October 19, 2000
A judge may participate in a legal seminar in a foreign country and may
accept travel and accommodation expenses for the judge and the judge's
spouse from the sponsoring institute.
22 NYCRR 100.4(B); 100.4(H);
Opinion 91-07 (Vol. VII).
A judge has been invited to attend and participate in a conference to be held in a foreign country conducted by an educational not-for-profit group. The judge will be attending a seminar on "Justice, Business and Society" with a focus on globalization and economic crime. The sponsoring institute has offered to pay travel, food and accommodation expenses for both the judge and judge's spouse. As far as the judge knows, no person participating in, attending, or paying for the conference has ever had or is likely to have any matter in the judge's court.
As described, the proposed participation of the judge in this legal conference is a permissible extra-judicial activity under section 100.4(B) of the Rules Governing Judicial Conduct. It therefore follows, under the section 100.4(H) of the Rules, that the judge and spouse may accept travel, food and lodging which are reasonable and appropriate for the occasion. See e.g. Opinion 91-07 (Vol. VII).