Summary: S.1638 — 110th Congress (2007-2008)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Reported to Senate with amendment(s) (03/10/2008)

Federal Judicial Salary Restoration Act of 2008 - (Sec. 2) Increases the salaries of: (1) judges of U.S. District courts; (2) judges of the U.S. Court of International Trade; (3) judges of the U.S. courts of appeals; (4) associate justices of the U.S. Supreme Court; and (5) the Chief Justice of the United States.

(Sec. 3) Repeals the prohibition on judiciary salary increases.

(Sec. 4) Amends the federal judicial code to increase from 80 to 84 the sum of age and years of service a federal judge or justice must meet to retire on salary. (Retains the current age and years of service sum of 80 where the judge or justice retains the office but retires from regular active service.)

Increases the workload-equivalent requirement from three to four months for senior judges to have met in order to retire and retain their salary.

(Sec. 5) Revises requirements for annual salary adjustments.

(Sec. 6) Requires an earned income-related reduction, according to a specified formula, in the retirement annuities of justices or judges.

(Sec. 7) Prohibits a judicial officer from accepting a gift of an honorary membership with a value of more than $50 in any calendar year.

(Sec. 8) Requires judicial officers to make certain disclosures with respect to travel..

Amends the Ethics in Government Act of 1978 to require each report by a judicial officer under such Act to be publicly available.

(Sec. 9) Applies to the U.S. Supreme Court the Regulations of the Judicial Conference of the United States Under Title VI of the Ethics Reform Act of 1989 Concerning Outside Earned Income, Honoraria, and Outside Employment and under Title III of the Act Concerning Gifts.

(Sec. 10) Prohibits a federal judge or justice from accepting any single trip or gift, including outside earned income, valued at more than $2,000, except from: (1) the federal government or a state or local government (other than a public educational institution); or (2) a federal, state, or local bar association, a subject-matter bar association, a judicial association, the Judicial Division of the American Bar Association, or the National Judicial College.

Prohibits a federal judge or justice from accepting any travel, food, lodging, reimbursement, outside earned income, or anything that would be considered a gift under such Regulations in connection with attending, as a speaker or participant, a program, a significant purpose of which is the education of U.S. federal or state judges, except from the same sources.

Exempts from these prohibitions any trip approved by the Department of State to promote the rule of law or developing legal systems in foreign countries, if the reimbursement for that trip is provided only for travel, meals, and lodging expenses.

Sets the maximum aggregate value of all travel, gifts, and other regulated things accepted by a federal judge or justice within a single year at $20,000, adjusted annually for inflation.

(Sec. 11) Extends to active and senior judges of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims coverage of the semiannual report of the Director of the Administrative Office of the United States Courts on: (1) the number of motions pending for over six months (and the names of related cases); (2) the number of bench trials submitted for over six months (and the names of the cases involved); and (3) the number and names of cases that have not been terminated within three years after filing.

(Sec. 12) Increases from $15 to $75 the fee paid by the Judicial Conference of the United States to bankruptcy trustees serving on cases.

Declares that no additional fee or cost charged to individual debtors or their attorneys shall be assessed to provide funding, directly or indirectly, for any of the $60 increase in such trustee payments.

(Sec. 14) Authorizes appropriations.