Judge's behavior during interview

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coramnonjudice

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Judge's behavior during interview

Postby coramnonjudice » Mon Jul 16, 2018 2:58 pm

One of my law school classmates interviewed with a fed judge recently. She received an offer after the interview so it must have gone well on her end; however, during the interview, the judge point blank asked her how old she was, if she was married, and if she planned on "getting herself pregnant" during the clerkship term as a past clerk had done in his chambers. She was upset about the rude/offensive tone of the question. I can't imagine something like this happening in the private sector. Obviously she can't do much without jeopardizing her future prospects--is there any recourse for this type of behavior? Or, practically speaking, are judges immune from employment laws?

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UnicornHunter

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby UnicornHunter » Mon Jul 16, 2018 8:59 pm

Have her talk to career services and former clerks.

BlackAndOrange84

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby BlackAndOrange84 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 9:07 am

I don't think this is the hill your friend should choose to die on. Unless she wants to become a professional activist, trying to sue a federal judge is not a great way to start a career.

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coramnonjudice

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby coramnonjudice » Tue Jul 17, 2018 10:10 am

BlackAndOrange84 wrote:I don't think this is the hill your friend should choose to die on. Unless she wants to become a professional activist, trying to sue a federal judge is not a great way to start a career.


I completely agree. But I think that is precisely the problem--judges can get away with some pretty egregious behavior because they know they have their clerks over a barrel. Just seems like there should be some sort of mechanism in place--whether up front, or some kind of back channels--where this behavior can at least get reported.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby BlackAndOrange84 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 11:16 am

coramnonjudice wrote:
BlackAndOrange84 wrote:I don't think this is the hill your friend should choose to die on. Unless she wants to become a professional activist, trying to sue a federal judge is not a great way to start a career.


I completely agree. But I think that is precisely the problem--judges can get away with some pretty egregious behavior because they know they have their clerks over a barrel. Just seems like there should be some sort of mechanism in place--whether up front, or some kind of back channels--where this behavior can at least get reported.


I just looked over the workplace conduct report that came out of trying to address the Kozinski case (http://www.uscourts.gov/sites/default/f ... port_0.pdf). There's nothing in there about discrimination in hiring.

And from a little research, it looks like clerk hiring is out of Title VII, assuming a judge's chambers is a unit of the judiciary without positions that fit the definition of competitive civil service, which certainly seems to be the case. 42 U.S.C § 2000e–16(a). While it may be egregious in the sense that no other employer could get away with it, it doesn't look to be illegal at all.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby IPProf » Tue Jul 17, 2018 12:07 pm

Definitely talk to former clerks and see if this behavior is part of a pattern. Also, she could speak with whoever is running the clerkship office at her school. Most keep files on problem judges.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jul 17, 2018 12:15 pm

Fed clerk checking in.

First, your friend should obviously not continue to pursue a position with this judge.

Second, there is usually a mechanism within a court to file a complaint a against a judge. Either through HR or the clerk. You could also file a complaint with the bar. Not taking any position on whether that's a good use of your friend's time, but that would be the appropriate way to do something about it.

If this were me, I would not continue to pursue the position, but I would let certain people know about what happened, including career services and some professors I trust at my law school. Odds are this particular judge is known for this kind of behavior and you won't be surprising many people (even within the court). But if your friend wants to do something the best thing would be to make some kind of complaint to the court, because that either starts or adds to a record against the judge.

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coramnonjudice

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby coramnonjudice » Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:19 pm

BlackAndOrange84 wrote:
coramnonjudice wrote:
BlackAndOrange84 wrote:I don't think this is the hill your friend should choose to die on. Unless she wants to become a professional activist, trying to sue a federal judge is not a great way to start a career.


I completely agree. But I think that is precisely the problem--judges can get away with some pretty egregious behavior because they know they have their clerks over a barrel. Just seems like there should be some sort of mechanism in place--whether up front, or some kind of back channels--where this behavior can at least get reported.


I just looked over the workplace conduct report that came out of trying to address the Kozinski case (http://www.uscourts.gov/sites/default/f ... port_0.pdf). There's nothing in there about discrimination in hiring.

And from a little research, it looks like clerk hiring is out of Title VII, assuming a judge's chambers is a unit of the judiciary without positions that fit the definition of competitive civil service, which certainly seems to be the case. 42 U.S.C § 2000e–16(a). While it may be egregious in the sense that no other employer could get away with it, it doesn't look to be illegal at all.


That's what I was afraid of. So, hypothetically, an AIII judge can bring someone in for an interview and then say oh, I didn't know you were black/female/what have you, please leave? That's disgusting.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby Skool » Tue Jul 17, 2018 3:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Fed clerk checking in.

First, your friend should obviously not continue to pursue a position with this judge.

Second, there is usually a mechanism within a court to file a complaint a against a judge. Either through HR or the clerk. You could also file a complaint with the bar. Not taking any position on whether that's a good use of your friend's time, but that would be the appropriate way to do something about it.

If this were me, I would not continue to pursue the position, but I would let certain people know about what happened, including career services and some professors I trust at my law school. Odds are this particular judge is known for this kind of behavior and you won't be surprising many people (even within the court). But if your friend wants to do something the best thing would be to make some kind of complaint to the court, because that either starts or adds to a record against the judge.
Honestly, if this were me, I would probably continue to pursue the position. But then, I'm a dude, so this probably wouldn't happen to me.

And that's the whole god damn problem in a nut shell. Our profession sucks. The only rational thing to do is work for Judge Broski and and don't do anything that could trigger retaliation.

Pretty skeptical that going to a clerkship committee at your school is going to do anything. Everybody and their mama wants a clerkship. Even if students are warned by a clerkship committee, plenty of qualified folks are going to send in apps to this guy. And I actually worry about the effect of discouraging women to apply to him.

And submitting a complaint against a judge? What happens after the complaint is filed? Does the chief do an investigation or something. Seems weird if they take the complaint without at least giving some kind of notice to the judge and allowing him to respond. Sounds like a good way to set your career afire.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby PrayFor170 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 4:51 pm

your friend should obviously not continue to pursue a position with this judge


I hate to say this. It depends on whether your friend is in a position to pick offers.

If, let's say, she's below median at a non-T14 law school, and this offer is supposed to be way out of her league, then it won't do her good to quit this position only for this reason.

When you don't have bargaining power, you have to live with a lot of shit. That's the reality.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby hunt godlink » Tue Jul 17, 2018 8:37 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
your friend should obviously not continue to pursue a position with this judge


I hate to say this. It depends on whether your friend is in a position to pick offers.

If, let's say, she's below median at a non-T14 law school, and this offer is supposed to be way out of her league, then it won't do her good to quit this position only for this reason.

When you don't have bargaining power, you have to live with a lot of shit. That's the reality.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby jbagelboy » Tue Jul 17, 2018 10:31 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
your friend should obviously not continue to pursue a position with this judge


I hate to say this. It depends on whether your friend is in a position to pick offers.

If, let's say, she's below median at a non-T14 law school, and this offer is supposed to be way out of her league, then it won't do her good to quit this position only for this reason.

When you don't have bargaining power, you have to live with a lot of shit. That's the reality.


Some things are not worth going through just to get a particular short term job. Its just a one year clerkship. Its not that big of a deal, and certainly not worth subjecting oneself to constant harassment. Encouraging this applicant to continue with the process with this judge in light of this experience is reckless, terrible advise. This isn’t life and death - gain some perspective.

TrustMeImALawStudent

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby TrustMeImALawStudent » Wed Jul 18, 2018 12:58 am

The answer in today's age is obviously to go on social media. Boot him out like that Brock Turner judge.

nixy

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby nixy » Wed Jul 18, 2018 6:53 am

TrustMeImALawStudent wrote:The answer in today's age is obviously to go on social media. Boot him out like that Brock Turner judge.

Too bad about that whole life tenure thing.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby Elston Gunn » Wed Jul 18, 2018 6:58 am

Anonymous User wrote:
your friend should obviously not continue to pursue a position with this judge


I hate to say this. It depends on whether your friend is in a position to pick offers.

If, let's say, she's below median at a non-T14 law school, and this offer is supposed to be way out of her league, then it won't do her good to quit this position only for this reason.

When you don't have bargaining power, you have to live with a lot of shit. That's the reality.


Wtf??? It’s just a clerkship.

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coramnonjudice

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby coramnonjudice » Wed Jul 18, 2018 9:16 am

The problem with her choosing not to take the position is that the bigot then wins--by having to choose between harassment or forgoing an opportunity, she is indirectly excluded from that opportunity. May not affect her career forever, but I think this is a systemic issue that needs to be addressed as currently there is simply no recourse.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby minnbills » Wed Jul 18, 2018 9:40 am

I'm the fed clerk who dropped in earlier. How to proceed is entirely up to the applicant, but I would just drop this bit, from Justice Sotomayor's wiki page:

In her third year, she filed a formal complaint against the established Washington, D.C., law firm of Shaw, Pittman, Potts & Trowbridge for suggesting during a recruiting dinner that she was at Yale only via affirmative action. Sotomayor refused to be interviewed by the firm further and filed her complaint with a faculty–student tribunal, which ruled in her favor. Her action triggered a campus-wide debate,and news of the firm's subsequent December 1978 apology made the Washington Post.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 19, 2018 2:33 pm

It's not just Judge Broski. Judge Ikuta asked me the same questions. I don't know if she asks all female interviewees, but I see no reason why she would ask me, in particular.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby TrustMeImALawStudent » Mon Sep 10, 2018 6:45 pm

nixy wrote:
TrustMeImALawStudent wrote:The answer in today's age is obviously to go on social media. Boot him out like that Brock Turner judge.

Too bad about that whole life tenure thing.


Please read the news before you comment so you understand what you are talking about.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby nixy » Mon Sep 10, 2018 6:48 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
nixy wrote:
TrustMeImALawStudent wrote:The answer in today's age is obviously to go on social media. Boot him out like that Brock Turner judge.

Too bad about that whole life tenure thing.


Please read the news before you comment so you understand what you are talking about.

I’m confused. The Brock Turner judge was recalled by California voters. Voters don’t get to do that to federal judges.

(Yes if there’s enough of a stink maybe the circuit will make noises about doing something, a la Kozinski, but he resigned before anything could be done, so didn’t actually get booted out.)

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:19 pm

Report this judge immediately. It's illegal to ask that stuff anyway.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby QContinuum » Tue Sep 11, 2018 9:58 pm

jbagelboy wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
your friend should obviously not continue to pursue a position with this judge


I hate to say this. It depends on whether your friend is in a position to pick offers.

If, let's say, she's below median at a non-T14 law school, and this offer is supposed to be way out of her league, then it won't do her good to quit this position only for this reason.

When you don't have bargaining power, you have to live with a lot of shit. That's the reality.


Some things are not worth going through just to get a particular short term job. Its just a one year clerkship. Its not that big of a deal, and certainly not worth subjecting oneself to constant harassment. Encouraging this applicant to continue with the process with this judge in light of this experience is reckless, terrible advise. This isn’t life and death - gain some perspective.


Further, even if OP actually clerks for this judge and endures a year of harassment and possibly worse - is it likely that this clearly sexist judge will be a decent mentor or advocate for OP down the road? Absolutely not - he'll be busy promoting his male clerks.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby Barrred » Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:06 pm

QContinuum wrote:
jbagelboy wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
your friend should obviously not continue to pursue a position with this judge


I hate to say this. It depends on whether your friend is in a position to pick offers.

If, let's say, she's below median at a non-T14 law school, and this offer is supposed to be way out of her league, then it won't do her good to quit this position only for this reason.

When you don't have bargaining power, you have to live with a lot of shit. That's the reality.


Some things are not worth going through just to get a particular short term job. Its just a one year clerkship. Its not that big of a deal, and certainly not worth subjecting oneself to constant harassment. Encouraging this applicant to continue with the process with this judge in light of this experience is reckless, terrible advise. This isn’t life and death - gain some perspective.


Further, even if OP actually clerks for this judge and endures a year of harassment and possibly worse - is it likely that this clearly sexist judge will be a decent mentor or advocate for OP down the road? Absolutely not - he'll be busy promoting his male clerks.

This seems a bit much. Asking one arguably sexist question in an interview is not a reliable indicator that the judge is an out-and-out sexist/misogynist who wont be a good mentor or go to bat for his female clerks. Do you think Judge Ikuta, who has purportedly asked similar questions of female clerks (see above), does not serve as a good mentor/promoter of her female clerks?

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby lavarman84 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:11 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Report this judge immediately. It's illegal to ask that stuff anyway.


Don't do this. It's more likely to damage OP's career than his.

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Re: Judge's behavior during interview

Postby lavarman84 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:14 pm

Barrred wrote:This seems a bit much. Asking one arguably sexist question in an interview is not a reliable indicator that the judge is an out-and-out sexist/misogynist who wont be a good mentor or go to bat for his female clerks. Do you think Judge Ikuta, who has purportedly asked similar questions of female clerks (see above), does not serve as a good mentor/promoter of her female clerks?


Gotta agree. I would totally understand if OP is uncomfortable working for him after this, but I wouldn't assume he'll treat OP like crap because of the inappropriate question.



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