By Chief Judge Kenneth M. Switzer
Spring is upon us once again, and it is time for the annual survey regarding the judges of the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims. We appreciated your input in last year’s survey and humbly ask for your follow up.
Each of the 12 judges will be individually listed for respondents to grade his or her performances on a five-point scale from poor to excellent within nine categories:
- the judge’s understanding of the case,
- quality of written decisions,
- demeanor toward counsel and parties,
- promptness in issuing orders,
- impartiality as to lawyers,
- impartiality as to parties, and
- punctuality in conducting their hearings.
Of course, we ask that persons with no experience with the judge refrain from rating him or her and trust that these will be filled out objectively, without consideration of the outcome of the case.
How we serve and treat the people appearing before us is an important part of our mission in providing a forum to resolve issues by applying the law to the facts when the parties are unable to reach agreement otherwise.
The survey will be available online and by hard copy at each office from Monday, April 24 until Friday, May 5. Boxes will be provided at each location for the paper forms. All responses are confidential. Paper forms will be collected by Mediation and Ombudsman Services of Tennessee staff and not by the judges. Again, thank you for participating.
In addition, in June we will send out a separate survey, electronically only, to all the lawyers and parties on our e-mail list who have participated in an evidentiary hearing in the last year. The survey contains only nine questions with multiple choice answers, while the tenth question invites comments. We will send the same survey to lawyers and self-represented litigants on June 1, 2017. We very much appreciated the previous responses to this survey and look forward to more input very soon. It provides us important feedback on the level of service we provide to you, our “customers.”