JUDGE AS DRAFTER OF LEGISLATION

Opinion No. 76 (1985)


QUESTION: May a judge draft or originate legislation dealing with substantive law?

ANSWER: The Committee's answer to the question is "yes." Canon 4 of the Code of Judicial Conduct permits a judge to engage in activities to improve the law, the legal system and the administration of justice. Specifically, under paragraph B of Canon 4, a judge may engage in such activities as appearing at a public hearing before an executive or legislative body. Also the judge may consult with executive or legislative officials on matters concerning the administration of justice. The Committee considers the foregoing language to encompass the drafting or origination of legislation dealing with substantive law.