Canyon descending through the Sandia Mountains

Explore Section

Second Judicial District Court Overview

The Second Judicial District Court is the largest court of original jurisdiction in the State of New Mexico. 

The Court has approximately 350 employees.  Due to the number of cases filed and the complexity of the cases managed, the Court is diversified in divisions to best meet the needs of the public.


The administration division is located on the third floor of the courthouse.  The Court Executive Officer/Clerk of the Second District Court has responsibility for the non-judicial divisions of the court.  These consist of civil, criminal, domestic relations, children’s court, and all the programs and support services of the Court.  The administrative functions include: maintaining and securing all records, dockets and evidence; scheduling cases; providing direct courtroom support; supervising court non-judicial personnel; managing juror services; ensuring division compliance with statutory rules; providing technical assistance and managerial support to diverse court committees; and rendering information and organizational assistance to the Chief Judge.  Also included is the preparation and monitoring of the Court’s budget and liaison between the Court and various agencies. Court Administration.

Adult Drug Court

The Drug Court program exists to provide drug and alcohol treatment to selected offenders/individuals who are identified as having substance abuse issues and who are under a form of “court supervision.”  Successful participation in Drug Court provides individuals with the tools to lead a “drug-free” lifestyle and also positively affects one’s legal status.

Archives and Records

The Archives and Records Division is responsible for developing and implementing a more conclusive method of preserving the record and for providing ample expansion space for new filings.  The staff must prepare, index, scan, link and proofread the case information for every case and document filed with the Court.  The division is responsible for final preparation of the permanent historical record.  In addition to preparing files for scanning, the division is also responsible for the management of files that have been previously microfilmed.  The staff will assist the public and court staff with the viewing of files stored on film.

Staff Attorneys

The Court utilizes the unique skills of attorneys in several key areas of the Court.  The On-Records Appeal and Criminal Court staff attorneys are available to assist the criminal judges in any trial matters coming before them.  The staff attorneys to the civil division function primarily as support staff to the civil judges and domestic relations judges.

Child Support Hearing Officer Division

The child support hearing officer division was established in 1988 under the provisions of the Federal Child Support Enforcement Act.  The Child Support Hearing Officer Division is responsible for the docketing and disposition of the State of New Mexico Department of Human Services Child Support Enforcement Division (CSED) caseload.  In addition, the Hearing Officers assist the Court by hearing and disposing of child support cases and paternity and support cases between private parties. Child Support Hearing Officer Division.

Children’s Court Divisions

Children’s Court Hearing Officers:  The division was established in 1993 to assist the Children’s Court Judges in handling delinquency, abuse/neglect, and adoption cases.  In addition, the court utilizes a hearing officer to hear mental health issues.

Juvenile Drug Court Program:  The Juvenile Drug Program (JDC) was established in 1998.  This program is an intensive nine-month supervision program for nonviolent juvenile offenders that provide an alternative to the traditional method of probation and incarceration. Juvenile Drug Court Program.

Mental Health Hearing Officer:  Mental health civil communities and treatment guardian hearings are held at the University of New Mexico Mental Health Center in the mornings by the mental health hearing officer.

Youth and Family Counseling:  The Youth and Family Counseling Program (YFC) provides therapeutic intervention to youth and their families with the goal of reducing recidivism and deterring delinquency.  The Court provides this service to the public free of charge. Youth and Family Counseling.

Court Reporter/Court Monitor Division

The court reporters are responsible for taking the record during court proceedings.  The court monitors currently take taped or digitized recordings of hearings and trials for the domestic relations cases, domestic violence cases, mental health cases and children’s court cases. Court Reporter/Court Monitor Division.

Domestic Violence Division

In 1987 the New Mexico Legislature passed the Family Violence Protection Act.  Under this Act, a victim of domestic violence can petition the Court for an Order of Protection.  If granted, the Order of Protection prohibits the batterer from coming to the victim’s home or work or contacting the victim in any way. Domestic Violence Division.

Court Clinic

The Court Clinic provides services to all district court judges, hearing officers and special commissioners at the Court.  The purpose of the court clinic is to provide services to individuals involved in custody or time-sharing disputes as ordered by the judges of Family Court, Civil Court and Children’s Court, special commissioners for domestic violence or child support hearing officers and Competency to Stand Trial Evaluations for Metropolitan and District Courts. Court Clinic.

Court Interpreters

Court interpreters provide interpreting (spoken) and translating (written) services for the Court. Court Interpreters.

Criminal Cases:  Services are provided when requested for Limited English Proficient (LEP) defendants during court proceedings.  In Children’s Court, services are provided to defendants and parents, not only during judicial proceedings, but also during drug court, counseling, multi-family services, etc.

Civil Cases:  Services are provided in a civil case when the judge orders it an indigent case and an interpreter is requested, including in-court proceedings and other court-ordered proceedings, such as arbitration, etc.

Domestic Violence Cases:  Services are provided when requested for LEP participants in domestic violence hearings.

Jurors and Witnesses:  Services are provided when requested during jury orientation, jury selection, and all stages (including deliberation) of civil and criminal trials in which an LEP juror is selected, as well as for LEP witnesses during testimony.

Fiscal Services

Fiscal Services monitors and maintains over $25 million in operating budgets which include the Court’s general fund, capital outlay budget, child support hearing officer grant, the mediation, arbitration and court automated transcripts funds and various adult and juvenile drug court grants which are federal, state or local funds.  The division also maintains litigant funds that are deposited into the State Treasurer’s Local Government Investment Pool. Fiscal Services.

Human Resources Department

Human Resources (HR) handles all hiring, termination, payroll, benefits, training and discipline for employees of the Court.  The HR Division also a dedicated trainer for the implementation and success of continuing adult education in quality service, Judicial Studies, and support of educational/training needs of the Court as a whole.  In addition, the trainer is responsible for orientation and training of new clerks. Human Resources Department.

Information Technology Division

The Information Technology Division at District Court supports a wide variety of servers and operating systems.  The staff of ten supports 30 Servers, which includes Windows 2003/2008/2012 servers, UNIX/LINUX server systems and approximately 500 Windows 7 Desktops, 100 Scanners and 180 printers.  They are responsible for the support of 70 different applications and computers at four different sites.  The helpdesk responds to an average 8,000 calls yearly.  Many of the Court’s applications have been developed by the in-house application developers, customized to the Court’s clients’ needs.

Jury Division

The division is responsible for two distinct areas pertaining to jurors.  The first area is the Grand Jury, and the function of the jury division is to convene three panels of grand jurors every three months to evaluate accusations against persons charged with crime.  The second area of jury involves the Petit Jury.  The clerks in the division are responsible for processing the summons to gather people from which potential jurors will be chosen. Jury Division.

On-Record Appeals

The division is responsible for appeals of DWI and domestic violence cases from Metropolitan Court and for appeals from MVD license revocation hearings held in Bernalillo County.

Purchasing Division

The division is responsible to process daily mail for the Court (incoming and outgoing), furnishing supplies and keeping such stocked for courthouse staff, in addition to researching and keeping up to date on new technology that will best enable court staff to produce quality work product.

Center for Self Help and Dispute Resolution

The Center for Self Help and Dispute Resolution provides services to those persons who wish to represent themselves without an attorney and provides Alternative Methods of Dispute Resolution (ADR) with the goal of the early, fair, efficient, cost-effective and informal resolution of disputes through court ordered settlement facilitation and arbitration. Center for Self Help and Dispute Resolution.

Special Services Division

The Special Services Division is tasked with managing appeals to the higher courts, which includes the preparation of the records proper and management of transcripts awaiting transmittal to the appelate court.  The division is also responsible for managing exhibits from all case types. Special Services Division.