Commissioner Diana Kruze — Department 57

Biographical Information

  • Education: U.C. Hastings College of the Law
  • Pre-bench Legal Experience: Partner in Patent Litigation Department, Morrison & Foerster; Judicial Clerkship, Northern District of California; Paralegal, Braverman & Associates (my binder skills are unparalleled)


Judicial Experience

  • Pro tem judge, San Francisco Superior Court, 2016-2019
  • Appointed as Court Commissioner in Contra Costa Superior Court in 2019


Pre-bench Legal Experience

  • Appointed by Mayor to Citizen’s Committee on Community Development, City of San Francisco, 2017-2019
  • Appellate committee for the Judicial Nominees Evaluation Commission (RJNE), 2015-2018
  • Fundraising Chair and board member, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights, 2016-2019
  • Secretary and board member of the Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF), Barristers Club, 2014-2016
  • President of board of directors of Playmates Cooperative Nursery School, 2016-2018
  • Board member of Executive Committee, Intellectual Property Section, BASF, 2016-2019
  • Treasurer and board member of Jewish Bar Association of San Francisco, 2017-2019
  • Firm fundraising chair, Bay Area Urban Debate League, 2011-2019
  • Board member of San Francisco Symphony, Education Committee, 2017-2019
  • Member of BASF, SCCBA, SMCBA, BALIF, Queen’s Bench, California Women Lawyers & ABA


Current Civic & Professional Activities

  • Contra Costa Superior Court Diversity Committee
  • Contra Costa Superior Court Rules Committee
  • California Judges Association, Civil Law and Procedure Committee
  • Judicial Fairness Coalition, Board Member
  • Contra Costa Bar Association, Diversity Committee
  • Jewish Bar Association of San Francisco, Board Member
  • Barely surviving juggling all of the activities that come with having three children under 6 years old


Continuing Legal Education Faculty

  • U.C. Hastings College of the Law, Adjunct Professor, 2016-current
  • Teacher of the Year Award, LWR Department, 2019


Important Published Decision(s)

None yet. Hopefully I will write some good ones soon.


Recent Publications

  • Federal Circuit Imposes New Requirements for Joinder in Pre-AIA Cases (May 2012)
  • Experimental Testing in Patent Litigation, ABA Landslide Magazine (July/August 2009)


Courtroom Policies

Generally, rules from bench. Be respectful of courtroom staff and each other. Trial briefs are greatly appreciated.


Typical Weekly Schedule

  • AM: Traffic trials, unlawful detainer, small claims, arraignments
  • PM: Restraining orders, unlawful detainer, small claims



Allowed with prior court notice; contact clerk in advance to provide phone number; must personally deliver any exhibits to courthouse in Department 57 if you wish documents to be considered as part of the hearing.



Please brief motions in advance of hearing.



They should be clear, concise and supported by current statutory and case law on point and accurately cited.



Counsel is expected to strictly comply with all discovery obligations, and meet and confer before filing any motion.


Settlement Conferences

Mediators generally available in Department 57 to assist. Prior settlement discussions encouraged.



n/a in current assignment.


In Limine Motions

Trial counsel should raise all foreseeable in limine issues, preferably in writing, so they can be resolved before the trial begins.


Voir Dire

Allows advance questionnaires in certain circumstances; may limit time.


Jury Instructions

Submit in advance; in unlawful detainer cases, instructions are due no later than the issue conference date.



Witnesses allowed in court during testimony unless explicitly excluded.



Only in exceptional circumstances and as proscribed by law.



Court must destroy all evidence it takes under submission, so please make copies in advance.



Please treat court staff and each other with respect.


Court Reporters & Translators

All proceedings are recorded. Translators are provided free of charge. Please inform the court well in advance of you need a translator.


Computers in the Courtroom




Our court-provided A/V system is limited (we have a VCR – no joke), so please bring any special A/V you may require. Contact clerk in advance to arrange for set-up.


Cameras in the Courtroom

Only with prior permission.



Be prepared, professional, and precise. No need to repeat things. I very much look forward to meeting and working with you!