Mandatory Judicial Campaign Ethics Training
- Who must take the training?
- When must I complete the training?
- How can I complete the training?
Who must take the training?
The training requirement applies to "all candidates for elective judicial office in the Unified Court System except for town and village justices." 22 NYCRR 100.5(A)(4)(f). It applies equally to "[a] judge or a non-judge." 22 NYCRR 100.5(A)(4).
A candidate who fails to complete the training at all, or fails to complete it in a timely manner, will be subject to discipline.
When must I complete the training?
Earliest Date: Judicial candidates are encouraged to take the training early in their current campaign cycle, even if they have not yet received a party's nomination.
Latest Date: The training must be completed "no later than 30 days after receiving the nomination for judicial office." 22 NYCRR 100.5(A)(4)(f).
For candidates who run in a primary election, the date of nomination is specifically defined as "the date upon which the candidate files a designating petition with the Board of Elections." Id.
If you are not certain when your 30-day time limit begains to run, please ask the JCEC for guidance on your specific circumstances.
Do all candidates have the same training deadline?
Because the 30-day time limit is triggered by the date of nomination (as defined in the rule), different candidates may have different deadlines.
If you are not certain how to calculate your training deadline, please ask the JCEC for guidance on your specific circumstances.
For general planning purposes, we would generally expect candidates' training deadlines to fall within the following timeframes, based on dates seen in the Board of Elections' official political calendar for prior years:
Candidates for Supreme Court: The deadline is typically mid-October (30 days after the judicial nominating convention).
Candidates for City, Civil, County, District, Family, or Surrogate's Court: The deadline is typically early August (30 days after the date of filing a designating petition with the Board of Elections). However, if a candidate receives the nomination through some other method (for example, by being "substituted in" for another candidate), the deadline would be 30 days after the date of nomination.
Please call the JCEC at 1-888-600-5232 for more information or to register.
What if I believe that my time to take the training has expired?
Candidates should endeavor to complete the training as soon as possible, and should contact the JCEC promptly at 1-888-600-5232 if they encounter difficulties in doing so.
How can I complete the training?
Online Training Video. In most cases, candidates must watch the training video online and fax in their completed affirmation form.
Please call the JCEC at 1-888-600-5232 to register and request access to the video. Candidates will receive an email containing a link to the course materials and affirmation. Candidates must complete this affirmation (including the two-part code contained in the video) and return it in order to receive credit for the training.
"Fast-Track" Program. If you completed the full 2-hour training program last year and are running again for judicial office this year, you may be eligible for the internet-based "fast-track" program.
Please call the JCEC at 1-888-600-5232 for more information and to register.
I am running for a town or village justice position. May I take the training?
We believe all candidates for elective judicial office in New York will benefit from a greater understanding of the campaign ethics rules. Town and village justice candidates are welcome to watch the video, although the training is not required for them.
Please contact the JCEC at 1-888-600-5232 for more information or to register.
May key campaign staff take the training?
The candidate’s staff may not take the training in lieu of the candidate. All candidates must personally complete a training session.
That said, we believe judicial candidates' campaign staff will benefit from a greater understanding of the campaign ethics rules. Thus, campaign staff are welcome to watch the video, although this will not satisfy the candidate's training requirement.
Must I re-take the course this year if I saw it last year?
Each judicial candidate must complete one training program per election cycle. The training materials are updated regularly to reflect rule changes, new opinions and other matters relevant to judicial campaigns. Attending the training in one election cycle does not satisfy the requirement for another election cycle.
However, if you completed the full two-hour training program last year and are running again this year, please contact the JCEC at 1-888-600-5232 and ask if you are eligible for the "Fast-Track" Program for repeat candidates (described below).
What is the "Fast-Track" Program?
Under this internet-based program, repeat candidates who completed the training last year will not need to watch the training video two years in a row. Instead, on request, they will be given access to a password-protected page on the JCEC web site which contains instructions and materials. They must review certain specified campaign ethics opinions, take and pass a short quiz on selected judicial campaign ethics topics, and affirm that they have reviewed the specified opinions.
If you wish to participate in this "Fast-Track" Program, you must call the JCEC to confirm your eligibility and to register. Candidates who fail to meet all the requirements under the Fast-Track Program must watch the training video to complete the training requirement.
Please contact the JCEC at 1-888-600-5232 for more information.