisory Committee; and

(F)California Judges Association (liaison).

(2)Staffing

The committee will be staffed by the Human Resources Division of the Administrative Office of the Courts and may elect its chair and vice-chair.

(Subd (d) amended effective January 1, 2007.)

(e) Evaluation

(1)The Administrative Director of the Courts must forward all sabbatical requests that comply with (c) to the Judicial Sabbatical Review Committee.

(2)The Judicial Sabbatical Review Committee must recommend granting or denying the sabbatical request after it considers the following factors:

(A)Whether the sabbatical will benefit the administration of justice in California and the judge's performance of his or her duties; and

(B)Whether the sabbatical leave will be detrimental to the affected court.

(3)The Judicial Sabbatical Review Committee may recommend an unpaid sabbatical if there is insufficient funding for a paid sabbatical.

(f) Length

(1)A paid sabbatical taken under Government Code section 77213 may not exceed 120 calendar days. A judge may be allowed to add unpaid sabbatical time onto the end of a paid sabbatical if the purpose of the unpaid sabbatical is substantially similar to the work of the paid sabbatical.

(2)An unpaid sabbatical taken under Government Code section 68554 may not exceed one year.

(g) Ethics and compensation

A judge on sabbatical leave is subject to the California Code of Judicial Ethics and, while on a paid sabbatical, must not accept compensation for activities performed during that sabbatical leave but may receive reimbursement for the expenses provided in canon 4H(2) of the Code of Judicial Ethics.

(h) Judge's report

On completion of a sabbatical leave, the judge must report in writing to the Judicial Council on how the leave benefited the administration of justice in California and on its effect on his or her official duties as a judicial officer.

(Subd (h) amended effective January 1, 2007.)

(i) Retirement and benefits

(1)A judge on a paid sabbatical leave under Government Code section 77213 continues to receive all the benefits of office and accrues service credit toward retirement.

(2)A judge on unpaid sabbatical leave under Government Code section 68554 receives no compensation, and the period of absence does not count as service toward retirement. The leave does not affect the term of office.

(j) Judicial assignment replacement

Funds must be made available from the Judicial Administration Efficiency and Modernization Fund to allocate additional assigned judges to those courts whose judges' requests for paid sabbaticals are approved.

Rule 10.502 amended and renumbered effective January 1, 2007; adopted as rule 6.151 effective January 1, 2003.

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