A JUDGE SHALL PERFORM THE DUTIES OF JUDICIAL OFFICE IMPARTIALLY, COMPETENTLY, AND DILIGENTLY.
The duties of judicial office, as prescribed by law, shall take precedence over all of a judge's personal and extrajudicial activities.
A judge shall uphold and apply the law, and shall perform all duties of judicial office fairly and impartially.
(A) A judge shall perform the duties of judicial office, including administrative duties, without bias or prejudice.
(B) A judge shall not, in the performance of judicial duties, by words or conduct manifest bias or prejudice, or engage in harassment, including but not limited to bias, prejudice, or harassment based upon race, sex, gender, religion, national origin, ethnicity, disability, age, sexual orientation, marital status, socioeconomic status, or political affiliation, and shall not permit court staff, court officials, or others subject to the judge's direction and control to do so.
(C) A judge shall require lawyers in proceedings before the court to refrain from manifesting bias or prejudice, or engaging in harassment, against parties, witnesses, lawyers, or others based upon attributes including but not limited to race, sex, gender, religion, national origin, ethnicity, disability, age, sexual orientation, marital status, socioeconomic status, or political affiliation.
(D) The restrictions of paragraphs (B) and (C) do not preclude judges or lawyers from making legitimate reference to the listed factors, or similar factors, when they are relevant to an issue in a proceeding.
(A) A judge shall not be swayed by public clamor or fear of criticism.
(B) A judge shall not permit family, social, political, financial, or other interests or relationships to influence the judge's judicial conduct or judgment.
(C) A judge shall not convey or permit others to convey the impression that any person or organization is in a position to influence the judge.
(A) A judge shall perform judicial and administrative duties competently and diligently.
(B) A judge shall cooperate with other judges and court officials in the administration of court business.
(A) A judge shall accord to every person who has a legal interest in a proceeding, or that person's lawyer, the right to be heard according to law.
(B) A judge may encourage parties to a proceeding and their lawyers to settle matters in dispute but shall not act in a manner that coerces any party into settlement.
A judge shall hear and decide matters assigned to the judge, except when disqualification is required by Rule 2.11 or other law.
(A) A judge shall require order and decorum in proceedings before the court.
(B) A judge shall be patient, dignified, and courteous to litigants, jurors, witnesses, lawyers, court staff, court officials, and others with whom the judge deals in an official capacity, and shall require similar conduct of lawyers, court staff, court officials, and others subject to the judge's direction and control.
(C) A judge shall not commend or criticize jurors for their verdict other than in a court order or opinion in a proceeding.
A judge shall not initiate, permit, or consider ex parte communications, or consider other communications made to the judge outside the presence of the parties or their lawyers, concerning a pending or impending matter, except as follows:
(1) When circumstances require it, ex parte communication for scheduling, administrative, or emergency purposes, which does not address substantive matters, is permitted, provided:
(a) the judge reasonably believes that no party will gain a procedural, substantive, or tactical advantage as a result of the ex parte communication; and
(b) the judge makes provision promptly to notify all other parties of the substance of the ex parte communication, and gives the parties an opportunity to respond.
(2) A judge may obtain the written advice of a disinterested expert on the law applicable to a proceeding before the judge if the judge gives advance notice to the parties of the person to be consulted and the subject matter of the advice to be solicited, and affords the parties a reasonable opportunity to object and respond to the notice and to the advice received.
(3) A judge may consult with court staff and court officials whose functions are to aid the judge in carrying out the judge's adjudicative responsibilities, or with other judges, provided the judge makes reasonable efforts to avoid receiving factual information that is not part of the record, and does not abrogate the responsibility personally to decide the matter.
(4) A judge may, with the consent of the parties, confer separately with the parties and their lawyers in an effort to settle matters pending before the judge.
(5) A judge may initiate, permit, or consider any ex parte communication when expressly authorized by law to do so.
(B) If a judge inadvertently receives an unauthorized ex parte communication bearing upon the substance of a matter, the communication should be noted as received and returned to the sender without review by the judge. If a judge inadvertently reviews an unauthorized ex parte communication bearing upon the substance of a matter, the judge shall make provision to notify the parties promptly of the substance of the communication and provide the parties with an opportunity to respond.
(C) A judge shall not investigate facts in a matter independently, and shall consider only the evidence presented and any facts that may properly be judicially noticed.
(D) A judge shall make reasonable efforts, including providing appropriate supervision, to ensure that this Rule is not violated by court staff, court officials, and others subject to the judge's direction and control.
(A) A judge shall not make any public statement that might reasonably be expected to affect the outcome or impair the fairness of a matter pending or impending in any court, or make any nonpublic statement that might substantially interfere with a fair trial or hearing.
(B) A judge shall not, in connection with cases, controversies, or issues that are likely to come before the court, make pledges, promises, or commitments that are inconsistent with the impartial performance of the adjudicative duties of judicial office.
(C) A judge shall require court staff, court officials, and others subject to the judge's direction and control to refrain from making statements that the judge would be prohibited from making by paragraphs (A) and (B).
(D) Notwithstanding the restrictions in paragraph (A), a judge may make public statements in the course of official duties, may explain court procedures, and may comment on any proceeding in which the judge is a litigant in a personal capacity.
(E) Subject to the requirements of paragraph (A), a judge may respond directly or through a third party to allegations in the media or elsewhere concerning the judge's conduct in a matter.
(A) A judge shall disqualify himself or herself in any proceeding in which the judge's impartiality might reasonably be questioned, including but not limited to the following circumstances:
(1) The judge has a personal bias or prejudice concerning a party or a party's lawyer, or personal knowledge of facts that are in dispute in the proceeding.
(2) The judge knows that the judge, the judge's spouse, a person with whom the judge has an intimate relationship, a member of the judge's household, or a person within the third degree of relationship to any of them, or the spouse or person in an intimate relationship with such a person is:
(a) a party to the proceeding, or an officer, director, general partner, managing member, or trustee or a party;
(b) acting as a lawyer in the proceeding;
(c) a person who has more than a de minimis interest that could be substantially affected by the proceeding; or
(d) likely to be a material witness in the proceeding.
(3) The judge knows that he or she, individually or as a fiduciary, or the judge's spouse, parent, child, or any other member of the judge's family residing in the judge's household, a person with whom the judge has an intimate relationship, or any other member of the judge's household, has an economic interest in the subject matter in controversy or in a party to the proceeding.
(4) The judge, while a judge or a judicial candidate, has made a public statement, other than in a court proceeding, judicial decision, or opinion, that commits or appears to commit the judge to reach a particular result or rule in a particular way in the proceeding or controversy.
(5) The judge:
(a) served as a lawyer in the matter in controversy, or was associated with a lawyer who participated substantially as a lawyer in the matter during such association;
(b) served in governmental employment, and in such capacity participated personally and substantially as a lawyer or public official concerning the proceeding, or has publicly expressed in such capacity an opinion concerning the merits of the particular matter in controversy;
(c) was a material witness concerning the matter; or
(d) previously presided as a judge over the matter in another court.
(B) A judge shall keep informed about the judge's personal and fiduciary economic interests, and make a reasonable effort to keep informed about the personal economic interests of the judge's spouse, a person with whom the judge has an intimate relationship, and any member of the judge's household.
(C) A judge subject to disqualification under this Rule, other than for bias or prejudice under paragraph (A)(1), may disclose on the record the basis of the judge's disqualification and may ask the parties and their lawyers to consider, outside the presence of the judge and court personnel, whether to waive disqualification. If, following the disclosure, the parties and lawyers agree, without participation by the judge or court personnel, that the judge should not be disqualified, the judge may participate in the proceeding. The agreement shall be incorporated into the record of the proceeding.
(A) A judge shall require court staff, court officials, and others subject to the judge's direction and control to act in a manner consistent with the judge's obligations under this Code.
(B) A judge with supervisory authority for the performance of other judges shall take reasonable measures to ensure that those judges properly discharge their judicial responsibilities, including the prompt disposition of matters before them.
(A) In making administrative appointments, a judge:
(1) shall exercise the power of appointment impartially and on the basis of merit; and
(2) shall avoid nepotism, favoritism, and unnecessary appointments.
(B) A judge shall not approve compensation of appointees beyond the fair value of services rendered.
A judge having a reasonable belief that the performance of a lawyer or another judge is impaired by drugs or alcohol, or by a mental, emotional, or physical condition, shall take appropriate action, which may include a confidential referral to a lawyer or judicial assistance program.
(A) A judge having knowledge that another judge has committed a violation of this Code that raises a substantial question regarding the judge's honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness as a judge in other respects shall inform the appropriate authority.
(B) A judge having knowledge that a lawyer has committed a violation of the Rules of Professional Conduct that raises a substantial question regarding the lawyer's honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness as a lawyer in other respects shall inform the appropriate authority.
(C) A judge who receives credible information indicating a substantial likelihood that another judge has committed a violation of this Code shall take appropriate action.
(D) A judge who receives credible information indicating a substantial likelihood that a lawyer has committed a violation of the Rules of Professional Conduct shall take appropriate action.
(A) A judge shall cooperate and be candid and honest with judicial and lawyer disciplinary agencies.
(B) A judge shall not retaliate, directly or indirectly, against a person known or suspected to have assisted or cooperated with an investigation of a judge or a lawyer.