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Connecticut Committee on Judicial Ethics
Informal Opinion Summaries

2008-23 (December 10, 2008)
Educational Activities; Canons 2 & 4

Issue: May a Judicial Official serve as the judge for a mock trial conducted as part of a training program for contract attorneys regarding direct and cross-examination, given that the training program is only open to attorneys that represent a single class of clients (i.e. plaintiffs or defendants)?

Response: Based upon the facts presented, the Committee unanimously decided that the Judicial Official could participate subject to the following conditions: (1) the Judicial Official had already decided not to accept questions from those attending the program, in order to limit his or her rulings to the hypothetical facts in the mock trial and to avoid commenting on a pending or impending matter, (2) the Judicial Official must be willing and available to participate in training for attorneys representing the other side in litigation, (3) the Judicial Official should not provide guidance on the “in-and-outs” of practice before the Judicial Official’s court, (4) the Judicial Official should not suggest a particular interpretation of a disputed legal issue, (5) the Judicial Official should not provide direct assistance in a particular case, (6) the Judicial Official should avoid the appearance of bias or favoritism in the content of the presentation, (7) the Judicial Official may not provide legal advice, and (8) the Judicial Official may not comment on pending or impending cases.

 

 


Committee on Judicial Ethics

 


 

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