Press Release Archive

Holiday closure

The Judicial Branch of the Navajo Nation will be closed Monday, May 29, 2023, and Thursday, June 1, 2023.

Holiday closure

The Judicial Branch of the Navajo Nation will be closed Monday, April 24, 2023, to recognize Navajo Nation Sovereignty Day.

Navajo Nation Sovereignty Day commemorates the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision in Kerr-McGee Corp. v. Navajo Tribe, which was decided April 16, 1985. In the Opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court explained that the power to tax is an essential attribute of self-government and found that the Navajo Nation had the ability to pass laws, including those related to tax, without the approval of the Secretary of the Interior. The Court stated, "The Navajo Government has been called 'probably the most elaborate' among tribes."

While Sovereignty Day is April 16, the Judicial Branch observes the holiday on the fourth Monday of each year.

Justice Day commemorates creation of Navajo Nation Courts

The public is invited to the Justice Day event that has been rescheduled for May 2, 2023 at the Supreme Court and Window Rock District Court, east of the Navajo Nation Veterans Memorial Park in Window Rock, Ariz. See press release and flyer.

Quarterly Report

Navajo Nation Judicial Branch FY2023 Second Quarterly Report here..

Justice Day

CANCELED AS OF APRIL 4, 2023 DUE TO INCLEMENT WEATHER. The Supreme Court, Window Rock District Court, Peacemaking Program and Administrative Offices of the Courts are hosting Justice Day on April 4, 2023, to celebrate the creation of the Navajo Nation Court system. We are inviting service providers to set up at the Supreme Court/WRDC parking lot. If you have any questions, please contact Justice Day Flyer. Service Provider Registration Form. See press release.


< Chief Justice JoAnn B. Jayne issued the following statement on the passing of former Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly, who served from 2011 through 2015. "On behalf of the Navajo Nation Judicial Branch, I send sincere condolences to the family and friends of President Ben Shelly and to the Navajo Nation. Though a very accomplished man, having served in the highest level of our government, President Shelly was a humble public servant. He helped to lead the Navajo Nation through governmental change and worked to streamline Navajo Nation government processes. He supported the Navajo Nation Judicial Branch in ensuring judicial services were carried out for the people by appointing judges to the bench during his time as President. We thank his family for sharing their loved one with our Navajo Nation."


Former Chairman and President Peterson Zah passed on March 7, 2022. Chief Justice JoAnn B. Jayne released the following statement on behalf of the Judicial Branch of the Navajo Nation. "We pay homage to our honored and respected leader, Peterson Zah, the only person to serve as the Navajo Nation's Chairman and President. He led our people through a transition period for our government and set the stage to preserve Navajo Nation sovereignty with the development of the Permanent Trust Fund. His influence is ever present, to this day, through his leadership and his advocacy to advance education among our people. We, at the Judicial Branch, offer our sincere condolences to his family and friends and to all our Navajo people for he touched the lives of each of US."


The Judicial Branch of the Navajo Nation is seeking applicants for nomination of membership on the Commission on Navajo Government Development. Click for more information.

Grant: 2022 U.S. Department of Justice Edward Byrne Justice Assistance Grant
Applicant(s): The Judicial Branch of the Navajo Nation
Title: Training to Improve Court Services
Category 2: Eligible Allocation Amounts of $25,000 or More
Allocated Amount: $168,791

The Navajo Nation proposes to improve the efficiency of court services by providing necessary tools through training, education and equipment to the Navajo Nation Judicial Districts. Training will focus on case management for court staff, fundamentals of evidence, evidentiary issues and principles of evidence and identifying procedural tools to resolve evidentiary issues. Any review comments on the attached grant narrative can be directed to Karen Francis at or to Raquel Chee at Thank you.

Grant: 2021 U.S. Department of Justice Edward Byrne Justice Assistance Grant
Applicant(s): The Judicial Branch of the Navajo Nation
Title: Justice Strategic Planning
Amount requested: $192,073

The Navajo Nation proposes to continue the work to collect data, manage data and analyze data that is collected about violent crimes committed on the reservation. A Statistical Data Analyst will be maintained at the Division of Public Safety – Information Management Section. Justice planning, utilizing the data, will be used for justice planning to implement and inform our Diné Action Plan. The Peacemaking Program will work to foster healthy discussions of healing with victims and survivors of missing and murdered persons and will support the rollout of a toolkit for missing persons. For more information or questions, please contact Karen Francis at or Raquel Chee at

FY 2023 1st Quarterly Report released

January 22, 2023: The Fiscal Year 2023 First Quarterly Report of the Judicial Branch is available on the Branch Reports page.

Public service announcement

January 20, 2023: The Aneth Judicial District facility is closed Friday, January 20, 2023, at 2 p.m. and Monday, January 23, 2023. The building will reopen on Tuesday, January 24, 2023, at 8 a.m. Court services will continue to be available during this time through email and/or telephone. The Court may be reached by telephone at (928) 797-1402 or by email at Read public service announcement.

January 20, 2023: The Office of Probation Services and Peacemaking Program office building in Shiprock, N.M., is closed from Friday, January 20, 2023, through Monday, January 23, 2023, at 1 p.m. Staff will be teleworking and services will continue to be provided during the building closure. Alternate telephone numbers during the building closure for Probation Services are (505) 686-6330 or (505) 609-8278. The Shiprock Peacemaking Program office may be contacted by telephone at (928) 797-1317 or by email to Read public service announcement.

January 11, 2023: The Navajo Nation Supreme Court building is closed due to no heat in the building. Staff from the Supreme Court, Office of Pro Bono Services, and the Office of the Chief Justice will be teleworking until further notice. Telephone messages may be left for the Supreme Court and the Office of Pro Bono Services at (928) 871-6763 and for the Office of Chief Justice at (928) 871-7669. See public service announcement.

January 4, 2023: The phone lines for the Aneth Judicial District Court are currently inoperable. To contact the Court, please call (435) 651-3554 until further notice.

The Judicial Branch of the Navajo Nation will be closed Monday, January 16, 2023, in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.