Judicial Misconduct Dictionary: Impartial


The Minnesota Code of Judicial Conduct defines “impartial” as,

“Impartial,” “impartiality,” and “impartially” mean absence of bias or prejudice in favor of, or against, particular parties or classes of parties, as well as maintenance of an open mind in considering issues that may come before a judge.  See Canons 1, 2, and 4, and Rules 1.2, 2.2, 2.10, 2.11, 2.13, 3.1, 3.12, 3.13, 4.1, and 4.2.

In essence this means that judge cannot improperly be “for” or “against” a party appearing before him or her in a case.  The case law also tells us that judges cannot be improperly “for” or “against” a particular attorney for a party.

And, a judge cannot be improperly “for” or “against” a particularly type of party, such as people from a certain place or with a particular belief system, religion, etc.