Opinion 89-144

December 5, 1989


Digest:         An appellate judge may employ the child of a trial judge as law clerk, provided that the appellate judge recuses himself/herself in cases where the law clerk’s parent is involved.


Rules:          22 NYCRR 100.2(a).




         A justice of the Appellate Division inquires whether it is permissible to employ the child of a Supreme Court justice within the same judicial department as the appellate justice’s personal law clerk. The Appellate Division justice will recuse himself/herself in any cases in which the law clerk’s parent was involved.


                             Section 100.2(a) of the Rules of the Chief Administrator provides that:


A judge shall respect and comply with the law and shall conduct himself or herself at all times in a manner that promotes public confidence in the integrity and impartiality of the Judiciary.


         Employing the child of a trial justice as a law clerk does not create an appearance of impropriety, so long as the appellate justice recuses himself/herself in matters involving the law clerk’s parent.