Code of the District of Columbia

§ 1–204.33. Nomination and appointment of judges.

(a) Except as provided in § 1-204.34(d)(1), the President shall nominate, from the list of persons recommended by the District of Columbia Judicial Nomination Commission established under § 1-204.34, and, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, appoint all judges of the District of Columbia courts.

(b) No person may be nominated or appointed a judge of a District of Columbia court unless the person —

(1) is a citizen of the United States;

(2) is an active member of the unified District of Columbia Bar and has been engaged in the active practice of law in the District for the five years immediately preceding the nomination or for such five years has been on the faculty of a law school in the District, or has been employed as a lawyer by the United States or the District of Columbia government;

(3) is a bona fide resident of the District of Columbia and has maintained an actual place of abode in the District for at least ninety days immediately prior to the nomination, and shall retain such residency while serving as such judge, except judges appointed prior to the effective date of this part who retain residency as required by § 11-1501(a) shall not be required to be residents of the District to be eligible for reappointment or to serve any term to which reappointed;

(4) is recommended to the President, for such nomination and appointment, by the District of Columbia Judicial Nomination Commission; and

(5) has not served, within a period of two years prior to the nomination, as a member of the Tenure Commission or of the District of Columbia Judicial Nomination Commission.

(c) Not less than six months prior to the expiration of the judge’s term of office, any judge of the District of Columbia courts may file with the Tenure Commission a declaration of candidacy for reappointment. If a declaration is not so filed by any judge, a vacancy shall result from the expiration of the term of office and shall be filled by appointment as provided in subsections (a) and (b) of this section. If a declaration is so filed, the Tenure Commission shall, not less than sixty days prior to the expiration of the declaring candidate’s term of office, prepare and submit to the President a written evaluation of the declaring candidate’s performance during the present term of office and the candidate’s fitness for reappointment to another term. If the Tenure Commission determines the declaring candidate to be well qualified for reappointment to another term, then the term of such declaring candidate shall be automatically extended for another full term, subject to mandatory retirement, suspension, or removal. If the Tenure Commission determines the declaring candidate to be qualified for reappointment to another term, then the President may nominate such candidate, in which case the President shall submit to the Senate for advice and consent the renomination of the declaring candidate as judge. If the President determines not to so nominate such declaring candidate, the President shall nominate another candidate for such position only in accordance with the provisions of subsections (a) and (b) of this section. If the Tenure Commission determines the declaring candidate to be unqualified for reappointment to another term, then the President shall not submit to the Senate for advice and consent the renomination of the declaring candidate as judge and such judge shall not be eligible for reappointment or appointment as a judge of a District of Columbia court.


(Dec. 24, 1973, 87 Stat. 795, Pub. L. 93-198, title IV, § 433; Oct. 28, 1986, 100 Stat. 3228, Pub. L. 99-573, §§ 12, 13; June 13, 1994, Pub. L. 103-266, §§ 2(b)(6), 2(b)(7), 2(b)(8), 108 Stat. 713; Sept. 9, 1996, 110 Stat. 2369, Pub. L. 104-194, § 131(b); Apr. 26, 1996, 110 Stat. 1321-92, Pub. L. 104-134, § 133(b).)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., Title 11, appx., § 433.

1973 Ed., Title 11, appx., § 433.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 1-204.31, § 1-204.34, and § 11-908A.

Editor's Notes

Section 133(b) of Public Law 104-134, 110 Stat. 1321 210, amended (b)(5) to read as follows: “(5) Members of the commission shall serve without compensation for services rendered in connection with their official duties on the Commission.”. Section 131(b) of Public Law 104-194, 110 Stat. 2369, repealed § 133(b) of Pub. L. 104-134 and provided that the provision of law amended by such section is hereby restored as if such section had not been enacted into law.