Judicial Ethics Opinions

Judicial Ethics Opinion 17-48

The inquiring part-time attorney judge must report to the Commission on Judicial Conduct that another judge, while presiding over a case, threatened to file a disciplinary complaint against the inquirer unless the inquirer's client settled the case for a particular sum.

Judicial Ethics Opinion 16-178

A judicial association may not submit an amicus brief to the Court of Appeals in a pending appeal to express its members' concern, as trial judges, about the practical effects of a recent Appellate Division decision that trial judges lack statutory authority to take a particular action in connection with sentencing. The judicial association and/or individual judges may instead propose changes to applicable statutes which affect sentencing procedures in their courts. However, if it is not possible to advocate for the desired statutory change without publicly commenting on a specific, identifiable case, they must wait until the case is completely resolved.

Judicial Ethics Opinion 16-164

A new full-time judge may continue to serve as a receiver in foreclosure pursuant to an appointment received before assuming the bench, provided his/her duties are ministerial in nature and completed within one year, if possible.

Judicial Ethics Opinion 17-60

An announcement by the outgoing political party chair that next year's party meeting will be held "in May 2018" is not sufficiently definite and reliable for judicial candidates to calculate the start of their window period. They may therefore assume that this year's official date will be used again in 2018 and count back nine months from that presumed date.

Judicial Ethics Opinion 17-04

A judge may not attend a three-day human trafficking seminar sponsored by federal prosecutorial and law enforcement agencies, where the program will focus primarily on strategies for effective prosecution.

Judicial Ethics Opinion 16-175

While a judge need not separately scrutinize all pleadings to determine whether his/her client is the issuing officer, the judge must not take a guilty plea, either by mail or in person, if the client's role as issuing officer is readily available, such as in those instances where the officer's name appears on the ticket.