By: Daily Record Staff//January 10, 2012
By: Daily Record Staff//January 10, 2012//
NYS Advisory Committee on Judicial Ethics
Ex-spouse’s Former Counsel
Background: An attorney and part-time judge inquired as to whether an attorney who represented his ex-spouse in a family court matter, or his associates, may appear before him after the matter is concluded.
Opinion: The committee determined that a two-year period must toll before the part-time judge may hear cases involving his ex-spouse’s attorneys. After the two-year period the part-time judge must determine whether he is able to be fair and impartial. He must also disclose this matter. The part-time judge may exercise his discretion as to whether he should recuse himself upon an objection by the attorneys. With respect to the attorney’s partners and associates, if they were not involved in the representation of the ex-spouse, the part-time judge may, but is not required to, disclose the prior involvement and exercise his discretion with respect to recusal.