Korean judges rated by lawyersBy Nathan Schwartzman Jan 11, 2013 11:35AM UTC
Source article in Korean is at this link.
On the 9th the Seoul Bar Association announced the results of its ratings of judges nationwide, finding that 48-year old Kim Dae-woong, chief judge of the Seoul Central District Courts, received a perfect score along with 9 colleagues who scored in the top 1% in the survey of lawyers (2012년 법관평가 결과).
The latest survey saw 2,738 judges who served nationwide between January and December of 2012 rated by lawyers on a scale ranging up to 100 in three categories: fairness (four sub-items, 40 points); manners and kindness (two sub-items, 20 points); and judging skills (four sub-items, 40 points).
The lawyers who participated in the survey included 460 members of the Seoul Bar Association (9,128 members), who rated 978 judges. The average judge was rated 74.86.
The judical ratings were prepared for member lawyers to freely record their judgments in a judicial evaluation form prepared on the basis of the judicial ethics codeby a judicial evaluations committee in the Seoul Bar Association.
The Bar Association announced that “to obtain accurate ratings, lawyers rated judges in cases in which they had directly participated, and ratings were recognized as valid only in cases for which the rater’s real name, date of birth, case number, and judge’s name were disclosed.”
The Bar Association highlighted the 10 judges who were rated in the top 1% of the 978 judges rated in 2012.Just as last year, to increase the objectivity and reliability of the ratings, they were chosen from among the 174 judges were rated by five or more lawyers.
The top 10 judges received an average score of 97.54, with Judge Kim Dae-woong being rated a perfect 100 by every lawyer.
Of the top 10 judges, seven are in the Seoul Central District Courts. In addition to Judge Kim, the list includes Judge Kim Dae-seong, Judge Kim Hwan-su, Judge Park Gwan-geun, Judge Lee Won-beom, Judge Seong Eon-ju, and Judge Ahn Hui-gil.
The judges in the bottom 10 were also rated by at least five lawyers. They received an average rating of 42.53. Three are in the Seoul High Court, one is in the Seoul Central District Courts, one is in the Seoul Eastern District Courts, and one is in the Seoul Western District Courts.
The Bar Association did not publish the names of the bottom 10 judges out of respect for their courts, but did send the list to the Supreme Court.
The Bar Association announced that “the highest-rated judges in 2012 can be seen as exemplars of court administration, being respectful of parties in litigation and fostering courteous courtroom cultures.”
“However, Judge S, who has received an average rating of just 46.5 from 10 lawyers in consecutive years, needs to make several urgent reforms regarding a number of problems raised by the lawyers who have appeared before Judge S,” the Association said.
The Bar Association announced that “this association will be active in judicial ratings to raise the profile of excellent judges who work to bring about a better court system, and will take the lead in increasing the esteem of the entire legal field by promoting awareness of judges who do not do so.”