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Does DCF always go to Court if a 51A report or 51B is Supported?             Absolutely not.  DCF may go to Court, but much more often they do not, and they complete an Assessment; which the Assessment is a longer process but determines whether or not they think that the family needs services and who can […]

Should I sign Releases that DCF is asking me to sign?                         It depends.  Sometimes it makes sense to sign all Release with no restrictions. Sometimes it makes sense to sign no Releases. Sometimes it makes sense to do a “Limited Release” where you will agree to allow DCF to speak to certain people, but only […]

In Massachusetts DCF Cases, what does Dual Omissions Mean?               DCF is tasked with protecting children from neglect, abuse and promoting family stability.  Sometimes, the Dual Omissions can end up being in conflict and the idea in terms of looking at both respecting the rights of families to be free from state intervention versus trying to […]

Does the Parents Parental Rights need to be terminated in order to Allow a Guardianship?                                                                                                      No.  Many times, in Juvenile Court in a care and protection case, DCF or the Court will want a Termination in Parental Rights, but that does need to occur.  In Probate and Family Court, there is more often no Termination […]

What is a Guardian?                                                                              A Guardian is usually a person who is appointed by the court and authorized to make decisions for another person; sometimes known as a “Ward.”  The Guardians are appointed for individuals who the court determines not capable of managing their own affairs.  The Court considers most minors of being incapable of […]

There appears to be a proposed agreement in Massachusetts between the defense attorneys and the DA’s office because of the breathalyzer test problems since 2015 with some of the flaws.  A great deal of the breathalyzers was shown to have flaws and showing to have issues with the evidence.  It is not yet approved by […]

What is a QDRO?  A QDRO is a Qualified Domestic Relations Order.  It is a mechanism that the Courts allow to divide retirement accounts in divorces. The technical requirements and it needs to be approved by the Court and it needs to be in conformity with the retirement account as well.  It is a way […]

Should I try and hide or move my assets to protect them prior to filing for divorce?  No.  Not only is it unethical to do so, but you could get into trouble because of you filing documents under the pains and penalties of perjury and testifying before the Judge.  In addition, even beyond getting in […]

In Massachusetts can Pets be part of the Divorce?  When couples divorce, people fight over a lot of different things. Many times, it is financial, such as marital homes, businesses or pensions. There are also custody disputes about children. However, it is becoming more frequent that there are disputes about pets.  Most of the time […]

At a DCF Fair Hearing can Hearsay Evidence and Credibility Issues be brought up?  The Fair Hearing Officer determines what evidence is reliable enough to be used at the Fair Hearing. They may allow hearsay evidence which is evidence that is not made by somebody that is present at the hearing, but by somebody that […]