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Opinion

Opinion Opinion 2005-4

Date: 10/18/2005
Organization: Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court

Ethical Opinions for Clerks of the Courts

Bail setting in the evening at police station in town where clerk resides

The Committee has received your email inquiry regarding the setting of bail. You state that you are an assistant clerk in a division of the _______ Court. You have asked the Committee whether you are authorized to set bail in the evenings at the police station in the community where you live.

The Advisory Committee's authority is limited to rendering advisory opinions which interpret the provisions of the Code of Professional Responsibility for Clerks of the Courts. Provided that you comply with the provisions of Canon 4, Impartiality and Disqualification and Canon 5, Outside Activities, we see nothing in the Code that would prohibit you from setting bail after work hours. Otherwise, the authority to set bail and the rules governing those who set it are beyond the jurisdiction of the Committee.

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