Your call to us and the help we provide is confidential.
We understand your concerns about privacy and confidentiality.
JCJ is equally sensitive about your career and reputation.
We know it is difficult to ask for help. JCJ discreetly provides resources, support and information.
We Protect Your Identity and Information
- JCJ does not report or disclose any identifying information to the Supreme Court, the Judicial Conduct Board, the Disciplinary Board, the Board of Law Examiners or any other agency of the Supreme Court; nor do we report or disclose any identifying information to the Conference of State Trial Judges, Pennsylvania Bar Association, local bar associations or any judicial or law related organization.
- We do not report any identifying information to anyone without your prior consent.
- You may choose to remain anonymous and still receive JCJ services.
- Your consultation with a healthcare provider (provided and paid for by JCJ) is also confidential and protected in accordance with state and federal regulations concerning privacy and confidentiality.
Guidance from the Supreme Court on Confidentiality & Duty to Report
Canon 2, PA Code of Judicial Conduct
The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania recognizes that judges and lawyers may become ill and need to seek specialized treatment. The Court further recognizes that fear of disclosure will prevent many from seeking help. Canon 2, Rule 2.14 of the Pa Code of Judicial Conduct states: “A judge having a reasonable belief that the performance of a lawyer or another judge is impaired by drugs or alcohol, or by a mental, emotional, or physical condition, shall take appropriate action, which may include a confidential referral to a lawyer or judicial assistance program.” [JCJ and LCL are the Commonwealth’s approved assistance programs.] Comment (2) of Rule 2.14 states: “Taking or initiating corrective action by way of referral to an assistance program may satisfy a judge’s responsibility under this Rule. Assistance programs have many approaches for offering help to impaired judges and lawyers, such as intervention, counseling, or referral to appropriate health care professionals. Depending upon the gravity of the conduct that has come to the judge’s attention, however, the judge may be required to take other action, such as reporting the impaired judge or lawyer to the appropriate authority, agency, or body. See Rule 2.15.” Emphasis added.
Rule 8.3, PA Rules of Professional Conduct
Canon 2 is analogous to Rule 8.3 in the Rules of Professional Conduct that requires lawyers to report the substantial misconduct of another lawyer or judge. Rule 8.3 (c) provides an exception to the duty to report: “The Rule does not require disclosure of information otherwise protected by Rule 1.6 or information gained by a lawyer or judge while participating in an approved lawyers assistance program.” [Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers and Judges Concerned for Judges are the Commonwealth’s approved assistance programs.] Comment 7 explains: “Information about a lawyer’s or judge’s misconduct or fitness may be received by a lawyer in the course of that lawyer’s participation in an approved lawyers or judges assistance program. In that circumstance, providing for an exception to the reporting requirements of paragraphs (a) and (b) of this Rule encourages lawyers and judges to seek treatment through such a program. Conversely, without such an exception, lawyers and judges may hesitate to seek assistance from these programs, which may then result in additional harm to their professional careers and additional injury to the welfare of clients and to the public.” Emphasis added.