Judge Matthew

Associate Judge
Sixth Judicial Circuit Court

You Be the Judge: Responding to Incivility in the Courtroom

Lawyers’ incivility during legal proceedings can cause delays, increase litigation costs and legal fees, and undermine the public’s confidence in the rule of law. Navigating such behavior without exacerbating it, while remaining a vigorous advocate for the client’s interests, can be challenging for the lawyer who is on the receiving end of this incivility.

Two circuit court judges—from different parts of the state—will provide their perspective on incivility, along with practical recommendations for how lawyers should handle incivility when it arises in a variety of contexts, including hearings, depositions, and emails. They will also provide tips for addressing incivility when it occurs during Zoom hearings or involves self-represented litigants. Finally, the judges will share how the justice system as a whole benefits from lawyers’ civility and professionalism.

Speaker Bio

Hon. Matthew D. Lee is an associate judge for the 6th Judicial Circuit Court of Illinois. He was appointed to the bench on February 25, 2021. Prior to his appointment, Judge Lee was an attorney and partner in private practice at Meyer Capel, P.C. in Champaign with a focus in criminal defense.

Judge Lee earned a bachelor’s degree with majors in political science and speech communication from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 2000 and completed his J.D. at the University of Illinois College of Law in 2003. After graduating from law school, he began his legal career as an Assistant State’s Attorney with the McLean County State’s Attorney’s Office where he remained for over 10 years and prosecuted serious felony cases prior to joining Meyer Capel.

Born in Taiwan as the son of a minister, Judge Lee moved with his family to the United States as an infant and spent his childhood in Minnesota, Saskatchewan and Colorado before settling in Naperville in 1990. He and his wife Jennifer have four sons.