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California Practice Materials

Local Court Rules

The Judicial Council of California has the authority to promulgate rules of practice and procedure as long as these rules are not inconsistent with law.  California Rules of Court 10.20 through 10.22 define the rulemaking process.  The council also submits recommendations to the state legislature on modifications to existing statutory laws regarding legal practice and procedure.  Local courts are authorized, under Rule 10.613, to promulgate their own local rules.

Jury Instructions

The Judicial Council, in 2003, approved new civil jury instructions.  California Rule of Court 2.1050 encourages the usage of these instructions.  The rules are commonly referred to as CACI (pronounced "Casey").  The preceding civil jury instructions, called BAJI (for Book of Approved Jury Instructions) is no longer approved by state court rules.  

For criminal jury instructions, the approved instructions are CALCRIM (for California Criminal Jury Instructions).  Its predecessor, CALJIC, is no longer endorsed by the Judicial Council.