Temporary Judge/Settlement Attorney Program
What is a Temporary Judge and/or a Settlement Attorney
A court-appointed temporary judge is an attorney who has satisfied the requirements for appointment under California Rules of Court, rule 2.812 and has been appointed by the court to serve as a temporary judge in that court. Settlement attorneys are attorneys who assist the court in settlement conferences.
Need for Temporary Judges and Settlement Attorneys in San Diego
As the second largest trial court system in the state and the third largest in the nation, the San Diego Superior Court schedules many temporary judges and settlement attorneys each month. The court utilizes temporary judges to hear small claims, traffic, and family support cases, and settlement attorneys to assist the court in settlement conferences in civil, family, and probate. Temporary judges and settlement attorneys can serve in various court locations, including Central (Downtown), Kearny Mesa, East County (El Cajon), North County (Vista), and South County (Chula Vista). Evening scheduling may also be available for small claims and traffic cases.
Rules and Administrative Policy Governing Temporary Judges and Settlement Attorneys
The California Judicial Council, which governs all California state courts, enacted rules 2.810 - 2.834 of the California Rules of Court to govern the selection, training, appointment, supervision, and evaluation of court-appointed temporary judges. These rules formed the basis for the court's policy on temporary judges and settlement attorneys (SDSC Form #ADM-009).
Applying to be a Temporary Judge and/or Settlement Attorney
To qualify for appointment as a temporary judge and/or settlement attorney, an applicant must be an active member of the California State Bar in good standing for at least ten years immediately preceding appointment. For a complete list of requirements, please see:
- Temporary Judge and Settlement Attorney Policy (SDSC Form #ADM-009)
- Application to Serve as a Temporary Judge and/or Settlement Attorney (SDSC Form #ADM-153)
- Background Investigation Form Volunteers (SDSC Form #ADM-393)
All applicants will also be required to successfully complete a background check with live scan fingerprinting, which checks the Department of Justice and FBI databases (at no cost to the applicant).
For more information about the court's Temporary Judge/Settlement Attorney Program, please contact the administrator at