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Legal Blog

Guardianship v. Adoption

I was volunteering as lawyer of the day in court last week and a very nice gentleman came in and asked for advice about adopting his niece. I asked him a bunch of questions and determined that pursuing a guardianship was probably the best option for him. The biggest difference between adoption and guardianship is that adoption is permanent. The implications of this are that the biological parents can never come back to regain their

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How to change a divorce agreement.

All too often, I have people ask me if they can change their divorce agreement. And the answer is, maybe. When you get divorced, you divide up your property. That is permanent and you cannot go back later and change anything. Matters relating to child support and child related issues are modifiable but only if you can prove a change in circumstances. An example of this would be: let’s say you lost your job and

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Why you need a good lawyer for a car accident.

Getting into a car accident is a real pain. You are likely to lose money in various ways and hiring a good lawyer can help rectify that. First of all, if your vehicle is totaled, the insurance company doesn’t give you the amount you would need to go out and buy that exact same car. They give you what they call replacement value and it doesn’t take into account the mark up or profit a

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Recent developments in the way Middlesex County handles adoptions!

Since Trump took office, I have had a surprising number of same sex couples come to me seeking adoption of their children by the non biological parent. As many of you know, same sex Marriage is recognized in this country by all but 13 States. Massachusetts was the first such state to make it legal. Many of these couples have begun raising children of their own. In the cases of female couples, generally one of

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Massachusetts Senate passes bill requiring DCF to keep siblings together!

The Massachusetts Senate recently passed a bill that requires the State Courts and the Department of Children and Families (DCF) to keep siblings together unless they can show clear and convincing evidence as to why the siblings cannot be placed together. Finally some good news when it comes to placement. Massachusetts is in dire need of foster homes for children in custody of DCF. If you are interested in becoming a foster parent, please visit

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Abatement Ab Initio and Aaron Hernandez

Aaron Hernandez’s conviction was vacated today. The legal term for this is abatement ab initio which dates back to common law in Massachusetts. If the appeal process resulting from a conviction to a crime has not been completed and the appellant dies, their conviction gets wiped out. The reasoning behind this is that they didn’t have the chance to exonerate himself and prove his innocence. This has occurred two other times in recent years as

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What is a no fault divorce?

In a no-fault divorce, the parties state in their filings that the marriage has broken down irretrievably or that the couple has irreconcilable differences. In other words, if one person wants a divorce, the couple will be divorced. In a fault divorce, the Plaintiff must prove that the Defendant has committed a wrong (cruel and abusive treatment is an at fault grounds for divorce in MA) that allows the Plaintiff to get a divorce. People

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What to expect at a clerk magistrate’s hearing?

A Clerk Magistrate Hearing is a very important part of our criminal justice system. In many cases, instead of the police arresting you for a crime, you are summoned to the court via mail for a Clerk Magistrate Hearing. This hearing is your opportunity to tell your side of the story in hopes that the clerk does not move the matter forward for formal charges that remain on your criminal record. Getting the clerk to

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Collision coverage, yes or no?

People often ask me why they should carry collision coverage on their vehicles. It’s expensive. This is what I tell them. When you’re in an accident and it’s your fault, your insurance company will pay for the repair or the value of the vehicle less your deductible. That can be a pretty large expense to have to pay for if you don’t carry collision coverage. You can’t plan when an accident is going to occur

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