Motions for Recusal

Motions for Recusal of a Trial Judge are consistent.  [The Uniform Justice Court Rules are different, and there is no similar provision in the Youth Court Rules.

Uniform Circuit and County Court Rule 1.15 and Uniform Chancery Court Rule 1.11- MOTIONS FOR RECUSAL OF JUDGES

Any party may move for the recusal of a judge of the circuit or county [chancery] court if it appears that the judge’s impartiality might be questioned by a reasonable person knowing all the circumstances, or for other grounds provided in the Code of Judicial Conduct or otherwise as provided by law. A motion seeking recusal shall be filed with an affidavit of the party or the party’s attorney setting forth the factual basis underlying the asserted grounds for recusal and declaring that the motion is filed in good faith and that the affiant truly believes the facts underlying the grounds stated to be true. Such motion shall, in the first instance, be filed with the judge who is the subject of the motion within 30 days following notification to the parties of the name of the judge assigned to the case; or, if it is based upon facts which could not reasonably have been known to the filing party within such time, it shall be filed within 30 days after the filing party could reasonably discover the facts underlying the grounds asserted. The subject judge shall consider and rule on the motion within 30 days of the filing of the motion, with hearing if necessary. If a hearing is held, it shall be on the record in open court. The denial of a motion to recuse is subject to review by the Supreme Court on motion of the party filing the motion as provided in M.R.A.P. 48B.

If a judge of the circuit, chancery or county court shall deny a motion seeking the trial judge’s recusal, or if within 30 days following the filing of the motion for recusal the judge has not ruled, the filing party may within 14 days following the judge’s ruling, or 14 days following the expiration of the 30 days allowed for ruling, seek review of the judge’s action by the Supreme Court. A true copy of any order entered by the subject judge on the  question of recusal and transcript of any hearing thereon shall be submitted with the petition in the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court will not order recusal unless the decision of the trial judge is found to be an abuse of discretion. Otherwise, procedure in the Supreme Court shall be in accordance with M.R.A.P. 21. Appointment of another judge to hear the case shall be made as otherwise provided by law.

Should the Recusal rules be tied to the “major donor” provision of the Code of Judicial Conduct?

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