Browse Previous Page | Table of Contents | Browse Next Page

Supreme Court Rules Table of Contents

Code of Judicial Conduct Table of Contents

RULES OF THE SUPREME COURT
OF THE STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

ADMINISTRATIVE RULES 35 TO 59

 

Rule 38. Code of Judicial Conduct


CANON 1

A judge shall uphold and promote the independence, integrity, and impartiality of the judiciary, and shall avoid impropriety and the appearance of impropriety.

 

Rule 1.1  Compliance with the Law

 A judge shall comply with the law, including the Code of Judicial Conduct.

 

Rule 1.2  Promoting Confidence in the Judiciary

A judge shall act at all times in a manner that promotes public confidence in the independence, integrity, and impartiality of the judiciary, and shall avoid impropriety and the appearance of impropriety.

 

Comment

[1] Public confidence in the judiciary is eroded by improper conduct and conduct that creates the appearance of impropriety. This principle applies to both the professional and personal conduct of a judge.

[2] A judge should expect to be the subject of public scrutiny that might be viewed as burdensome if applied to other citizens, and must accept the restrictions imposed by the Code.

[3] Conduct that compromises or appears to compromise the independence, integrity, and impartiality of a judge undermines public confidence in the judiciary. Because it is not practicable to list all such conduct, the Rule is necessarily cast in general terms.

[4] Judges are encouraged to participate in activities that promote ethical conduct among judges and lawyers, support professionalism within the judiciary and the legal profession, and promote access to justice for all.

[5] Actual improprieties include violations of law, court rules or provisions of this Code. The test for appearance of impropriety is whether the conduct would create in the mind of a reasonable, disinterested person fully informed of the facts a perception that the judge's ability to carry out judicial responsibilities with integrity, impartiality and competence is impaired.

[6]  A judge is encouraged to initiate and participate in community outreach activities for the purpose of promoting public understanding of and confidence in the administration of justice.  In conducting such activities, the judge must act in a manner consistent with this Code.

 

Rule 1.3  Avoiding Abuse of the Prestige of Judicial Office

A judge shall not abuse the prestige of judicial office to advance the personal or economic interests of the judge or others, or allow others to do so.

Comment

[1] It is improper for a judge to use or attempt to use his or her position to gain personal advantage or deferential treatment of any kind. For example, it would be improper for a judge to allude to his or her judicial status to gain favorable treatment in encounters with traffic officials. Similarly, judicial letterhead must not be used for conducting a judge's personal business.

[2] A judge may provide a reference or recommendation for an individual based upon the judge's personal knowledge. The judge may use official letterhead if the judge indicates that the reference is personal and if there is no likelihood that the use of the letterhead would reasonably be perceived as an attempt to exert pressure by reason of the judicial office.

[3] Judges may participate in the process of judicial selection by cooperating with appointing authorities and screening committees, and by responding to inquiries from such entities concerning the professional qualifications of a person being considered for judicial office. Testifying as to the qualifications of a judicial nominee at a confirmation hearing is not to be construed as a violation of this rule.

[4] Special considerations arise when judges write or contribute to publications of for-profit entities, whether related or unrelated to the law. A judge should not permit anyone associated with the publication of such materials to exploit the judge's office in a manner that violates this Rule or other applicable law. In contracts for publication of a judge's writing, the judge should retain sufficient control over the advertising to avoid such exploitation.


Browse Previous Page | Table of Contents | Browse Next Page

Supreme Court Rules Table of Contents


Code of Judicial Conduct Table of Contents