The Illinois Supreme Court has adopted a new Code of Judicial Conduct, including guidance on the use of social media and updated financial disclosures. The Code of Judicial Conduct establishes standards of ethical conduct for judges and judicial candidates
The code will take effect on January 1, 2023, replacing the previous code which has largely been in place since 1993.
The new Code is based on years of study by the Illinois Judicial Ethics Committee (IJEC) and is based on the American Bar Association’s Model Code of Judicial Conduct, which serves as the basis for judicial ethics codes in 37 states.
Social media: Paragraph 4 lays out the ways the Code governs a judge’s personal and judicial activities “in person, on paper, and by telephone or other electronic means,” including social media.
Financial Disclosures: The yearly financial disclosures have been updated, including requiring more detailed information on assets owned and the names of lawyers and law firms worked with in the previous three years.
Recognized family relations: The new Code adds “domestic partner” to recognized family relations. The definition is consistent with the common understanding of domestic, non-marital relationships.