Massachusetts Law Updates

Official Blog of the Massachusetts Trial Court Law Libraries

Monthly Archives: March 2011

Pilot Program at Springfield District Court Starts Friday Posted on Mar 30

A Pilot Program Suspending Certain Requirements of Joint Standing Order No. 1-04 is effective April 1, 2011  at the Springfield District Court for certain civil money damage actions. In actions where all parties are represented by counsel, “parties and their counsel may avoid appearance in court for the   …Continue Reading Pilot Program at Springfield District Court Starts Friday

8th Edition MA Residential Code, effective February 4, 2011 Posted on Mar 29

“The 8th edition residential code (for one and two family dwellings and townhouses three stories and less) became effective with the February 4, 2011 Massachusetts Register. The 7th edition residential code will remain in effect concurrently with the new 8th edition until August 4, 2011.   …Continue Reading 8th Edition MA Residential Code, effective February 4, 2011

Full-Text Nolo Books Online for Free Posted on Mar 25

While our library card holders have access to full text of all Nolo titles from home, now Nolo is offering free access for everybody to a select group of books “in their entirety for free.” Wow! Here’s the list: 8 Ways to Avoid Probate Beat   …Continue Reading Full-Text Nolo Books Online for Free

Recreation vehicle laws stiffened for operators Posted on Mar 22

New operator rules have gone into effect for drivers of off highway vehicles. Chapter 202 of the acts of 2010 adds age limits and other restrictions, and stiffens fines for alcoholic beverage use. Operators under the age of 18 are required to take a safety   …Continue Reading Recreation vehicle laws stiffened for operators

Contingent fee rule changed by SJC Posted on Mar 18

Rule 1.5 of the Rules of Professional Conduct has been significantly amended. The rule governs what attorneys can charge and collect for contingent fees, and took effect March 15. The rule includes two sample fee agreements. While attorneys are not required to use either form,   …Continue Reading Contingent fee rule changed by SJC

New Homestead Law Effective Today Posted on Mar 16

The new law, St.2010, c.395,  provides some very significant changes to past homestead law, including: Automatically protects up to $125,000 in home equity without filing Protects up to $500,000 for those who file for homestead protection Allows both spouses to file Clarifies that there is   …Continue Reading New Homestead Law Effective Today

New: Law About Gender Identity and Expression Posted on Mar 3

After the recent issuance of two new executive orders on protection for gender identity, we’ve had more questions about transgender issues and rights, so we’ve created a new page: Massachusetts Law About Gender Identity and Expression, which includes state laws, cases, local ordinances, websites and   …Continue Reading New: Law About Gender Identity and Expression

New Statewide Records Retention Schedule Posted on Mar 2

The state’s Records Retention Board issued a new edition of the Statewide Records Retention Schedule in January. We’ve added it to our page on Freedom of Information, and created a new section,  Record Retention Schedules, which brings together requirements for municipal and state governments.

Pending Legislation Re: Craft Brewers Posted on Mar 1

We’ve had some questions about a pending bill to change the legal relationship between craft brewers and wholesalers. The current law is MGL c.138, s.25E. The bill  to amend it, H1897, seeks to define “small brewer relationships” and to carve out different requirements for small   …Continue Reading Pending Legislation Re: Craft Brewers