Senior Judge Lisa M. Traylor-Wolff, who faced a disciplinary action on charges she had a sexual relationship with a client, is no longer allowed to serve as a judge, the Indiana Supreme Court ordered Tuesday.
Traylor-Wolff and the Judicial Qualifications Commission entered into a settlement agreement that stipulated that the senior judge violated Rule 1.7(a)(2) of the Rules of Professional Conduct and Rules 1.2 and 3.1(C) of the Code of Judicial Conduct when she had an improper romantic relationship with a client while serving as his public defender. At the time, she was also certified to serve as a senior judge.
The justices agreed with the settlement terms which, in addition to the ban from judicial service, include a suspension from practice for one year. All but 45 days of the suspension is conditionally stayed subject to completion of two years of probation, in which Traylor-Wolff must work with the Judges and Lawyers Assistance Program, avoid contact with the client, pay the costs of this proceeding and avoid committing any further violations of the Rules of Professional Conduct.
Traylor-Wolff’s law license will be automatically reinstated as long as she complies with the terms of her probation.
The justices dismissed Count 1 of the JQC’s complaint that alleged Traylor-Wolff violated Professional Conduct Rule 1.8(j), which prohibits a lawyer from having a sexual relationship with a client unless a consensual relationship existed before the client-lawyer relationship began.