This code applies to all fulltime, parttime and temporary court system employees, who are identified in this code as court professionals.
The code is intended to complement separate professional codes that bind court system professionals.
Other Professional Codes
This code is intended to complement codes maintained by other professional organizations, not to conflict with them. Employees, such as court interpreters, probation officers, or staff attorneys, bound by other codes, should still find this code instructive as an ethical guideline.
The Struggle for Relevance
As court professionals, we must continually evaluate this code to ensure it is meaningful. Frequently staff have commented on some canons that can prove difficult to follow. Rather than struggling to reconciling the canon to one’s daily life, staff have recommended maintaining the code, and yet acknowledge that in certain cases they would not follow it. (There is a specific example where a staffer said “family comes first.” We need to make this code relevant and practical to ensure professionals can and do follow it.
More discussion needs to ensue regarding how the Model Code addresses the relationship of vendors and individuals under contact to the court. To what extent are these individuals obligated to follow the Mode Code?
The Applicability section of the New Jersey Code of Conduct for Judicial Employees states that the code, “applies to all nonjudge employees performing judicial branch functions, including temporary employees. It takes precedence, to the extent it is more restrictive, over any professional code of ethics to which the employee is subject. The Code does not apply to those employees of county sheriffs who provide only security services. This Code shall not limit union activities by members of labor organizations that are matters of right under the Constitution of the United States, the Constitution of New Jersey, or statutes applicable to and accepted by the judiciary, or that have been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey.”