Opinion 90-81

June 7, 1990

Please Note: While the present opinion focuses on the rule that a judge’s partners and associates may not appear before any judge of the court in which the judge presides (see 22 NYCRR 100.6[B][3]), we note there may also be other significant issues to address if the judge’s partners or associates represent the municipality in which the judge presides.  


Digest:         An associate of a part-time judge may not appear before another judge in the judge's court under any circumstances.


Rules:          22 NYCRR 1OO.5(f).


         A part-time judge, who also is a partner in a law firm, inquires whether an associate in the judge's firm may appear before another judge of that court, in the associate's capacity as part-time town attorney.

         Section 100.5(f) of the Rules of the Chief Administrator specifically provides that, “No judge who is permitted to practice law shall permit his or her partners or associates to practice law in the court in which he or she is a judge.” While the judge's associate would not be appearing in that court as an associate of the judge's law firm, but rather as a part-time town attorney, the Rules do not permit a judge's associate to appear in the judge's court before any judge, regardless of the associate's capacity or his financial arrangements with the judge. Accordingly, the judge's associate may not practice in the judge's court under any circumstances.