New York State Advisory Committee on Judicial Ethics
Real property transaction – Disqualification
Background: The inquiring judge’s second-degree relative retained counsel to pursue litigation concerning real property in which the judge also has an interest. The matter has concluded, but the judge asked if he may preside when the attorney appears as defense counsel in cases involving alleged violations of the Vehicle and Traffic Law or the penal statues and/or landlord/tenant issues.
Opinion: The Committee concluded that a judge is disqualified, subject to remittal, from all matters involving an attorney who was hired by the judge’s second-degree relative to pursue litigation concerning real property in which the judge has an interest. This obligation continues for two years after the representation completely terminates.