The Advisory Committee on Judicial Ethics has considered your inquiry (97-29), concerning your proposal to write to the Surrogate’s Court, informing it that you are now a full-time judge and that, as a full-time judge, you may not take any further action regarding an estate of a former client.
Enclosed for your information is Opinion 90-86 (Vol. VI), in which this Committee concluded that a co-executor of a will, who becomes a full-time judge when administration of an estate has almost been concluded must, nonetheless, resign as co-executor.
Given the restrictions on a full-time judge serving as a fiduciary set forth in section 100.4(E)(1) of the Rules Governing Judicial Conduct, the Committee concludes that it would not be improper for you to contact the Surrogate’s Court for the purpose of notifying it that you are now a full-time judge and suggesting that it refer any further questions concerning the estate to your successor law firm.
Very truly yours,
Thomas P. Flaherty
Justice of the Supreme Court
George D. Marlow
Dutchess County Court Judge