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Schingle, Michael 2006 Evaluation


Thirteenth Judicial District - Morgan County Court Judge

Honorable Michael J. Schingle

Retention Year: 2006
Recommendation: Retain


2006 Retention Survey Report (PDF)


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The Thirteenth Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance unanimously recommends that Judge Michael J. Schingle BE RETAINED.

Judge Schingle was appointed to the Morgan County Court bench on July 1, 2000. He is a full-time judge and presides over civil, traffic and misdemeanor cases. As the only county court judge in Morgan County, Judge Schingle is responsible for more than 5,500 cases per year. Before taking the bench, Judge Schingle was a private attorney in general practice with an emphasis in criminal litigation.

Judge Schingle is the president of the Sunrise Optimist Club, where he has been a member since 1981. He believes that community involvement is essential to the judge’s role. Judge Schingle is also involved in the legal community, and has served as President of both the Morgan County local bar association and the Thirteenth Judicial District Bar Association.

The Commission reviewed the results of evaluations of Judge Schingle from attorneys and non-attorneys, including written comments from both groups. The Commission also interviewed Judge Schingle in person and considered the judge's written self-evaluation. Survey respondents gave Judge Schingle above-average ratings for communications, fairness and demeanor. They praised his courtesy, impartiality, empathy and personable demeanor.

Judge Schingle told the Commission that he hopes to improve his speed in issuing orders on motions and written decisions in small claims cases. The number of jury trials in his jurisdiction has increased dramatically in the past few years, leaving him and his staff less time for paperwork. The recent merger of Morgan County’s District Court Clerk’s office and County Court Clerk’s office was also an administrative challenge.

Eighty-five percent of attorneys and ninety-two percent of non-attorneys surveyed recommended that Judge Schingle be retained. Ten percent of attorneys recommended that he not be retained, and five percent of attorneys were undecided. Four percent of non-attorneys recommended that Judge Schingle not be retained, and four percent of non-attorneys were undecided.