454 P.3d 785 (Okla.Jud.Eth. 2019), 2019-3, Judicial Ethics Opinion 2019-3

Docket Nº:2019-3
Citation:454 P.3d 785
Judge Panel:Honorable Edward C. Cunningham, Chairman, Honorable Bill Hetherington, Honorable Tom Landrith, Honorable Allen McCall, Honorable April Sellers White.
Case Date:October 03, 2019
Court:Oklahoma Judicial Ethics Advisory Panel

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454 P.3d 785 (Okla.Jud.Eth. 2019)


No. 2019-3

Oklahoma Judicial Ethics Advisory Panel

October 3, 2019

Editorial Note:

The Opinions of the Ethics Advisory Panel are advisory only and can be relied by the Council on Judicial Complaints while recommending discipline of a Judge or a Judicial Candidate and not binding on the Council or Courts in the exercise of their judicial discipline responsibilities.


The question presented to the Advisory panel asks for an Advisory Opinion from a duly elected Associate District Judge who desires to accept an opportunity to teach a spring semester class at Rogers State University. The area of study would concentrate on state and local government and the judicial process. The Judge would serve as an adjunct professor and be paid by another state agency.

[¶2]. ANSWER

While our Advisory answer is No consistent with this Opinion, we view this question as ultimately a chain of command issue. Facts and circumstances can vary. Should a Judge in this situation choose to pursue the teaching position after consideration of this Opinion, the Judge must make written request and receive permission from his or her Chief Judge and Presiding Judge, with the ultimate authority for permission that of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.


RULE 3.1

Extrajudicial Activities in General

A judge may engage in extrajudicial activities, except as prohibited by law or this Code. However, when engaging in extrajudicial activities, a judge shall not:

(A) participate in activities that will interfere with the proper performance of the judge’s judicial duties:

(B) participate in activities that will lead to frequent disqualification of the judge;

(C) participate in activities that would appear to a reasonable person to undermine the judge’s independence, integrity, or impartiality;

(D) engage in conduct that would appear to a reasonable person to be coercive; or

(E) make use of court premises, staff, stationery, equipment, or other resources, except

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