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Civil Litigation - Private
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average rating is 1 out of 5
average rating is null out of 5
He has the worst judicial temperament of any judge in the N.D. Cal. and any judge I have ever appeared before. He is an arrogant bully on the bench. He claims to support development of young lawyers but he nearly ruined my career when I appeared before him as a young associate on behalf of my first big client by threatening to sanction me for filing a motion that was consistent with the federal rules advisory committee notes, controlling Ninth Circuit precedent, and decisions from other judges on this court. But he wouldn't allow me to open my mouth at the hearing except to answer his questions without further explanation. Needless to say the client never asked me to argue in court after that on any case. I've seen plenty of short-tempered judges, but Judge Donato is not just short-tempered: he appears to have a pure hatred and resentment for his job and he is taking it out on the poor folks who are forced to appear before him. I wish there were some way his colleagues could conduct some type of intervention to help him before he ruins too many lives.
7/15/19, 2:16 AM
Hon. James Donato

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