Hon. James F. Holderman See Rating Details
District Judge See Comments
N.D.Ill.  
Average Rating:7.2 - 13 rating(s)
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Ratings

*Temperament:   (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
*Scholarship:   (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
*Industriousness:   (1=Not at all industrious,10=Highly industrious)
*Ability to Handle Complex Litigation:    (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
*Punctuality:    (1=Chronic`y Late,10=Always on Time)
*Evenhandedness in Civil Litigation:    (1=Demonstrates Bias,10=Entirely Evenhanded)
*Evenhandedness in Criminal Litigation:   (1=Demonstrates Bias,10=Entirely Evenhanded)
Flexibility In Scheduling   (1=Completely Inflexible,10=Very Flexible)
General Inclination Regarding Bail (1=Pro-Defense,10=Pro-Government)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases, Pre-Trial:   (1=Pro-Defense,10=Pro-Government)
Involvement in Civil Settlement Discussions:   (1=Least Involved,10=Most Involved)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases, Trial:    (1=Pro-Defense,10=Pro-Government)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases, Sentencing:    (1=Most Lenient,10=Most Harsh)
Typical Discount Off Guidelines for Cooperators:    (1=10%,10=100%)
  Items marked with (*) are averaged into the displayed overall rating
Comments



What others have said about Hon. James F. Holderman


Comments


Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 13413
Rating:8.8
Comments:
Very smart and will work harder than any other judge in trying a case. If you want to handle litigation in a non-serious manner, go to a different judge.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 12600
Rating:8.4
Comments:
Judge Hoderman is a fair, nice man, but WOW, can he blow his top when the government, or, for that matter, anyone try's to pull a "fast one" on him or their opposition.. It's nice that there's at least one judge in the Northern District that doesn't put up with the government's holyier-than-thou crap or let them run over people. I say this as a civil attorney that has just had the opportunity over three decades to watch him handle his criminal call befor he gets to his civil call.

Every judge has their shortcomings and foibles and Judge Holderman, but what he does have, that's often missing is his peers is authentic integrity and decency.

He's always been patient, fair and respectful to me, and as far as i can determine, those who are straight with him.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 10199
Rating:9.8
Comments:
Ok. Everybody knows about this judge's "issue," so my comment -- one way or another on the "temperament" thing -- will add nothing to the discourse. However, this guy is smart, he actually reads the pleadings, and will rule on pending civil matters. He knows more about the rules of evidence than just about anyone else in the building, and he runs a damn good trial. Does he lose his temper? Sure, but what judge over there doesn't? I just hope the guy takes it easy, so he doesn't have a stroke on the bench. Because at the rate he's going, it's not a question of if, but when.
Chill out, Chief. The civil docket needs you.

Civil Litigation - Govt.

Comment #: 8657
Rating:4.4
Comments:
Judge Holderman picks one side or the other to torture. I've been on both sides. And when I was on the down-side, it was a horrendous experience.

Mentally ill? Quite likely. Utterly unable to contain himself when annoyed even slightly. Willing to waste large amounts of time vindicating his annoyance, which he always seems to take quite personally. The sick thing, or maybe it's the sad thing, is he seems to know it. Sometimes he makes a heroic attempt to reign himself in, but it usually fails. You can see him struggling.

Biased, and willing to show it? Darned right. He's twice, once in my presence, stated in civil pre-trial conferences announced that he's going to give the other side anything it wants on post-trial fees because he thinks so highly of the attorney involved.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 7650
Rating:4.4
Comments:
This guy is a nightmare. I once tried a case in his courtroom and his behavior was cringe-worthy 70% of the time. The other 30% of the time he appeared to be medicated. His biases are readily apparent and he seems incapable of treating attorneys representing litigants he does not like with the basic respect that should be afforded to all human beings. Moreover, while he is certainly very intelligent and a potentially capable jurist, at times his biases affects his rulings - which is completely unacceptable. I agree with the previous comment that he is an embarrassment to the federal bench. He should not be on the bench period, let alone holding the title of chief judge.

Litigant

Comment #: 7613
Rating:1.0
Comments:
This is the most biased judge I have ever seen. He has made disparaging comments at side bar within earshot of the jury. I am looking into a formal complaint.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 6487
Rating:7.8
Comments:
I like Big Jim, but do not make him angry. Like David Banner, you would not like him when he is angry. I decline to further opine about his temperament. I do appreciate that he does not treat the civil docket like a sick stepchild and will actually do something with his civil cases.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 6417
Rating:7.7
Comments:
I tried a civil case before Holderman a few years ago. His temperment changed from day to day. Each day he seemed like a different judge. But there's no doubt that he's smart and fair.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 5539
Rating:8.8
Comments:
Sure, he has a temper. But don't most trial lawyers? A wise old lawyer once told me that "if you don't anger the judge at least once during a trial, you're probably not doing your job." I've done my job with Judge Holderman, on both sides of the aisle, and incurred his wrath. But he's an excellent judge. He calls 'em as he sees 'em, and he usually sees 'em right. He runs a tight ship, and gives everyone a fair shake. And he's got a good load of gray matter between his ears.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 4159
Rating:2.4
Comments:
Appearing in Judge Holderhurt's courtroom is a nightmare - you never know whether he's taken his meds, and often it simply doesn't matter - it's a good bet that on any given day someone is going to incur his wrath and get reamed. If cameras were allowed in federal courtrooms, he would be impeached in a week. He is a disgrace and embarrassment to the federal bench and the 7th Cir should have taken his docket away at least 10 years ago.

Criminal Defense Lawyer

Comment #: 3970
Rating:5.1
Comments:
Judge Holderman is clearly insane and has been for at least 15 years.

Criminal Defense Lawyer

Comment #: 2950
Rating:9.4
Comments:
A good judge who is now a great chief judge. The government does not get that automatic pass that some judges feel duty bound to give. Treats everyone fairly an with respect. A pleasure to appear before.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 2616
Rating:9.8
Comments:
Great Judge