United States District Court for the Northern District of California

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Jurisdiction and Location
– The United States District Court for the Northern District of California has jurisdiction over counties such as Alameda, Contra Costa, and Santa Clara.
– The court has courtrooms in Eureka, Oakland, San Francisco, and San Jose.
– It is headquartered in San Francisco.
– Cases from this district are appealed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
– Major federal lawsuits involving defendants in East Asia and the high tech sector are often filed in this district.

Types of Cases
– The Northern District of California is known for handling cases related to patent law and intellectual property law.
– It also deals with antitrust law, securities law, and technology law.
– Cases in the semiconductor, telecommunications, and software industries are common.
– Cybersecurity, internet law, and computer law are also part of the district’s caseload.
– The district is a hub for class actions and multi-district litigation.

– California was admitted as a state on September 9, 1850, and initially divided into two districts, the Northern and Southern.
– The Act of August 31, 1852 made the Judge of the Northern District also the Judge of the Southern District.
– The Southern District of California was abolished in 1866, creating a single district called the United States District Court for the District of California.
– Twenty years later, the Southern District of California was re-created.
– On March 18, 1966, the Eastern and Central Districts were created from portions of the Northern and Southern Districts.

Former Judges
– Ogden Hoffman Jr., William W. Morrow, and Adolphus Frederic St. Sure were judges in the Northern District of California.
– Oliver Deveta Hamlin Jr., Sherrill Halbert, and William H. Orrick Jr. also served as judges.
– Cecil F. Poole, Eugene F. Lynch, and John P. Vukasin Jr. were former judges in the district.
– Charles A. Legge, D. Lowell Jensen, and Fern M. Smith were judges from the past.
– Vaughn Walker, James Ware, and Barbara A. Caulfield also served as judges.

Chief Judges and Seat Assignments
– The office of chief judge rotates among the district court judges.
– To be chief, a judge must have been in active service for at least one year and be under the age of 65.
– A vacancy is filled by the judge highest in seniority among the qualified judges.
– The chief judge serves for a term of seven years or until age 70.
– The Northern District of California has multiple seats, with different judges serving in each seat over the years.

The United States District Court for the Northern District of California (in case citations, N.D. Cal.) is the federal United States district court whose jurisdiction comprises the following counties of California: Alameda, Contra Costa, Del Norte, Humboldt, Lake, Marin, Mendocino, Monterey, Napa, San Benito, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, and Sonoma. The court hears cases in its courtrooms in Eureka, Oakland, San Francisco, and San Jose. It is headquartered in San Francisco.

United States District Court for the Northern District of California
(N.D. Cal.)
LocationPhillip Burton Federal Building
More locations
Appeals toNinth Circuit
EstablishedAugust 5, 1886
Chief JudgeRichard Seeborg
Officers of the court
U.S. AttorneyIsmail Ramsey
U.S. MarshalMark Kolc (acting)

Cases from the Northern District of California are appealed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (except for patent claims and claims against the U.S. government under the Tucker Act, which are appealed to the Federal Circuit).

Because it covers San Francisco and Silicon Valley, the Northern District of California has become known as the presumptive destination for major federal lawsuits (such as large class actions and multi-district litigation) involving defendants based in East Asia and the high tech sector. These cases usually involve patent law and intellectual property law (such as copyright law and DMCA issues as well as trademark law and trade secret law) - especially in the semiconductor, telecommunications and software industries and other high technology areas, antitrust law, securities law, and technology law in general (e.g., cybersecurity, Internet law, computer law and cases involving software).

There are three court divisions.

The Oakland Division, covering Alameda and Contra Costa counties.

The San Francisco Division, covering Del Norte, Humboldt, Lake, Mendocino, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, and Sonoma counties.

The San Jose Division, covering Monterey, San Benito, Santa Clara, and Santa Cruz counties.

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