RULE 15. OATHS; SUBPOENA POWER
(a) Oaths. Oaths and affirmations may be administered by any member of the Commission, disciplinary counsel, or any other person authorized by law to administer oaths and affirmations.
(b) Subpoenas for Investigation.
(1) Disciplinary counsel may compel by subpoena the attendance of the judge or witnesses and the production of pertinent books, papers, documents (whether in typed, printed, written, digital, electronic, or other format), and other tangible evidence for the purposes of investigation. Disciplinary counsel shall conduct any appearance in accordance the provisions of Rule 19(c)(3).
(2) In the investigation stage of the proceedings, a judge under investigation may request the issuance of subpoenas for specific witnesses or documents by making the request to the Commission. The Commission chair, vice-chair, or Commission counsel may direct disciplinary counsel to issue the subpoena(s). Disciplinary counsel shall provide the judge with copies of documents submitted in response to the subpoena(s). Disciplinary counsel shall conduct any appearance in accordance with the provisions of Rule 19(c)(3).
(c) Subpoenas for Deposition or Hearing. After formal charges are filed, either disciplinary counsel or respondent may compel by subpoena the attendance of witnesses and the production of pertinent books, papers, and documents at a deposition or hearing held under these rules.
(d) Enforcement of Subpoenas. The willful failure to comply with a subpoena issued under this rule may be punished as a contempt of the Supreme Court. Upon proper application, the Supreme Court may enforce the attendance and testimony of any witnesses and the production of any documents subpoenaed.
(e) Quashing or Modifying Subpoenas; Interlocutory Appeals Prohibited.
(1) Any attack on the validity of a subpoena shall be heard and determined by the chair or the vice chair of the Commission during an investigation, or by the chair of the hearing panel before which the matter is pending, who may enter an order granting or denying the relief or modifying the subpoena. A request for an extension of time to comply with a subpoena during an investigation shall be heard and determined by the chair or the vice-chair of the Commission.
(2) Any resulting order shall not be subject to an interlocutory appeal; instead these decisions must be challenged by filing objections or a brief following service of the hearing panel report pursuant to Rule 27(a).
(f) Subpoena Pursuant to Law of Another Jurisdiction. Whenever a subpoena is sought in this State pursuant to the law or disciplinary rules of another jurisdiction for use in lawyer or judicial disciplinary or disability proceedings, and where the issuance of the subpoena has been duly approved under the applicable laws or rules of the other jurisdiction, the chair or vice-chair or a panel of the Commission upon a showing of good cause, may issue a subpoena to compel the attendance of witnesses and the production of documents in the county where the witness resides or is employed or elsewhere in this state as agreed by the witness. Service, enforcement, or challenges to such subpoenas shall be as provided in these rules.
Last amended by order dated September 28, 2022.