We have relatively new judicial officer sitting in Dept. D of the Pomona family law court. Many were relieved when Commissioner Rocky Crabb left family law to assist in other non-family law departments. Commissioner Crabb was replaced by Judge Wesley Hsu. Judge Wesley Hsu is a former Assistant Attorney General with no prior family law experience. Judge Wesley Hsu formally joined us in the beginning of 2018. Judge Hsu, prior to taking the bench, sat in and observed all of the then existing judicial officers for a period of two weeks which included Commissioner Crabb and some of the procedure which Commissioner Crabb followed are seen in how Judge Hsu handles his courtroom. With the being said, here is my behind the scenes view of this courtroom.
Judge Hsu typically takes the bench at approximately 9:15 a.m. every morning. You may ask why does he take the bench at 9:15 a.m. when I am calendared to start at 8:30 a.m.? The primary reason for this late start is that the huge lines to get into the Pomona courthouse as there is only a single entrance to the Courthouse for the general public which is located on the East side of the building. Another reason is that Pomona only has 4 antiquated elevators (one is usually not working), and no accessible stairs. When Judge Hsu takes the bench, he does an informal call of the calendar to see “whose hear and who and what is ready”. He calls the matters in order as they are set forth on the calendar located outside of the courtroom and people state their name. DON’T reply with “here” as this is upsetting. State your name and then here. Like all other courtrooms, interpreter matters are called first (assuming the interpreter is in the courtroom). Judge Hsu then calls relatively quick matters (stipulation, trial setting or request for continuances). This is followed by cases were people have an attorney followed by the self-represented litigants.
I have frequently appeared in front of Judge Hsu on cases and I have found that, overall, he is fair in his rulings. He gives both parties the opportunity to present their case to him. All else being equal, I have found him to be a proponent of shared custodial time between parents. Judge recognizes the importance of the parent-child relationship regardless of gender and with those pushing to limit the other parent’s custodial time to every other weekend, you will likely not prevail. A frequent approach I have seen Judge Hsu is to ask for a parent’s work schedule in developing an appropriate parenting plan. As such, if you have flexibility in your work schedule or come to Judge Hsu’s court and provide a parenting schedule to him based on your work schedule and availability, I believe he will reward you for this additional preparation. As for support, I also believe that Judge Hsu follows the Dissomaster and again considers both parties respective incomes as set forth in their Income & Expense Declarations.
A final observation of Judge Hsu courtroom is the ruling on Ex Partes. Judge Hsu, like his predecessor, rules on Ex Partes (emergency hearings) in chambers. The clerk receives the Ex Parte pleadings, has you wait in the hallway, and provides them to the Judge Hsu who both reads and rules on your Ex Parte request in chambers without taking the bench. That is, you receive your paperwork back with either a “denied” “granted in part” or “granted”. Judge Hsu typically denies Ex Parte requests for trivial matters such as an upcoming holiday or other non-imminent threat of harm etc.
If you have a case in Judge Hsu’s court, please give Covina attorney, Paul Eads a call.