September 24, 1992
Digest: A recently elected judge may appoint attorneys, with whom the judge previously worked on an occasional basis, as referees or receivers.
Rule: 22 NYCRR 100.2
A full-time judge, prior to election, worked with other attorneys on an occasional basis in connection with individual cases. The judge asks whether the judge should wait two years before appointing any of those attorneys as referees and receivers.
The Rules of the Judicial Conduct do not specifically address any time frame in connection with such appointments of attorneys. While this Committee previously has concluded that a judge should invoke recusal for a two-year period in court cases where the judge and the attorney for a litigant had a prior frequent, continuing working relationship, the two-year period does not apply to appointments; not does it apply to attorneys with whom the judge worked on only an occasional basis. Thus, the judge may appoint these attorneys as referees or receivers without waiting any period of time.