Revised judicial rules coming to Nevada

Chris Rizo Jan. 4, 2010, 2:34pm

Nevada Supreme Court building

CARSON CITY, Nev. (Legal Newsline) -A Revised Code of Judicial Conduct is coming to Nevada, following adoption last month by the state Supreme Court.

The changes mark the first major overhaul in nearly 20 years of how jurists in the Silver State should conduct themselves. The new rules, which resulted from a commission study, take effect Jan. 19.

Under the new regulations, state judges will have an obligation to report the misconduct of another jurist or lawyer so long as there is information indicating a there is a "substantial likelihood" of a conduct violation.

The rule, among other things, requires judges to "take appropriate action" when he or she believes that a judge or a lawyer's performance is "impaired by drugs or alcohol or by a mental, emotional, or physical condition."

The new code of judicial conduct, adopted Dec. 17, also relaxed rules on judges making public statements, including those to the press.

Under the new regulations, a judge will be allowed to respond to allegations in the media concerning his or her conduct. They are, however, are still barred from making public statements on pending cases.

Judges and judicial candidates, under the revised rules, may also attend political gatherings or purchase tickets for events sponsored by political organizations or candidates for public office.

The new rules also do not force a judge to disqualify himself from a case if a judicial discipline complaint is filed against him involving the case.

The commission that drafted the new rules was led by former Nevada Supreme Court Chief Justice William Maupin.

From Legal Newsline: Reach staff reporter Chris Rizo at

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