The Advisory Committee on Judicial Ethics responds to written inquiries from New York state’s approximately 3,600 judges and justices, as well as hundreds of judicial hearing officers, support magistrates, court attorney-referees, and judicial candidates (both judges and non-judges seeking election to judicial office). The committee interprets the Rules Governing Judicial Conduct (22 NYCRR Part 100) and, to the extent applicable, the Code of Judicial Conduct. The committee consists of 27 current and retired judges, and is co-chaired by the Honorable Margaret Walsh, a justice of the supreme court, and the Honorable Lillian Wan, a court of claims judge and acting supreme court justice.

This responds to your inquiry (21-92) asking about your obligations in matters involving the law firm colleagues of an attorney with whom you maintain a “close social relationship” or “close personal relationship” that requires disclosure or disqualifications under Opinion 11-125. It appears that you do not have a social or other relationship with these individuals; the sole basis for considering disqualification or disclosure is the fact that they are the partners or associates of an attorney you consider a close personal friend.