Pennsylvania Code of Judicial Conduct
Digests of Informal Opinions
Subject headings used in the formal opinions and digests of informal opinions
Canons involved in the formal opinions and digests of informal opinions
Members of Judicial Ethics Committee
Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Elections
For links to other judicial ethics web sites go to www.ajs.org
The Pennsylvania Court of Judicial Discipline web site address is www.cjdpa.org
The Pennsylvania Judicial Conduct Board web site address is www.judicialconductboardofpa.org
JUDICIAL ETHICS COMMITTEE OF THE
PENNSYLVANIA CONFERENCE OF STATE TRIAL JUDGES
INTRODUCTION AND CAVEAT
The Ethics Committee of the Pennsylvania Conference of State Trial Judges is pleased to present this web site with the summaries of informal advisory opinions issued since 1999 and the Formal Opinions published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin since 1999.
At the end of the Code of Judicial Conduct is a section entitled "Reliance on Advisory Opinions" which provides that although the advisory opinions of the Judicial Ethics Committee are not binding upon the [Judicial Conduct Board and the Court of Judicial Discipline] and the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, the opinions will be taken into account in determining whether discipline should be recommended or imposed. This "rule of reliance" applies only to the specific judge who has sought the Committee's opinion. The digests which are on this web site are intended to provide information to interested persons and are based upon the specific facts submitted to the Committee, all of which may not be disclosed in the digest. The "rule of reliance" will not apply to anyone who follows the advice set forth in the digests. A judge who desires to benefit from the "rule of reliance" should ordinarily submit an inquiry to the member of the Committee serving the judge's zone. A list of the members of the Committee and the zone each serves may be found at Members of Judicial Ethics Committee (The digests are intended to be and should be read as gender neutral. The use of the masculine form of the pronoun shall be deemed to include both the masculine and feminine genders.)
The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania has designated the Judicial Ethics Committee of the Pennsylvania Conference of State Trial Judges as the approved body to render advisory opinions regarding ethical concerns involving judges subject to the Code of Judicial Conduct. The Committee renders advisory opinions as to future conduct or to past conduct related to future conduct or continuing conduct. The Committee does not render advisory opinions solely regarding past conduct. The Committee will respond to inquiries about the inquiring judge's own conduct, not about the conduct of another.
An inquiring judge seeking advice from the Committee should submit all material facts and if there is any doubt whether a fact is material, the fact should be disclosed. If a fact is not material, the Committee will not consider it in rendering an opinion.
Edward D. Reibman
Please direct any questions about this web site to:
Gary Lee, Esquire