Florida Ethics Committee Says Judges, Lawyers Should Not be Facebook Friends

leifertlaw January 4, 2010 Courts

A November 17 ruling from the state’s Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee says that Florida attorneys and judges should not be “friends” on Facebook, the popular online social networking site.

The committee ruled that online “friendships” could create a false impression that lawyers are able to influence their judge friends. A few members of the committee dissented on the grounds that Facebook relationships are more like a list of contacts rather than actual “friendships.”

However, the committe ruled a judge can post comments on another judge’s profile and a judge’s campaign may have a lawyer as a “fan” during judicial elections.

While the Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee cannot officially mandate what judges do, a spokesperson for the Florida Supreme Court said most judges will probably follow the ruling out of caution and the need to appear impartial.

Source: Fla. judges, lawyers must ‘unfriend’ on Facebook, Associated Press, December 11, 2009
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