Massachusetts Law Updates

Official Blog of the Massachusetts Trial Court Law Libraries

Yearly Archives: 2015

Consumer Protection Against Robocalls Strengthened by FCC Declaratory Ruling Posted on Oct 20

We reported earlier that the FCC had implemented rules under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act. They have recently issued a declaratory ruling (FCC 15-72) that tightens the rules for companies.  Consumers can revoke their consent “in any reasonable way” and companies have a single chance to   …Continue Reading Consumer Protection Against Robocalls Strengthened by FCC Declaratory Ruling

Juvenile Attorney Resources, Adolescent Brains Posted on Oct 19

Juvenile Attorney Resources, Adolescent Brains

We have pulled together a few resources for attorneys working with children in the juvenile justice system on how to stay aware of current developments. Mass General, Center for Law, Brain and Behavior : Their mission reads: “The speed of technology in neuroscience as it   …Continue Reading Juvenile Attorney Resources, Adolescent Brains

Personal Exemptions from Local Property Tax Posted on Oct 16

Cities and towns may give property tax exemptions to some individuals as defined by state law. An exemption discharges the taxpayer from the legal obligation to pay all or part of the tax assessed for the fiscal year. Blind persons, qualifying senior citizens, qualifying surviving   …Continue Reading Personal Exemptions from Local Property Tax

Mass. Land Records Posted on Oct 14

You can find your property records online at the Secretary of the Commonwealths “Massachusetts Land Records” website. Access is available to deeds, mortgages, plans, and other land records recorded in the various Registries of Deeds. “Locate my Registry of Deeds Office” will help you find   …Continue Reading Mass. Land Records

Can a Monkey Own a Copyright? Posted on Oct 13

A self-portrait taken by a black macaque monkey named Naruto on the island of Sulawesi, Indonesia is the focus of a federal lawsuit filed on September 21 by the animal rights group PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals).  Naruto took the self-portrait with the camera of   …Continue Reading Can a Monkey Own a Copyright?

Time to Turn on the Heat? Posted on Oct 8

Time to Turn on the Heat?

This time of year, we get questions about heat.  Workers, tenants and homeowners all have questions. When does the landlord have to provide heat?  Answers are in the State Sanitary Code, 105 CMR 410.201, which reads in part : “The owner shall provide heat in   …Continue Reading Time to Turn on the Heat?

Who Can Perform a Wedding Ceremony? Posted on Oct 2

Who Can Perform a Wedding Ceremony?

Couples can be married either by a member of the clergy, Justice of the Peace, or friend/family member. Want a friend or family member to perform your wedding ceremony? A One Day Marriage Designation is available from the Governor’s Office. Applications are available online. The application   …Continue Reading Who Can Perform a Wedding Ceremony?

Uniform Rules of Impoundment Procedure Posted on Oct 1

Changes to the Uniform Rules of Impoundment Procedure  go into effect today. The extensive changes were approved by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court on April 24, 2015. The Uniform Rules now apply to criminal proceedings. Rule 13, Maintaining Confidentiality of Impounded Material, is new. The Trial Court   …Continue Reading Uniform Rules of Impoundment Procedure

Anatomical Gift or Organ Donation? Posted on Sep 30

“Donating a body to science” is a familiar phrase to almost everyone and many residents of Massachusetts have already designated themselves organ and tissue donors on their driver’s licenses through the Registry of Motor Vehicles. There are technical differences between registration methods for these generous   …Continue Reading Anatomical Gift or Organ Donation?

Student Records Posted on Sep 29

We often get questions regarding student records, and who has access to them.  Can non-custodial parents get access?  What about privacy concerns?  The area is covered by both state and federal laws.  On the Federal level, FERPA or Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act governs.   …Continue Reading Student Records