State of Washington
Ethics Advisory CommitteeOpinion 92-15
May a judicial officer appoint an attorney as a pro tem judge if the attorney is a member of the board of trustees of a non-profit corporation which provides public defender services to the court, when public defender attorneys who are employed by that corporation would appear before that pro tem judge?
CJC Canon 5B applies to pro tem judges while they are serving in that capacity. CJC Canon 5B(1) provides that judges should not serve if it is likely that the organization will be engaged in proceedings that would ordinarily come before the judge or will be regularly engaged in adversary proceedings in court.
Because the public defenders would appear in this court before the pro tem judge, it would not be appropriate under Canon 5B(1) for the judge to appoint the attorney who serves on the public defender board as the pro tem judge.
See Opinion 92-3
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