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RULE 19-303.5. IMPARTIALITY AND DECORUM OF THE TRIBUNAL (3.5)

West's Annotated Code of MarylandMaryland Rules

West's Annotated Code of Maryland
Maryland Rules
Title 19. Attorneys
Chapter 300. Maryland Attorneys' Rules of Professional Conduct
Advocate [Rules 19-303.1 to 19-303.9]
MD Rules Attorneys, Rule 19-303.5
RULE 19-303.5. IMPARTIALITY AND DECORUM OF THE TRIBUNAL (3.5)
(a) An attorney shall not:
(1) seek to influence a judge, prospective, qualified, or sworn juror, or other official by means prohibited by law;
(2) before the trial of a case with which the attorney is connected, communicate outside the course of official proceedings with anyone known to the attorney to be on the jury list for trial of the case;
(3) during the trial of a case with which the attorney is connected, communicate outside the course of official proceedings with any member of the jury;
(4) during the trial of a case with which the attorney is not connected, communicate outside the course of official proceedings with any member of the jury about the case;
(5) after discharge of a jury from further consideration of a case with which the attorney is connected, ask questions of or make comments to a jury member that are calculated to harass or embarrass the jury member or to influence the jury member's actions in future jury service;
(6) conduct a vexatious or harassing investigation of any prospective, qualified, or sworn juror;
(7) communicate ex parte about an adversary proceeding with the judge or other official before whom the proceeding is pending, except as permitted by law;
(8) discuss with a judge potential employment of the judge if the attorney or a firm with which the attorney is associated has a matter that is pending before the judge; or
(9) engage in conduct intended to disrupt a tribunal.
(b) An attorney who has knowledge of any violation of section (a) of this Rule, any improper conduct by a prospective, qualified, or sworn juror or any improper conduct by another towards a prospective, qualified, or sworn juror, shall report it promptly to the court or other appropriate authority.
COMMENT
[1] Many forms of improper influence upon a tribunal are proscribed by criminal law. Others are specified in Title 18, Chapter 100, Maryland Code of Judicial Conduct, with which an advocate should be familiar. An attorney is required to avoid contributing to a violation of such provisions.
[2] The advocate's function is to present evidence and argument so that the cause may be decided according to law. Refraining from abusive or obstreperous conduct is a corollary of the advocate's right to speak on behalf of litigants. An attorney may stand firm against abuse by a judge but should avoid reciprocation; the judge's default is no justification for similar dereliction by an advocate. An advocate can present the cause, protect the record for subsequent review and preserve professional integrity by patient firmness no less effectively than by belligerence or theatrics.
[3] With regard to the prohibition in subsection (a)(2) of this Rule against communications with anyone on “the jury list,” see Md. Rules 2-512 (c) and 4-312 (c).
Model Rules Comparison: Rule 19-303.5 (3.5) retains the former Maryland Rule text and comments, except that subsection (a)(8) is new and the reference in Comment [1] is to the Code of Judicial Conduct. Changes in ABA Model Rule 3.5 were not adopted.

Credits

[Adopted June 6, 2016, eff. July 1, 2016.]
MD R Attorneys, Rule 19-303.5, MD R ATTORNEYS Rule 19-303.5
Current with amendments received through December 15, 2019.
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