District judges may appoint necessary law clerks and secretaries subject to any limitation on the aggregate salaries of such employees which may be imposed by law. A law clerk appointed under this section shall be exempt from the provisions of subchapter I of chapter 63 of title 5, unless specifically included by the appointing judge or by local rule of court.
28 U.S. Code § 752 - Law clerks and secretaries
Based on title 28, U.S.C., 1940 ed., §§ 5b and 128 (Mar. 3, 1911, ch. 231, § 118b, as added Feb. 17, 1936, ch. 75, 49 Stat. 1140; May 14, 1940, ch. 189, title IV, 54 Stat. 210; June 28, 1941, ch. 258, title IV, 55 Stat. 301; July 2, 1942, ch. 472, title IV, 56 Stat. 504).
Words in section 128 of title 28, U.S.C., 1940 ed., “but there shall not be appointed more than thirty-five of such law clerks during the first fiscal year of the enactment of this section” were omitted as executed and obsolete. Words “Thereafter such number in excess of thirty-five per year shall be limited by necessity of each case as hereinabove provided” were also deleted as superseded by section 5b of said title and obsolete. The Director of the Administrative Office has expressed such views. Chief judge of the circuit was substituted for senior circuit judge to conform to section 44 of this title.
The provisions in section 5b of title 28, U.S.C., 1940 ed., that district judges shall not appoint more than three law clerks in any one circuit was not repeated in the Judiciary Appropriation Acts, 1944, 1945, and 1946, 57 Stat. 242, 58 Stat. 357, 59 Stat. 196, ch. 129. The Director of the Administrative Office for United States Courts advises that as a matter of fact, more than three law clerks are serving district judges in several of the circuits at the present time. Consequently the limitation is omitted from this section.
The provision for appointment of secretaries is new. Existing law fixes compensation of secretaries but makes no provision for their appointment. (See section 604 of this title and reviser’s note thereunder.)
Minor changes were made in phraseology.
As finally enacted, sections 374c and 374d of Title 28, U.S.C., 1946 ed., which were derived from act July 23, 1947, ch. 300, §§ 1, 2, 61 Stat. 409, were an additional source of this section. Hence, by Senate amendment, the section was changed to conform with such sections, and such act was included in the schedule of repeals. See 80th Congress Senate Report No. 1559.
1988—Pub. L. 100–702 inserted at end “A law clerk appointed under this section shall be exempt from the provisions of subchapter I of chapter 63 of title 5, unless specifically included by the appointing judge or by local rule of court.”
1959—Pub. L. 86–221 substituted provision permitting district judges to appoint necessary law clerks and secretaries subject to aggregate salary limitations for provisions permitting a district judge to appoint a secretary and also a law clerk upon certification of necessity by the chief judge of the circuit and permitting the chief judge of a district court having five or more district judges to appoint an assistant secretary.