Fourth Judicial District - District Judge
Honorable Timothy Schutz
Retention Year: 2018
Recommendation: Meets Performance Standard
The Fourth Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance unanimously (7-0) agrees that District Judge Timothy Schutz MEETS PERFORMANCE STANDARDS.
Judge Schutz was appointed to the El Paso County District Court in 2010. He received his undergraduate degree from Moorhead State University in 1984 in Psychology and Political Science. Judge Schutz graduated from the University of North Dakota law school in 1987. After law school, Judge Schutz was in private practice in Colorado Springs concentrating his practice in the areas of civil litigation, intellectual property and in the resolution of land use disputes. Judge Schutz served as President of the El Paso County Bar Association in 2004. He has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Colorado Legal Aid Foundation, and served on the Judicial Performance Commission. Additionally, he has been involved with the Pikes Peak Pro Bono Project, the Access to Justice Commission, American Inns of Court, and volunteers with Habitat for Humanity. The Commission commends Judge Schutz for his extensive volunteer work in our community.
The Commission interviewed Judge Schutz, observed him in Court, and reviewed his self-evaluation, a number of the Judge’s written decisions, and responses from attorneys and non-attorneys to a survey regarding the performance of Judge Schutz on the El Paso County District Court. Of attorneys responding to the survey, 79% answered yes, Judge Schutz meets performance standards, 13% answered no, does not meet performance standards and 8% had no opinion. Of the non-attorneys responding to the survey 78% answered yes, Judge Schutz meets performance standards, 13% answered no, does not meet performance standards and 9% had no opinion. Since 2016, Judge Schutz’s docket has consisted of domestic relations cases, and dependency and neglect cases. Previously, Judge Schutz handled civil and criminal cases.
In response to the survey, attorneys found Judge Schutz to be above average in the areas of case management, demeanor and diligence. Judge Schutz scored at about the average of other District Court Judges in the areas of application and knowledge of the law, and communications. Non-attorneys scored Judge Schutz slightly lower than attorneys. The Commission observes that these lower scores may result from the fact that Judge Schutz handles cases in the emotionally charged areas of divorce and dependency and neglect. Notwithstanding the slight variance in scoring by attorneys and non-attorneys, both attorneys and non-attorneys think Judge Schutz meets judicial performance standards. Judges on the Colorado Court of Appeals rated Judge Schutz’s overall performance as a District Judge to be excellent. Judge Schutz is particularly adept at explaining his rulings to the parties. Additionally, his written opinions are thorough and extremely well written. The Commission believes that Judge Schutz has and is performing well, and that he meets performance standards for an El Paso County District Court Judge.