July 5, 2007
This responds to your inquiry (07-45) asking if an unpaid law school intern working in your chambers 7 to 10 hours per week may continue to serve in that position after accepting an appointment to fill a vacancy on the County Legislature, and, beyond that, while campaigning to retain that seat in the upcoming November election.
Although a judge’s staff members are prohibited from engaging in certain political activities, they are not prohibited from running for, or serving in elective public office. 22 NYCRR 100.5(C); Opinions 05-38 and 04-104. The same is true for an unpaid legal intern.
Pursuant to section 50.3 of the Rules of the Chief Judge, the intern also may be required to obtain administrative permission to engage in dual employment. 22 NYCRR 50.3.