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There are a variety of circumstances where a court appointed lawyer may be appropriate.  You have to show that you are indigent and have to be approved by the court. As many people know in criminal cases, because of some constitutional protections you are entitled to a lawyer and again, a court appointed one if […]

Massachusetts lawyers must keep what statements you make to him/her confidential when you speak to him/her privately.  Any conversation that you have is considered confidential.  It is called the “Attorney Client Privilege” and there are strict rules of confidentiality that only apply to the lawyer, but also to staff members in the lawyer’s office. There […]

It is called an “Uncontested Divorce.”  If you or your soon to be ex-spouse are able to resolve things amicably and agree on all issues which can include dividing assets, debt, child support, alimony, custody, parenting with the children, health insurance and other issues, then you can prepare the necessary documents including a Joint Petition […]

Can you change the name of the father on a Massachusetts Birth Certificate? This is a fairly frequent question that people ask. Sometimes there is a question about not knowing who the father is at the time of the birth.  You could be married to someone who is not actually the biological father; or even […]

There is an Ombudsman office and their phone number is (617) 748-2444 or the email is dcfombudsman@state.ma.us. They are an avenue beyond the DCF office that you can contact for different aspects of the case; including issues with DCF office, the policies, actions or service plan that is being involved with. It is not a […]

This is relatively new. It used to be that you would need to hire your own attorney, then only in DCF cases, criminal cases or other cases when an attorney be appointed, but now there have been a larger number of attorneys being appointed for both parents and children. It is not automatic, and somebody […]

It is called Care and Protection of Walt.  It is a 2017 decision where DCF needs to make reasonable efforts to avoid removal of children and to reunify families after the children are removed.  The Juvenile Court needs to enforce these requirements through reasonable efforts and it has significant ability to order DCF to provide […]

Arrive on time. Many times, people do not give enough time to find parking, to go through medal detectors, it might not take a cell phone; which in most courts they do not allow, and you may have to go back to the car. So, giving yourself plenty of time this is very important you […]

The spouse paying alimony has been able to deduct the amount paid on his/her tax return and the spouse receiving it must report as income. However, for future divorce actions beginning in 2019 the spouse paying the alimony will not be able to deduct it and spouse receiving it will not have to report alimony […]

Can I negotiate to give my spouse custody in exchange for no child support? Massachusetts you are not able to legally waive custody in exchange for child support in almost all cases.  There is an exception if there is an adoption by a step-parent. Generally, child support considers the child not the parents. In addition, […]