Judge James R. Brandlin

portriat of Judge BrandlinHon. James R. Brandlin
Judge, Superior Court of Los Angeles County

Current Term: Sept 15, 2012–Sept 14, 2015 (term has expired)
Membership: Voting member, appointed by Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye

Internal Committees: Policy Coordination and Liaison Committee, Vice-Chair
Council Liaison to: Superior Courts of Riverside and San Diego Counties; Judicial Council Office of Security



Judge Brandlin was appointed to the municipal court bench in 1993 and was elevated to the superior court in 1997. He has served as the Assistant Supervising Judge of the superior court's Southwest District (2007), as the Site Managing Judge of the Airport Courthouse (2001-2005), and as the Assistant Presiding Judge of the South Bay Municipal Court (1996, 1997). He also served as a pro tem Associate Justice for the Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Two (1995, 1996-1997). He is currently Assistant Supervising Judge of the Criminal Division of the Los Angeles Superior Court. He is a former member of the Judicial Council's Criminal Law Advisory Committee and is a current member of its Court Emergency Response and Security Task Force. He also serves as an instructor for the Center for Judicial Education and Research (CJER). A nationally recognized expert in judicial and court security and privacy protection, Judge Brandlin regularly teaches security and privacy protection classes across the country and has served on a number of security-related task forces. He has authored and sponsored several bills on judicial security and privacy protection.

Judge Brandlin received the Judge William E. McFaden Award from the South Bay Bar Association (2012) and the Judge of the Year Award from the Los Angeles County Bar Association's Criminal Justice Section (2008).


As part of the Judicial Council’s efforts to increase communication and transparency and promote accountability, council members serve as liaisons to the 58 trial courts and to the major service units of the Judicial Council staff. Members with updates present their reports at Judicial Council meetings, bringing fresh perspectives on the issues and challenges facing the judicial branch.

San Diego Superior Court liaison report
Dec 16, 2014
Judge Brandlin and Judge Weber report that budget cuts at the San Diego court have resulted in reduced staff, elimination of small claims advisors and court reporters in civil cases, and case delays and continuances. But despite these challenges, the court is moving forward with a new case management system to replace its failing system, and continues to hold luncheon meetings with local legislators and their aides to make them aware of the court’s funding challenges and how they reduce access to justice for the public.

Riverside County Superior Court liaison report
Aug 26, 2014
Judge Brandlin visited the court on August 12. He reviews challenges being faced by the trial court of Riverside County, including a $20 million deficit in 2013 that led to staff layoffs, closed courthouses, and reduced services. The Court has the 2nd highest workload statewide with just 85 judicial officers (based on workload, the court needs 138), annually averaging 5,120 cases per judicial officer (average statewide is 3,800).

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