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In part, a mandated reported who in his or her professional capacity has “reasonable cause” to believe that a child is suffering physical or emotional injury that results from either (1) abuse inflicted upon the child which causes harm or substantial risk of harm to the child’s health or welfare( includes sexual abuse); (2)neglect( includes […]

If DCF decides to place children away from the parents or guardians DCF policy is supposed to look for “family first” as placement such as grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousins( also to a certain extent family friends, teachers etc.).  The reason is that the transition will be easier for the child.  You should at least […]

Talking to social workers, court investigators and GAL’s is stressful.  They are looking at you like you are on stage and looking to see if you are a loving, stable and thoughtful parent. A few hints are:  keep focus on children not your or significant other or ex if you need to make focus on […]

There is relatively new law regarding children in foster care or residential treatment.  There is a presumption that child should go to the same school( school of origin) and DCF has a meeting to make this determination.   Parents and children should have a voice as many times DCF will aim for having child go […]

Typically, in most divorce or paternity actions, the Court standard is what is in the child’s best interest. This is not an easy standard to determine. It can vary from child to child. The idea is that it focuses more on what the child’s needs are than on the parents. The law says that the […]

Generally, Probate and Family Court handle custody and visitation and most parenting decisions. This can be involved on divorce cases, separate support cases, paternity cases; where the parties are not married, adoption at many times and other issues. Both Probate Court and District Court along with sometimes Juvenile Court can handle a restraining order or […]

If a prior court order no longer works for the parties or circumstances change the party may seek a modification. The party must file a complaint for modification to change a judgment. A further temporary order may change a prior temporary order. The most common changes are alimony or spousal support, custody and parenting time […]

Filing fees vary depending on the type of court action you are filing eg divorce, modification, contempt.  if you cannot afford the filing fee and summons, you can file a motion to waive fees or be paid by the state.  You need to file an affidavit of indigency and financial statement to have the court […]

“It is called “Continued without a Finding”. It is a type of disposition that has to occur prior to trial. Occasionally it can happen after trial, but typically not, typically a trial is either guilty or not guilty. What a Continuation without a Finding means is that an admission to sufficient facts that the event […]

As an attorney representing clients in the Brockton Courthouse, I have learned many “ins and outs” and some tips that might make things go smoother for you. The main Trial Court Department has significantly changed over the years. When I first practiced in Brockton, Juvenile court was next door to the old Brockton District Court […]