Indiana courts’ minimum senior judge service days doubled for 2021

The minimum number of court senior judge service days for the upcoming year has been doubled from 15 to 30, and courts are encouraged to use senior judges to assist during the current COVID-19 pandemic, the Indiana Supreme Court announced in a Wednesday order.

The order additionally says that all senior judges certified by the Judicial Nominating Commission for service in 2021 are appointed to serve in the Indiana Court of Appeals, Indiana Tax Court, or any circuit, superior, or probate court during 2021.

Requests for additional days will need to be formally requested prior to the court exceeding its annual allotment and additional allotments will not be made prior to March 1, 2021, unless an urgent need is demonstrated. The largest additional allocation went to Boone County, which received 65 additional days in Superior Court I. A list of the allocation of senior judge service days by court for 2021 is included in the order.

Senior judges are also required to provide trial courts a statement of service to assist courts in tracking senior judge usage, the order says.

“Written requests for additional days shall be made via the General Counsel’s office by e-mailing [email protected], providing detailed information on new or changed circumstances necessitating additional senior judge service days. Requests for additional senior judge service days made after the court’s allotment has already been exceeded will be frowned upon and may be denied,” Chief Justice Loretta Rush wrote in the order.

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