Section 12-18-10

Retirement and disability benefits of justices of Supreme Court, judges of courts of appeals and judges of circuit courts; payment of benefits to spouses upon death of justices or judges; call to active duty status of retired justices or judges; powers, duties, compensation, etc., of retired justices or judges on active duty status; transfer of justices or judges from active to inactive status, etc.

(a) The retirement benefit payable to a justice of the Supreme Court or judge of one of the courts of appeals retiring pursuant to subdivision (2), (3), (4) or (5) of subsection (a) of Section 12-18-6 shall be 75 percent of the salary prescribed by law for the position from which he retires, payable monthly for the rest of his life. Such benefit shall continue to be 75 percent of his salary prescribed by law for such position and shall change in amount as such salary is hereafter increased or decreased by law and shall not be subject to writs of attachment or garnishment.

(b) The retirement benefit payable to a judge of a circuit court retiring pursuant to subdivision (2), (3), (4) or (5) of subsection (b) of Section 12-18-6 shall be 75 percent of the salary prescribed by law of the salary payable from the State Treasury to circuit judges. Such retirement benefits shall be payable monthly for the life of the beneficiary and shall continue to be 75 percent of the salary then prescribed by law for the respective position and shall change in amount as such salary is hereafter increased or decreased by law and shall not be subject to writs of attachment or garnishment.

(c) After the death of any justice or judge who had held office for a minimum of five years, his spouse shall receive a yearly benefit equivalent to three percent of the salary payable from the State Treasury prescribed by law for his former position as either a justice or judge, as the case may be, for each year of service, not to exceed 30 percent of such salary, payable monthly for the remainder of such spouse's life or until his or her remarriage, and such benefit shall change in amount as such salary is hereafter increased or decreased by law.

(d) Any justice or judge retiring pursuant to subdivision (1) of subsection (a) or subdivision (1) of subsection (b) of Section 12-8-6 who has served for 10 years shall be entitled to a disability benefit allowance payable monthly from the Judicial Retirement Fund equal to 75 percent of the salary payable from the State Treasury for the position he held at the time he retires. If such disabled justice or judge has served less than 10 years, he shall be entitled to receive a monthly disability benefit that is equal to 25 percent of the salary payable from the State Treasury for the position he held at the time he retires plus 10 percent of such salary for each year of service in excess of five years; provided, however, that in no event shall such justice or judge receive less than 30 percent of the annual salary being paid to a full-time justice or judge, as the case may be, from the State Treasury.

(e) Every justice or judge who has retired pursuant to this article may, on the request of the Chief Justice, the presiding judge of a court of appeals or the Governor, be called to active duty status and, when serving with the Supreme Court or courts of appeals, shall perform such duties as may be prescribed by the Chief Justice or the presiding judge of the court of appeals with which he is serving and, when serving in a circuit court, shall perform such duties as may be prescribed by the presiding judge in the circuit. Such retired justice or judge of a court of appeals in such active service status shall receive an additional sum during the term of such service which, when added to his retirement benefits, would amount to $250.00 per month less than the monthly salary paid a justice or judge of the appellate court from which he has retired. The salary paid a retired circuit judge called to active service with the Supreme Court or a court of appeals shall be the salary paid a circuit judge in the circuit from which said judge retired. The salary paid a retired circuit judge called to active service as a circuit judge shall be the salary paid a regular judge in the circuit to which he is assigned or in the circuit from which he retired, whichever is greater. In no event, however, shall the total compensation paid to a retired circuit judge on active status during any calendar year exceed a sum which is $1,000.00 less than the compensation received by a regular judge in the circuit from which such judge retired.

Whenever a retired justice or judge of a court of appeals is serving in a circuit court, he shall receive compensation equal to that due the regular judge of that circuit for the performance of such duties, such compensation to be paid in the same manner as the compensation of the regular circuit judge is paid; and, whenever a retired justice or a judge of a court of appeals is serving as an active member on the Supreme Court or on one of the courts of appeals, then he shall be entitled to receive, during the time of such service, compensation equal to that due a regular justice or judge for the performance of such duties, such compensation to be paid in the same manner as the compensation of a regular justice or judge is paid.

A retired justice or judge of one of the courts of appeals or circuit judge, while serving with the Supreme Court or one of the courts of appeals for reasons other than the absence or disqualification of a justice or judge, shall perform such duties as may be prescribed by the Chief Justice when serving with the Supreme Court, or as prescribed by the presiding judge of the court of appeals with which he may be serving.

(f) The Chief Justice, with the advice of the Supreme Court, or the presiding judge of a court of appeals, with the advice of the court over which he presides, shall determine whether such retired justice or judge is satisfactorily performing his assigned duties. Upon determination that such retired justice or judge is not satisfactorily performing such duties, such retired justice or judge shall immediately be removed from active status, and his additional active duty compensation shall be stopped.

(g) Except as provided in subsection (f) of this section, a retired justice or judge shall hold office as such additional or extra judge during good behavior and may be removed only for causes specified in the constitution. Such retired justices or judges may, however, but subject to the approval of the Chief Justice, be transferred to inactive status, upon request for such transfer. Justices or judges who revert to inactive status shall be entitled to the same retirement benefits prescribed in subsections (a) and (b) of this section for justices and judges who have retired.

(h) Nothing contained in this section or hereafter shall limit the power and authority of the Chief Justice to transfer a retired justice or judge from inactive status to active status or from active status to inactive status as the public interest in his judgment requires.

(Acts 1973, No. 1163, p. 1948, §7.)