Definition - What does Senior Status mean?
Instead of retiring, a U.S. federal court judge who has reached 65 years of age, and attained 15 years of judicial experience, may opt for senior status. Senior status allows a judge to retain their office, reduce their workload by three-quarters, and still earn a full federal judge’s salary.
Justipedia explains Senior Status
Allowing judges to opt for senior status has benefits for the federal court system:
- It gives judges an incentive to remain in the federal judiciary while building up experience. (The court system simply works better with more experienced judges.)
- Senior status allows judges to remain in practice while opening up vacancies for younger judges who can begin developing experience in the same way that a senior judge has.
Senior status makes federal judgeships very attractive positions for bright, publicly minded attorneys.