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GR 9 COVER SHEET
Submitted by the Code of Judicial Conduct Task Force
Purpose: This proposal is a wholesale substantive revision of the Code of Judicial Conduct, which govern conduct of judicial officers in Washington. To accomplish the revision, the current Code of Judicial Conduct would be rescinded and the new Code of Judicial Conduct adopted. The Task Force makes this recommendation after its review of the 2007 American Bar Association (ABA) Model Code of Judicial Conduct and the provisions in the current Code of Judicial Conduct over the over the last year.
In addition to the substantive changes in the Code, the new Code has been substantially reformatted. Scope  explains the functionality of the new Code organization. That is, that the canons state the overarching principles of judicial ethics that all judicial officers are to observe but a judicial officer may only be punished for the violation of a rule. The comments are more extensive than those in the current Code. They are intended to provide guidance of the meaning and application of the rules but the comment itself is not enforceable. The second purpose for the comments is to identify aspirational goals for judicial officers.
The changes suggested are too numerous to set out. A detailed summary of those changes is posted on the task force Web site at: http://www.courts.wa.gov/committee/?fa=committee.home&committee_id=141.
Proposed Code provisions which are the same as those in the ABA Model Code are not noted here but are detailed in the summary cited above.
The major substantive changes are:
Additional supporting information, including Task Force minutes, is available at the AOC Web site at: http://www.courts.wa.gov/committee/?fa=committee.home&committee_id=141.
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