Hon. Katherine Polk Failla See Rating Details
District Judge See Comments
Average Rating:8.6 - 6 rating(s)
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*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

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What others have said about Hon. Katherine Polk Failla


Criminal Defense Lawyer

Comment #: 25386
Rating:Not Rated
Judge Failla is a formidable judge who commands respect in her courtroom. Very hard working and knowledgeable and tries her utmost to make legally sound decisions. Judge Failla presided over a jury trial in which I was the plaintiff's attorney. It was like undergoing "lawyer boot camp!" Be warned, however: when she sets a deadline, she is very loathed to extend it.Judge Failla is very courteous to court staff and jurors, but cracks with the whip with attorneys who she deems to be insufficiently prepared and/or not as knowledgeable or as experienced as she would like them to be. I detected some favorable predisposition towards the large law firm(s), but unfortunately this is common and to be expected given that most judges come from that background.

Criminal Defense Lawyer

Comment #: 24046
I was quite impressed with Judge Failla's demeanor and compassion during a recent plea. She was well prepared, thoughtful and courteous. Her staff as likewise kind and helpful.

There was no doubt however that Judge Failla was not one to mess with. She commanded a presence in her courtroom that showed she was in complete control. There was no bias whatsoever towards the Government or the defendant.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 23098
Her background may be primarily criminal, but she displays better knowledge of the applicable law in the civil cases I've had before her than most judges with civil backgrounds. It's obvious she comes incredibly well prepared--you can't slip anything by her. She's fair. Just don't ask for extensions. When she gives deadlines, she means them.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 22642
Truly brilliant! I tried a case before Judge Failla last year. She was extremely well prepared. It was clear she read every deposition and reviewed every exhibit carefully. Her demeanor was always pleasant and she anticipated issues before they arose. Judge Failla also gave careful thought to all the legal issues that were presented and was not afraid to admit she was wrong about her first inclination to rule. Her humility and dedication to getting it right make her welcome addition to bench. It won't be a surprise if she is quickly elevated to the Circuit.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 22119
Civil Litigation - Private

She is very well prepared but very bias and pro large corporate and anti small business houses. Likes to throw out cases at summary judgments even if there are evidence for jury trial in complex civil cases. Lack experience for complex civil cases as she was a criminal lawyer.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: 21278
I appeared, along with my defense team, before the Honorable Katherine Polk Failla in a civil matter. The defense team and I have over 50 years’ worth of experience combined in the federal court system. We have tried over fifty federal cases; therefore, we believe that our comments about this judge are accurate and worthy of note. Throughout our civil trial, Judge Failla conducted her courtroom with extreme professionalism and expertise, as if she had been on the bench for decades. It was obvious that Judge Failla intently reviewed each party’s motions, as evident from her thoughtful, legally analytic, and factually precise decisions. While we did not prevail on every motion, she provided valid reasoning for her decisions and always abided by the true letter of the law. Judge Failla knows the Federal Rules of Evidence by heart, and applied them fairly to both sides. This judge is prepared and has an amazing ability to comprehend the facts and apply them to the law; hence, preparation before this court is a must. It is also important to know the details of the facts and law surrounding your case. She is a very stern, but fair, judge. I would advise counsel appearing before Judge Failla to be professional and follow the court’s local and individual rules. If you are not prepared, this judge will know immediately. Therefore, my advice to all lawyers appearing before this court is to diligently prepare, because this court will appreciate your preparation. If you are not prepared, then you will be doing a disservice to yourself and your client, and you will be exposed for your lack of knowledge of your case and/or of the law. Overall, it was a pleasure to have a case before Judge Failla.