Board of Judicial Conduct (BJC)

About the Board of Judicial Conduct

The regulation of judicial conduct is critical to preserving the integrity of the judiciary and enhancing public confidence in the judicial system. The Board of Judicial Conduct was created by the Legislature and is intended to provide an orderly and efficient method for making inquiry into the physical, mental, and moral fitness of any Tennessee judge; the judge's manner of performance of duty; and the judge's commission of any act that reflects unfavorably upon the judiciary of the state or brings the judiciary into disrepute or that may adversely affect the administration of justice in this state.

The Board of Judicial Conduct can investigate claims made against any judge in the state, including appellate, trial, general sessions, probate, juvenile, municipal and senior judges as well as claims commissioners and candidates for judicial office.

There are 16 members of the Board. Five are appointed by the four judicial conferences in the state, four are appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, four are appointed by the Speaker of the Senate, two are appointed by the Governor, and one is appointed by the Tennessee Supreme Court. Eight are current or former judges, six are neither current or former judges or attorneys, and two are attorneys. Read about the members.

The board has broad powers to investigate, hear, and determine charges sufficient to warrant sanctions or removal, and to carry out its duties.

The Board of Judicial Conduct, and its predecessors, file monthly and quarterly reports with the Legislature.  View reports.

Learn more about the Board of Judicial Conduct

File a complaint about a judge

All complaints must be received in writing, must contain the name of the complainant, must be signed by the complainant, and must allege specific facts related to the alleged misconduct or incapacity of the judge in question. Learn more about how to file a complaint and how complaints are investigated.

Public Cases and Disciplinary Actions

Public cases are matters in which the Disciplinary Counsel has filed formal charges against a judge. Formal charges are filed after the Disciplinary Counsel has completed a full investigation of the complaint, and the Board of Judicial Conduct's Investigative Panel has reviewed and approved the Disciplinary Counsel’s recommendation to file formal charges.

A public disciplinary action, such as a public reprimand or public censure, is a finding by the Board of Judicial Conduct that a judge violated a rule of judicial conduct.

A public reprimand is a letter that details the finding of judicial misconduct and lists reasons why such conduct is improper and a discredit to the judiciary.

A public censure is also a letter that details the findings of judicial misconduct, but is stronger than a public reprimand. A public censure may also include a requirement that a judge follow a specified course of corrective action.

Click here to view public disciplinary actions since 2008.