June 26, 2020
We respond to your inquiry (20-02) asking if you, a full-time judge, may serve as a compensated referee for certain private not-for-profit high school and grammar school sports leagues.1 You state the compensation is a set fee per game, less than $50 in one league and less than $100 in the other league.
The Rules Governing Judicial Conduct do not prohibit a full-time judge from serving as a referee for school sports and accepting reasonable compensation from a not-for-profit school or sports league for this activity (see 22 NYCRR 100.4[H][a] [compensation must not “exceed a reasonable amount” or “exceed what a person who is not a judge would receive for the same activity”]). However, compensation in excess of $150.00 is subject to reporting requirements set forth in 22 NYCRR 100.4(H)(2).
Enclosed for your review are Opinions 17-01 and 12-177.
Very truly yours,
George D. Marlow, Assoc Justice Appellate Div., First Dept. (Ret)
Hon. Margaret T. Walsh
Supreme Court Justice
1 Because these schools are not “financially supported primarily by New York State or any of its political subdivisions,” Section 100.4(H)(1)(c)(2) does not apply.