Canon 6

Compliance with the Code of Judicial Conduct


A. The following persons shall comply with all provisions of this Code:

(1) An active, full-time justice or judge of one of the following courts:

(a) the Supreme Court,
(b) the Court of Criminal Appeals,
(c) courts of appeals,
(d) district courts,
(e) criminal district courts, and
(f) statutory county courts.

(2) A full-time commissioner, master, magistrate, or referee of a court listed in (1) above.

B. A County Judge who performs judicial functions shall comply with all provisions of this Code except the judge is not required to comply:

(1) when engaged in duties which relate to the judge's role in the administration of the county;

(2) with Canons 4D(2), 4D(3), or 4H;

(3) with Canon 4G, except practicing law in the court on which he or she serves or in any court subject to the appellate jurisdiction of the county court, or acting as a lawyer in a proceeding in which he or she has served as a judge or in any proceeding related thereto.

(4) with Canon 5(4) or 5(5).

C. Justices of the Peace and Municipal Court Judges.

(1) A justice of the peace or municipal court judge shall comply with all provisions of this Code, except the judge is not required to comply:

(a) with Canon 3B(7) pertaining to ex parte communications; in lieu thereof a justice of the peace or municipal court judge shall comply with 6C(2) below;

(b) with Canons 4D(2), 4D(3), 4E, or 4H;

(c) with Canon 4F, unless the court on which the judge serves may have jurisdiction of the matter or parties involved in the arbitration or mediation; or

(d) if an attorney, with Canon 4G, except practicing law in the court on which he or she serves, or acting as a lawyer in a proceeding in which he or she has served as a judge or in any proceeding related thereto.

(e) with Canons 5(4) or 5(5).

(2) A justice of the peace or a municipal court judge, except as authorized by law, shall not directly or indirectly initiate, permit, nor consider ex parte or other communications concerning the merits of a pending judicial proceeding. This subsection does not prohibit communications concerning:

(a) uncontested administrative matters,

(b) uncontested procedural matters,

(c) magistrate duties and functions,

(d) determining where jurisdiction of an impending claim or dispute may lie,

(e) determining whether a claim or dispute might more appropriately be resolved in some other         judicial or non-judicial forum,

(f) mitigating circumstances following a plea of nolo contendere or guilty for a fine-only offense, or

(g) any other matters where ex parte communications are contemplated or authorized by law.

D. A Part-time commissioner, master, magistrate, or referee of a court listed in 6A(1) above:

(1) shall comply with all provisions of this Code, except he or she is not required to comply with Canons 4D(2), 4E, 4F, 4G or 4H, and

(2) should not practice law in the court which he or she serves or in any court subject to the appellate jurisdiction of the court which he or she serves, or act as the lawyer in a proceeding in which he or she has served as a commissioner, master, magistrate, or referee, or in any other proceeding related thereto.

E. A Judge Pro Tempore, while acting as such:

(1) shall comply with all provisions of this Code applicable to the court on which he or she is serving, except he or she is not required to comply with Canons 4D(2), 4D(3), 4E, 4F, 4G or 4H, and

(2) after serving as a judge pro tempore, should not act as a lawyer in a proceeding in which he or she has served as a judge or in any other proceeding related thereto.

F. A Senior Judge, or a former district judge or a retired or former statutory county court judge who has consented to be subject to assignment as a judicial officer:

(1) shall comply with all the provisions of this Code except he or she is not required to comply with Canon 4D(2), 4E, 4F, 4G, or 4H, but

(2) should refrain from judicial service during the period of an extra-judicial appointment permitted by Canon 4H.

G. Candidates for Judicial Office.

(1) Any person seeking elective judicial office listed in Canon 6A(1) shall be subject to the same standards of Canon 5 that are required of members of the judiciary.

(2) Any judge who violates this Code shall be subject to sanctions by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct.

(3) any lawyer who is a candidate seeking judicial office who violates Canon 5 or other relevant provisions of this Code is subject to disciplinary action by the State Bar of Texas.

(4) The conduct of any other candidate for elective judicial office, not subject to paragraphs (2) and (3) of this section, who violates Canon 5 or other relevant provisions of the Code is subject to review by the Secretary of State, the Attorney General, or the local District Attorney for appropriate action.

H. Attorneys.

Any lawyer who contributes to the violation of Canons 3B(7), 3B(10), 4D(4), 5, or 6C(2), or other relevant provisions of this Code, is subject to disciplinary action by the State Bar of Texas.