A. Jurisdiction. Procedural rules for lawyer disability and discipline are hereby adopted and promulgated. Under Article VI, Section 3 of the North Dakota Constitution, the court has authority within this state for the development and administration of a system for lawyer disability and discipline, and, accordingly, the court has power to prescribe appropriate standards of professional conduct and to establish procedures for lawyer disability and discipline.
B. Policy. Each member of the Bar of North Dakota has taken an oath to support the Constitution and laws of the state and of the United States. As an officer of the North Dakota Supreme Court, each lawyer is charged with obedience to those laws, whether in or out of court, and observance of the highest standards of professional conduct. These rules are promulgated to assure compliance with those standards of conduct.
C. Lawyers. Any lawyer admitted to practice law in this state (including any formerly admitted lawyer with respect to acts committed prior to suspension, disbarment or transfer to any disability status or inactive status, or with respect to acts subsequent thereto which amount to the practice of law or which constitute misconduct subject to sanctions), and any lawyer specially admitted by a court of this state for a particular proceeding, and any lawyer not admitted in this state who practices law or renders legal services in this state is subject to the disability and disciplinary jurisdiction of the court under these rules.
D. Former Judges. A former judge who has resumed status as a lawyer is subject to the jurisdiction of the court under these rules, not only for conduct as a lawyer but also for conduct that occurred while the lawyer was a judge, unless the conduct was the subject of a judicial discipline proceeding as to which there has been a final determination by this court.
E. Incumbent Judges. If an incumbent judge is removed from office in the course of a judicial disability or discipline proceeding, the court shall afford the board and the judge an opportunity to recommend whether lawyer discipline should also be imposed, and if so, the extent of the discipline.