CACI 118 Personal Pronouns
California Civil Jury Instructions CACI
118 Personal Pronouns
One of the [parties/witnesses/attorneys/specify other participant in the case] in this case uses the personal pronouns [specify the person’s pronouns]. You may hear the judge and attorneys refer to [name of person] using the pronouns: [specify the person’s pronouns].
Directions for Use
It is the policy of the State of California that intersex, transgender, and nonbinary people are entitled to full legal recognition and equal treatment under the law. In accordance with this policy, attorneys and courts should take affirmative steps to ensure that they are using correct personal pronouns. To further this policy, these instructions have been expanded to include “nonbinary pronoun” wherever appropriate. Although the advisory committee acknowledges a trend for the singular use of “they,” “their,” and “them,” the committee also recognizes these pronouns have plural denotations with the potential to confuse jurors. For clarity in the jury instructions, the committee recommends using an individual’s name rather than a personal nonbinary pronoun (such as “they”) if the pronoun could result in confusion.
The court should consult with the attorneys in the case before reading this instruction to the jury. The court should also consult with the individual whose pronouns are being discussed to ensure the court acts in a way that protects the individual’s dignity and privacy.
Sources and Authority
• Gender Recognition Act. Stats. 2019, ch. 853 (SB 179).
• “Sex” Defined. Gov. Code, § 12926(r)(2).
• “Gender Expression” Defined. Cal. Code Regs., tit. 2, § 11030(a).
• “Gender Identity” Defined. Cal. Code Regs., tit. 2, § 11030(b).