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Massachusetts Civil Litigation Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation and Collections for Massachusetts on
Q: Is supplementary process required before requesting wage or bank garnishment?

Is supplementary process required before requesting wage or bank garnishment via trustee process? Will court allow me to skip the step of supplementary process and go straight to trustee process?

Christopher Tolley
Christopher Tolley
answered on Dec 27, 2022

I know of nothing requiring it. I have never had a judge deny a trustee process attachment because I had not pursued supplementary process first. However, allowing a trustee process attachment is within the court's discretion.

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation and Collections for Massachusetts on
Q: Collecting on a civil judgment in Massachusetts.

I have a civil judgment in Massachusetts. I want to collect on the judgment by a wage or bank account garnishment, I understand I need to do a trustee process. Does that mean I have to file a second complaint (complaint on judgment) and pay court costs service of process fees again?

Do I... Read more »

Christopher Tolley
Christopher Tolley
answered on Dec 27, 2022

Your can seek a bank account trustee process based on your current judgment. In order to trustee process wages, you have to institute a suit on the judgment.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law, Civil Litigation and Civil Rights for Massachusetts on
Q: My Attorney has reached an agreement to settle my lawsuit, but with conditions I didn’t agree to.

It’s a discrimination lawsuit

William J. Amann
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William J. Amann
answered on Dec 11, 2022

Inform your attorney of this in writing and speak with your lawyer about what sounds like a serious misunderstanding.

2 Answers | Asked in Civil Litigation, Family Law and Real Estate Law for Massachusetts on
Q: What kind of attorney(s) should i hire if i want to file a complaint in equity and sue in family court for contempt?

i am the child named in a judgment of divorce between parents and became a tenancy in common in properties with step-mother. i am now disabled and the sales will create financial complexities along with a host of difficulties. i have hired a real estate attorney & scheduled to meet soon but i... Read more »

Christopher Tolley
Christopher Tolley
answered on Dec 1, 2022

Optimally you would hire a family law attorney with litigation experience.

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1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Employment Law, Business Law and Civil Litigation for Massachusetts on
Q: How many days does the Law state that a Plaintiff can put their Response to Defendant's Counterclaims in?

Since the Plaintiffs' were over the 20 days from service what is the Motion called that can be put in? How does this Motion work within the Courts and/or Judge?

William J. Amann
PREMIUM
William J. Amann
answered on Oct 24, 2022

20 days from service, see Massachusetts Superior Court Rules 12 and 13.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Civil Litigation, Elder Law and Probate for Massachusetts on
Q: Can an alternate designation written on a will (not a beneficiary) supersede the Heirs-at-law?

A second cousin is named as an alternate in a will. The first cousins are the heirs-at-law. The second cousin is contesting the will.

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa
answered on Jun 28, 2021

If the devisees under the Will are all alive, then it would seem that an alternate designated or conditional beneficiary-devisee would not take under the Will. If the Will is disallowed the heirs under intestacy would take.

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law and Civil Litigation for Massachusetts on
Q: What if I filed a complaint but no answers have come in and it is 35 days now. What do I do now?
Anthony C. Adamopoulos
Anthony C. Adamopoulos
answered on Jun 7, 2021

Assuming you are talking about divorce, "filing a complaint" is not enough to get what you call "answers" and the Rules call "Defendant's Answer".

Have you received and served, according to the Rules, a Summons?

It looks like you are not prepared...
Read more »

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Q: Employer in MA wants to send temp. employees out to get DOT physical exams/certifications. I interpret this as a Hipaa

violation at the very least, since these are employees of staffing agencies, who are the real "covered entities" here. They supply the WC insurance, payroll, are the holders of their personnel records, etc. They also almost all have provisions written into their contracts that state... Read more »

J. Heath Dillon
J. Heath Dillon
answered on Dec 29, 2020

The employer can communicate directly with the temp employment agency that supplied the employees of the employer's requirement that the temp employees obtain and pass a DOT physical. It is, likely, not appropriate for the employer to communicate this need directly to contracted employees... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law and Civil Litigation for Massachusetts on
Q: Hello I want to go to court to get custody of my dogs and so I can you please advice me on what I should do? Thank you

Hello,

I have a question about two of my dogs. I was with someone for 6 years and after a year in a relationship. He gifted me a dog. I also ended up buying my other dogs. In that relationship every time I tried to leave he would threatened to take both dogs. It took me a while before I... Read more »

Brian Waller
Brian Waller
answered on Dec 23, 2020

Even though dogs are part of the family, this actually isn't a family law issue, it is a property issue. In divorces, pets are handled in the same way as property and divided between the parties in some way. Sometimes there is an every-other-week arrangement like you agreed to previously. When... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation for Massachusetts on
Q: How do I collect the money when my lawyer has been telling me for years the defendant will be paying and I get nothing

I won a judgment

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa
answered on Oct 23, 2020

This sounds odd. Take your Judgment to another attorney to review.

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Consumer Law, Contracts and Entertainment / Sports for Massachusetts on
Q: Fitness training company charging me for services that were not provided. What are my options?

I signed up for personal fitness training with a company for 6 months from Dec-2019 to May-2020 ($600 for each month & 10 sessions each month). No services were provided between Mar 2020 to May 2020 due to COVID. The company was not reachable on phone during that time for cancellation enquiry.... Read more »

Christopher Tolley
Christopher Tolley
answered on Oct 9, 2020

Most lawyers' rates would make legal representation impractical. Look carefully at your contract and see what your options are. Contact your credit card company and have them stop the automatic payments. I suggest you consider filing a small claims suit yourself. If nothing else, it will get... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Appeals / Appellate Law, Civil Litigation and Traffic Tickets for Massachusetts on
Q: I got my very first ticket and the officer told me to appeal it. Should I bother doing it or just pay it?

I wanted dismissed if possible, but i'm not sure if it's worth it. I was at fault so what would i say in court? I was driving and passed a red light that changed just before i past it. is the officer telling me that he's not going to appear in court? i've had my license only for... Read more »

Lissa McKinney
Lissa McKinney
answered on Aug 25, 2020

APPEAL THE TICKET!! There are a number of very important reassons to take the appeal. First, you are under the age of 25 and in the age bracket where there can be larger SDIP points assessed or possible surcharges on a policy. Second, if you have 3 speeding tickets or 5 overall moving violations... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Appeals / Appellate Law, Civil Litigation and Legal Malpractice for Massachusetts on
Q: Being Sued and Need To Respond to Get Suit Thrown Out or Delayed

This is messy I know, but I'm appreciative of the help. I'm representing myself pro se in a divorce trial. Not my choice. My previous law firm did not file an appearance, they were "consulting", they did a lot of damage on rules of evidence. I didn't pay them. They are... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa
answered on Aug 13, 2020

Your question is very confusing. Are you seeking to file a legal malpractice claim? If so, that is an area of specialization and you can inquire using this forum. If you are seeking pro bono legal assistance, also, then there are some resources which may be available to you . You need to tailor... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts, Business Law and Civil Litigation for Massachusetts on
Q: The plumber who is fixing my boiler has been in and out over 3 weeks. If i hire someone else instead, do I have to pay?

It's been 3 weeks without hot water, the plumber I called keeps not showing up, or he will just suddenly show up at 8pm. He hasn't fixed my boiler in three attempts. No paperwork has been signed, and he hasn't really communicated the problem. If i hire someone else to fix my boiler,... Read more »

Christopher Tolley
Christopher Tolley
answered on Jul 16, 2020

If you have not agreed on the work he is to perform and what you are required to pay him, you do not have a contract. He may have a right to compensation for his visits but it would be up to him to show what he did and the basis for any compensation he claims to be entitled to. I suggest you hire a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Civil Litigation for Massachusetts on
Q: I need to know legally where I stand with child support. X had c/s reduced 6 years ago due to no jobs but does very well

He just bought a $700,000. house, goes to the Caribbean 2-3 times a year and does not cover my health insurance and it’s in our divorce. The $49 a week I get in c/s is not enough

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa
answered on Jun 9, 2020

It sounds like a Modification of Child Support matter can be filed based upon his material change in circumstances . The current Guidelines would be applicable, also. It also sounds like he is in Contempt with regard to your health insurance coverage if that was not changed in the earlier... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Civil Litigation and Constitutional Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Does the Governor of Massachusetts have the legal authority to order me to wear a mask because of the coronavirus?

Doesn't this order infringe on my constitutional rights?

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
answered on May 17, 2020

Constitutional rights are balanced with public health interests in these settings. Good luck

Tim Akpinar

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Bankruptcy, Consumer Law and Contracts for Massachusetts on
Q: Can I reopen a CH 13 BK from years ago as its related to CURRENT litigation?

This CH 13 BK and adversary proceeding was handled by an attorney I hired (and who is now deceased). I ONLY started digging into the facts because the opposing attorney brought it up There are strong possibilities that not only was FOTC committed, but also, the judge's order was not complied... Read more »

Timothy Denison
Timothy Denison
answered on May 5, 2020

You can try. The reopening fee is $260.

1 Answer | Asked in Bankruptcy and Civil Litigation for Massachusetts on
Q: How do I file a motion for relief from the automatic stay associated with a debtors bankruptcy in MA?

We hired a general contractor to build an addition to our home, and he filed bankruptcy in the middle of the project. We can attempt to obtain money from a state guarantee fund, however in order to file a claim with this fund we need a judgement against the contractor. In order to obtain a... Read more »

Timothy Denison
Timothy Denison
answered on Mar 18, 2020

You are really going to need a lawyer to guide you through an adversarial proceeding to attempt to obtain a judgment. Consult a competent bankruptcy attorney to discuss your options.

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation and Insurance Bad Faith for Massachusetts on
Q: Can I sue my grandmothers car insurance for dropping her just because I have a bad driving record?

I have my own car and insurance and it has nothing to do with her.they want to punish her for my midterms and it’s not cool

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
answered on Feb 22, 2020

No. Insurance carriers can drop insureds for a number of reasons - late payment, risk, claims, etc. You could double check with a local attorney for a second opinion. As for the driving record, it could be worthwhile to look into a defensive driving course to see how many points could be taken off,... Read more »

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