October 31, 2009
Digest: A judge may issue a declaration about the facts and circumstances involved in an agreement, which the judge negotiated while in private practice years ago.
Rules: 22 NYCRR 100.2.
A judge, many years ago, when in private practice, negotiated an employment agreement on behalf of a client/actor with a corporation. That corporation now is involved in another dispute in another state in connection withthe agreement and has requested that the judge issue a declaration of the circumstances involved in and the meaning of the agreement negotiated by the judge. The judge asks whether it is permissible to issue this declaration.
There is nothing ethically impermissible about the judge declaring the facts and circumstances involved in an agreement negotiated more than25 years ago by the judge, when the judge was in private practice.