95 N.J.L.J. 206
March 9, 1972
Conflict of Interest
Becoming Municipal Judge
We have been asked whether it is ethical for an attorney who
has previously represented a Patrolmen's Benevolent Association and
its members in a particular municipality in salary negotiations
with the municipality, to serve as Judge of the Municipal Court in
the same municipality. The attorney making the inquiry suggests
that in the great majority of cases which may come before a
municipal court judge, there will be appearances by the police
officers with whom he has recently been dealing through their
association as a negotiator and personal representative.
Obviously, the selection of a municipal court judge is a matter solely in the discretion of the governing body of the municipality. It may very well be that the close former relationship of the judge to police officers frequently appearing
before him might require the judge to disqualify himself in particular instances, but this is not a matter for determination by this Committee at this time.