Hon. Melissa R. McCormick See Rating Details
Superior Court
Orange County
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Attorney Average Rating:   5.1 - 5 rating(s)
Non-Attorney Average Rating:   2.0 - 1 rating(s)
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Only items marked with (*) are averaged into the displayed overall rating.

General Rating Criteria

* Temperament (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
* Scholarship (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
* Industriousness (1=Not at all industrious,10=Highly industrious)
* Ability to Handle Complex Litigation (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
* Punctuality (1=Chronically Late,10=Always on Time)
* General Ability to Handle Pre-Trial Matters (1=Not all Able, 10=Extremely Able)
* General Ability as a Trial Judge (1=Not all Able, 10=Extremely Able)
Flexibility In Scheduling (1=Completely Inflexible,10=Very Flexible)

Criminal Rating Criteria (if applicable)

* Evenhandedness in Criminal Litigation (1=Demonstrates Bias,10=Entirely Evenhanded)
General Inclination Regarding Bail (1=Pro-Defense,10=Pro-Government)
Involvement in Plea Discussions (1=Not at all Involved, 10=Very Involved)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases Pretrial Stage (1=Pro-prosecution,10=Pro-defense)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases Trial Stage (1=Pro-prosecution,10=Pro-defense)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases Sentencing Stage (1=Pro-prosecution,10=Pro-defense)

Civil Rating Criteria (if applicable)

* Evenhandedness in Civil Litigation (1=Not at all Evenhanded,10=Entirely Evenhanded)
Involvement in Settlement Discussions (1=Not at all Involved,10=Very Involved)
General Inclination (1=Pro-defendant, 10=Pro-plaintiff)

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What others have said about Hon. Melissa R. McCormick


Criminal Defense Lawyer

Comment #: CA52682
Rating:Not Rated
The 11/1/2023 comment was probably written by the judge's clerk. Does anyone else agree?

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: CA51467
Rating:Not Rated
She knows the law well and she reads all my papers. She is fair and detailed about her ruling. She spends time giving out detailed instructions. If you are lazy and do not even bother to read her instructions, you will keep on hitting the wall. Her clerk is very helpful and knowledgeable about my issues. I was able to schedule my hearing with his help.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: CA48664
Above average analytical ability. Below average judicial temperament. Strangely unfriendly courtroom staff.

Not evenhanded. Judge McCormick will grant relief to one party and deny relief to another party based on identical facts and circumstances. And she will not reconsider any preconceived notion or tentative ruling.

But she will read your papers in detail, and she understands the law.

Overall, it is not a pleasure to appear in her courtroom. But do not get too excited about filing your 170.6. You could do worse.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: CA48515
Second or third worst judge I've ever appeared before. Judge Derek Hunt was the worst and he was publicly disciplined and recently left OCSC. I agree with review below "probably best to 170.6 and take your chances elsewhere."

One of the most passive aggressive and inexcusable demands she makes is requiring parties to serve hard copies to her department every time lawyers file any papers. That's possibly ok if you work close to court, and have nothing else to do but make hard copies that she doesn't look at anyway. Such an absurd demand unnecessarily increases the costs of litigation for all parties and can cost hundreds of dollars of unnecsesary third party service costs and fees.

She is also lazy, fails to do her work, and is fully inflexible. She has templates to deny nearly all ex partes and her court is painful to appear in. She should receive remedial training or get off the bench. Her rulings are non-sensical, arbritatry, and capricious.

Under her direction, her clerk Yu is equally unhelpful and deflects all questions.

I can't think of a single positive thing to say except it's a 50/50 shot she takes your side for completely illogical reasons which have nothing to do with the law.

I was equally surprised by the positive rating here she had and would agree she likely caused those ratings to be posted. She's a very unhappy person and seems to
loath interacting with attorneys and litigants.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: CA22368
The latest review on July 1 was probably written by the judge herself. The previous two reviews are more accurate. Just go on benchreporter, look up the tentative history and you'll not only see she decides matters the same way over and over; you'll also note the same templates are used over and over! No way to argue her off the tentative. Provisional remedies are rarely if ever granted, and certainly not ex parte. An evident pro defense bias, actually apologized to defense counsel when relief for my plaintiff client was mandatory. If you're defense counsel, you'll be fine in this department as long as your particular case doesn't require any provisional remedies or other ruling requiring judicial fortitude. If you're plaintiff, probably best to 170.6 and take your chances elsewhere.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: CA21484
I was very impressed with Judge McCormick, a hard working, industrious, fair and knowledgeable judge who follows the law. She has excellent judicial temperament and is flexible in scheduling.


Comment #: CA13317
What a joke! Totally ignored proper evidence I may lose my home because of her not considering the facts of my case Someone needs to challenge her judgeship

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: CA13048
Overall, she is a pretty good judge, but she just will not take a stand against bad litigation behavior. She is intelligent and industrious. She gives the appearance of being "no-nonsense," but then fails to assert her authority and put proper controls on abusive attorneys and parties. She appears to make a genuine effort to be fair and to let everyone have their say. But in striving to give tempered rulings, the practical effect is to allow abusive parties and attorneys to run wild. Since it is usually civil defense attorneys that have an interest in protracting litigation and filing abusive motions, they seem to be the side that benefits from her tendency to indulge bad behavior. In my personal experience, I have had two cases with her where the defense attorneys were out of control, taking absurd positions, filing pointless motions and generally trying to endlessly delay very simple, straight-forward cases. She just would not take a stand and put a stop to the gamesmanship. For example, she let the defense attorneys move trial dates, take multi-day depositions, file over-sized briefs and tolerated discovery motions on very petty, faux-disputes about totally inconsequential matters. Otherwise, she is a good judge and you could do far, far worse.