DAR File No. 37383

This rule was published in the April 1, 2013, issue (Vol. 2013, No. 7) of the Utah State Bulletin.

Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission, Administration

Rule R597-1

General Provisions

Notice of Proposed Rule


DAR File No.: 37383
Filed: 03/04/2013 03:55:50 PM


Purpose of the rule or reason for the change:

The changes delete an outmoded provision and provide a layperson's definition for a statutory legal term that lay members of the commission did not understand.

Summary of the rule or change:

The changes delete a reference to a pilot program that was completed in 2009; and provide a layperson's definition for the statutory term, "rebuttable presumption".

State statutory or constitutional authorization for this rule:

  • Sections 78A-12-201 through 78A-12-206

Anticipated cost or savings to:

the state budget:

No impact because the amendment does not change anything related to how the commission operates or spends its state-allocated budget.

local governments:

No impact because the commission does not regulate local government or have any dealings with local government.

small businesses:

Because the commission has no authority with respect to small businesses and no dealings of any kind with them, these changes have no impact on small businesses.

persons other than small businesses, businesses, or local governmental entities:

The only persons other than small businesses, businesses, or local government entities affected by these changes are lay members of the commission. The impact is that they will better understand a legal term that they must use in evaluating judges.

Compliance costs for affected persons:

There are no compliance costs for any affected persons. If there were, the commission would assume them.

Comments by the department head on the fiscal impact the rule may have on businesses:

The rule amendment has no fiscal impact on businesses.

Joanne C. Slotnik, Executive Director

The full text of this rule may be inspected, during regular business hours, at the Division of Administrative Rules, or at:

Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission

Direct questions regarding this rule to:

  • Joanne Slotnik at the above address, by phone at 801-538-1652, by FAX at 801-538-1024, or by Internet E-mail at [email protected]

Interested persons may present their views on this rule by submitting written comments to the address above no later than 5:00 p.m. on:


This rule may become effective on:


Authorized by:

Anthony Schofield, Chair


R597. Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission, Administration.

R597-1. General Provisions.

R597-1-1. Purpose and Intent.

(1) The commission adopts these rules to describe how it intends to conduct judicial performance evaluations.

(2) The purpose of this rule is to ensure that:

(a) voters have information about the judges standing for retention election;

(b) judges have notice of the standards against which they will be evaluated; and

(c) the commission has the time necessary to fully develop the program mandated by Utah Code Ann. 78A-12-101 et seq.

[(3) These rules are subject to modification pending the outcome of the 2009 pilot programs.


R597-1-2. Definitions.

(1) Closed case.

(a) For purposes of administering a survey to a litigant, a case is "closed":

(i) in a district or justice court, on the date on which the court enters an order from which an appeal of right may be taken;

(ii) in a juvenile court, on the date on which the court enters a disposition;

(iii) in an appellate court, on the date on which the remittitur is issued.

(b) For purposes of administering a survey to a juror, a case is "closed" when the verdict is rendered or the jury is dismissed.

(2) Evaluation cycle. "Evaluation cycle" means a time period during which a judge is evaluated. Judges not on the supreme court are subject to two evaluations cycles over a six-year judicial term. Justices of the supreme court are subject to three evaluation cycles over a ten-year judicial term.

(3) Survey. "Survey" means the aggregate of questionnaires, each targeting a separate classification of survey respondents, which together are used to assess judicial performance.

(4) Surveyor. "Surveyor" means the organization or individual awarded a contract through procedures established by the state procurement code to survey respondents regarding judicial performance.

(5) Rebuttable presumption.

(a) A presumption to recommend a judge for retention arises when the judge meets all minimum performance standards.

(b) A presumption not to recommend a judge for retention arises when the judge fails to meet one or more minimum performance standards.

(c) A commissioner may overcome the presumption for or against a retention recommendation on any judge if the commissioner concludes that substantial countervailing evidence outweighs the presumption.


KEY: performance evaluations, judicial performance evaluations, judiciary, judges

Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment: [August 18, 2010]2013

Authorizing, and Implemented or Interpreted Law: 78A-12


Additional Information

The Portable Document Format (PDF) version of the Bulletin is the official version. The PDF version of this issue is available at https://rules.utah.gov/publicat/bull-pdf/2013/b20130401.pdf. The HTML edition of the Bulletin is a convenience copy. Any discrepancy between the PDF version and HTML version is resolved in favor of the PDF version.

Text to be deleted is struck through and surrounded by brackets (e.g., [example]). Text to be added is underlined (e.g., example).  Older browsers may not depict some or any of these attributes on the screen or when the document is printed.

For questions regarding the content or application of this rule, please contact Joanne Slotnik at the above address, by phone at 801-538-1652, by FAX at 801-538-1024, or by Internet E-mail at [email protected].