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Rule 18b. Grounds for Disqualification and Recusal of Judges (1990)
Judges shall disqualify themselves in all proceedings in which:
(a) they have served as a lawyer in the matter in controversy, or a lawyer with whom they previously practiced law served during such association as a lawyer concerning the matter; or
(b) they know that, individually or as a fiduciary, they have an interest in the subject matter in controversy; or
(c) either of the parties may be related to them by affinity or consanguinity within the third degree.
A judge shall recuse himself in any proceeding in which:
(a) his impartiality might reasonably be questioned;
(b) he has a personal bias or prejudice concerning the subject matter or a party, or personal knowledge of disputed evidentiary facts concerning the proceeding;
(c) he or a lawyer with whom he previously practiced law has been a material witness concerning it;
(d) he participated as counsel, adviser or material witness in the matter in controversy, or expressed an opinion concerning the merits of it, while acting as an attorney in government service;
(e) he knows that he, individually or as a fiduciary, or his spouse or minor child residing in his household, has a financial interest in the subject matter in controversy or in a party to the proceeding, or any other interest that could be substantially affected by the outcome of the proceeding;
(f) he or his spouse, or a person within the third degree of relationship to either of them, or the spouse of such a person:
(i) is a party to the proceeding, or an officer, director, or trustee of a party;
(ii) is known by the judge to have an interest that could be substantially affected by the outcome of the proceeding;
(iii) is to the judge's knowledge likely to be a material witness in the proceeding.
(g) he or his spouse, or a person within the first degree of relationship to either of them, or the spouse of such a person, is acting as a lawyer in the proceeding.
(3) A judge should inform himself about his personal and fiduciary financial interests, and make a reasonable effort to inform himself about the personal financial interests of his spouse and minor children residing in his household.
(4) In this rule:
(a) "proceeding" includes pretrial, trial, or other stages of litigation;
(b) the degree of relationship is calculated according to the civil law system;
(c) "fiduciary" includes such relationships as executor, administrator, trustee, and guardian;
(d) “financial interest" means ownership of a legal or equitable interest, however small, or a relationship as director, advisor, or other active participant in the affairs of a party, except that:
(i) ownership in a mutual or common investment fund that holds securities is not a "financial interest" in such securities unless the judge participates in the management of the fund;
(ii) an office in an educational, religious, charitable, fraternal, or civic organization is not a "financial interest" in securities held by the organization;
(iii) the proprietary interest of a policyholder in a mutual insurance company, of a depositor in a mutual savings association, or a similar proprietary interest, is a "financial interest" in. the organization only if the outcome of the proceeding could substantially affect the value of the interest;
(iv) ownership of government securities is a "financial interest" in the issuer only if the outcome of the proceeding could substantially affect the value of the securities;
(v) an interest as a taxpayer or utility ratepayer, or any similar interest, is not a "financial interest" unless the outcome of the proceeding could substantially affect the liability of the judge or a person related to him within the third degree more than other judges.
(5) The parties to a proceeding may waive any ground for recusal after it is fully disclosed on the record.
(6) If a judge does not discover that he is recused under subparagraphs (2)(e) or (2)(f)(iii) until after he has devoted substantial time to the matter, he is not required to recuse himself if he or the person related to him divests himself of the interest that would otherwise require recusal.
Amended by order of April 24, 1990, eff. Sept. 1, 1990: The grounds for a judge’s mandatory recusal have been expanded from those in prior Rule 18b(2).
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|July 15, 1987, eff. Jan. 1, 1988||July 5 & 22, 2011, eff. Aug. 1, 2011|