ADA
General Rule 3

GENERAL RULE 3: ACCESS AND FAIRNESS

A. SANTA CLARA COUNTY COURT PROCEDURE

The Santa Clara County Superior Court is committed to ensuring that courtroom proceedings are conducted in a manner that is fair and impartial to all of the participants. Any complaints about bias or the appearance of bias, including but not limited to bias based on disability, gender identity, age, race, religion, ethnicity, or sexual orientation, whether that bias is directed toward counsel, court personnel, witnesses, parties, jurors, or any other participants, may be directed to the presiding judge, the court executive or the sitting judge.

(Eff. 1/01/04)

B. LOCAL COMMITTEE PROCEDURE

The Santa Clara County Superior Court and the Santa Clara County Bar Association  have established a procedure to assist in maintaining a courtroom environment free of bias or the appearance of bias. This procedure is fully set forth in the Santa Clara County Bar Association’s “Fairness and Equality in the Courts Procedure.” Any complaints concerning conduct that exhibits bias on the part of attorneys, litigants, judges and courtroom personnel arising within the physical confines of the courthouse and courtroom over which a presiding judge and/or a sitting judge has authority or influence may be made to the Executive Director or Officer of the Santa Clara County Bar Association or one of the four liaisons who are appointed by the Santa Clara County Bar Association to handle these complaints.

(Eff. 1/01/04)  

C.        LANGUAGE ACCESS COMPLAINTS

The Court is committed to providing equal access to court users regardless of English proficiency.  Members of the public who have a complaint or other feedback about the Court’s language access services may complete a Language Access Complaint Form (LA-100) and submit it online, in person at any Court facility Clerk’s Office, or by mail or by e-mail to:

Language Access Representative
Superior Court of California, County of Santa Clara
191 N. First Street
San Jose, CA 95113
languageaccesscomplaint@scscourt.org

The Language Access Complaint Form (LA-100) will be available in hard copy at every court facility and electronically on the Court’s website. 
The Court’s Language Access Representative will respond to all language access complaints other than those submitted anonymously. 
Within 30 days of receiving a language access complaint, the Language Access Representative will acknowledge receipt of the language access complaint and will prioritize those complaints involving the availability of a spoken-language interpreter for pending court proceedings. 
Within 60 days of receiving a language access complaint, the Language Access Representative will conduct a preliminary investigation of the complaint and notify the complainant of either the final action taken on the complaint or, if applicable, the need for additional investigation.  If additional investigation is needed, the Language Access Officer will notify the complainant at the conclusion of that investigation of the final action taken.
If a complainant disagrees with the notice of the outcome taken on his or her complaint, within 90 days of the date the court sends the notice of outcome, he or she may submit a written follow-up statement to the Language Access Representative indicating that he or she disagrees with the outcome of the complaint. The follow-up statement should be brief, specify the basis of the disagreement, and describe the reasons the complainant believes the court’s action lacks merit. The court’s response to any follow-up statement submitted by complainant after receipt of the notice of outcome will be the final action taken by the court on the complaint.
The Language Access Representative does not have the authority to change any decision made by a judicial officer, and the Language Access Representative’s review of the complaint does not in any way modify, extend or toll any procedural requirements or deadlines, such as the time limits for filing a notice of appeal or motion for reconsideration or set aside of a court order.  Under no circumstances will the submission of a complaint negatively impact the outcome of a complainant’s court case.
The Court will maintain records of the receipt, investigations and disposition of all language access complaints and will submit quarterly reports to the Judicial Council on the number and type of complaints received, the resolution of complaints, and any additional information requested by the Judicial Council to ensure implementation of the Strategic Plan for Language Access in the California Courts.


(Eff. 7/01/18)




 

General Rules: Summary - 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7

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