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Top: MBA President Douglas K. Sheff (left) presents a check to scholarship winner Elizabeth McIntyre, along with Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly Publisher Susan Bocamazo

Bottom (from left): MBA Secretary Christopher A. Kenney, MBA President Douglas K. Sheff, scholarship winner Elizabeth McIntyre, Christine McIntyre, Matthew McIntyre and MBA Vice President Christopher P. Sullivan

Photos by Jason Scally

MBA presents scholarship at Top Women of Law event

The Massachusetts Bar Association and the MBA Insurance Agency sponsored Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly's first-ever Leadership Scholarship, which was given out during this year's Top Women of Law luncheon. During the Oct. 31 event at the Boston Park Plaza, MBA President Douglas K. Sheff presented a check for $3,000 to Elizabeth McIntyre, an outstanding third-year student at Boston University School of Law who has embraced public interest work.

McIntyre has served on the executive board of the Public Interest Project and volunteered with a range of service organizations, including the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Michigan Legal Services Foreclosure Project and Greater Boston Legal Services.

In her application for this scholarship, McIntyre said, "[T]he world can change. And if you recognize that the world can change, you must likewise recognize that every time the world has changed, it has done so because someone, somewhere, thought it could. That someone was joined by another someone, and another, and another. Together, they made the world a little more equal, a little more free, a little more just. There is no reason I, and we, cannot do the same."

In addition to Sheff, other MBA officers on hand to support McIntyre and the other Top Women of Law honorees included Treasurer Robert W. Harnais, Vice President Christopher P. Sullivan and Secretary Christopher A. Kenney.

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From top to bottom:

Chief Justice of the Probate and Family Court Angela M. Ordoñez speaks to 2013 MBA Family Law Conference attendees

From left: MBA President Douglas K. Sheff with Family Law Conference Co-Chairs Jennifer R. Clapp and Michael I. Flores

From left: Susan A. Huettner, MBA President-elect Marsha V. Kazarosian, Probate and Family Court Associate Justice Arthur C. Ryley and Patricia A. O'Connell

From left: Probate and Family Court First Justice Robert A. Scandurra, Probate and Family Court Associate Justice David G. Sacks, Probate and Family Court Associate Justice Katherine A. Field, Denise Marie Fitzgerald

From left: Family Law Conference Co-Chair Michael I. Flores, David Sun, Probate and Family Court First Justice Randy J. Kaplan, Paul M. Kane, Timothy J. Conlon

Photos by John Pregmon

23rd Annual Family Law Conference draws crowd

The 23rd Annual Family Law Conference took place on Nov. 1 and Nov. 2, at the Chatham Bars Inn. This year's conference was co-chaired by Family Law Section Chair Michael I. Flores and Vice Chair Jennifer R. Clapp, and was attended by over 200 family law practitioners and judges. The conference featured a number of excellent panelists and the inaugural address on the state of the court by Probate and Family Court Chief Justice Angela M. Ordoñez.

On Nov. 1, Flores welcomed attendees to the conference and introduced the first group of panelists, who discussed e-discovery issues. Panelist Timothy J. Conlon noted the "new net" is more cloud-based and technological advances lead to a tremendous amount of data that can be retrieved by either party in litigation. Tips for acquiring this information and effective client communication were provided. David Sun presented appropriate ways to select technological experts, and the differences between them, noting that if one's "case is a car wreck, [you] find a mechanic to put it back together -- that's the type of expert you want to retrieve electronic information: the 'computer forensic.'" Other session highlights included a discussion of social media surveillance, forensic collection, chain of custody and privacy concerns.

Maureen C. McBrien began the second session by discussing the implications of the new alimony and child support statutes and updates to the law. The discussion included common household and co-habitation language as well as types of relief that can be obtained. Additionally, Judge James V. Menno cautioned attendees on their use of the "percentage of parenting time" when conducting a child support proceeding.

The first day of the conference concluded with a welcome reception at The Beach House Grill on the edge of Aunt Lydia's Cove.

Ordoñez started day two of the family law conference with the traditional "State of the Probate and Family Court." address. Ordoñez thanked conference attendees for the countless number of volunteer hours family law practitioners give saying, "there is no greater group who give back to the bar. Thank you."

"I feel fortunate to be Chief Justice at this point in time," said Ordoñez. "I have one mission: justice with dignity and speed."

Ordoñez's four goals for the court are to reduce delays, use technology to enhance access to the court, increase uniformity of process, and fathers' engagement in children's lives. She concluded her address by reminding participants to show civility and courtesy to one another, as there is no room for incivility when helping families.

An engaging panel discussion on inheritance and trust issues followed Ordoñez's keynote address and was moderated by Susan Huettner. Joining Huettner was MBA President-elect Marsha V. Kazarosian, Patricia O'Connell, and Judge Arthur C. Ryley. The panel reviewed the importance of dividing and identifying assets and factors in distributing those assets fairly and reasonably.

"Work with your brother or sister counsel to get a statement of undisputed facts in order to determine what trusts and what money went where," said Ryley. "This is helpful to the court and beneficial to both parties."

The day concluded with a nuts and bolts presentation on how to write effective findings. Joined by Judge Robert A. Scandurra, Judge David G. Sacks and Judge Katherine A. Field, Denise Fitzgerald lead a substantive discussion on the kind of information practitioners should provide judges to help them make determinations regarding alimony, child support and the value of the marital estate.

Click here to view photos from the 2013 Family Law Conference.

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News from the courts

Land Court LAR training, Amendments to Rule 43 of the Massachusetts Rules of Criminal Procedure


Land Court LAR training

In January 2013, the Land Court announced the issuance of Standing Order 1-12, Limited Assistance Representation (LAR). LAR is the unbundling of legal services and offers litigants the option of hiring an LAR qualified attorney for specific, limited case events as agreed between the attorney and client, instead of the standard full representation on an entire case. With LAR, litigants can engage an attorney for part of the case -- a crucial event, like the case management conference or a motion to dismiss -- and thereby receive the benefits of legal representation that otherwise may be cost prohibitive.

To appear as an LAR attorney, the attorney must be qualified by completing an approved and important training program. The court has been working with the Massachusetts Bar Association to create LAR training tailored to Land Court practice. Look for information about an upcoming training, featuring the Hon. Robert B. Foster, on www.massbar.org.

Click here for a PDF notice of limited appearance. Click here for a PDF notice of withdrawal of limited appearance.


Amendments to Rule 43 of the Massachusetts Rules of Criminal Procedure

The Supreme Judicial Court has approved amendments to Rule 43 of the Massachusetts Rules of Criminal Procedure, effective Jan. 1, 2014.

Click here to view the notice of change. Click here to view the reporter's notes.



Register for upcoming MBA conferences

First Annual Probate Law Conference (Nov. 15); In-House Counsel Summit (Dec. 6)


2013 Probate Law Conference

Join fellow probate judges and practitioners for the MBA's First Annual Probate Law Conference on Friday, Nov. 15, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., at Lombardo's, 6 Billings St., Randolph. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. With concurrent programming tracks addressing the needs of all practice levels, there is something for everyone. Specific topics include MUPC informal probates, trust accounting and administration, equity actions and trust litigation, basic estate planning and more.

MBA member paralegals, law students, recent admittees: $40; MBA members: $75; and nonmembers: $150.

For conference details, list of faculty and to register, call Member Services at (617) 338-0530 or click here.


2013 In-House Summit

The MBA is presenting its 11th Annual In-House Counsel Conference on Friday, Dec. 6, from 9:15 a.m. to 1 p.m., at the MBA, 20 West St., Boston. The theme for this year's conference is "Hot Topics for In-House Counsel." The conference will include speakers on a variety of topics of current interest to in-house counsel. Noteworthy speakers will include the Hon. Timothy S. Hillman, U. S. District Court, District of Massachusetts. Edward Seksay, general counsel to Rockland Trust Company, will deliver the opening remarks, where he will address the challenges faced by in-house counsel.

Part of the In-House Counsel Summit, the conference will be preceded by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly's Business and Law Breakfast, sponsored by Yurko, Salvesen & Remz, from 7:30 to 9 a.m.

MBA member paralegals, law students, recent admittees: $40; MBA members: $80; and nonmembers: $160.

For conference details, list of faculty and to register, call Member Services at (617) 338-0530 or click here.


Unable to come to Boston? This conference is available as a real-time webcast. When registering, participants can choose to attend virtually from a home or office computer. If you choose to attend the conference via real-time webcast, space is limited. Registrants will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis.

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MBA hosts Cradles to Crayons' Gear Up For Winter collection

This holiday season, the Massachusetts Bar Association is partnering with Cradles to Crayons to collect new and like-new children's items, especially warm winter gear. Your donations of quality children's items will help support Cradles to Crayons' Gear Up for Winter program, which provides essential items to children living in homeless or low-income situations.

Donations will be accepted from Monday, Nov. 4, through Monday, Dec. 16, at the MBA's Boston and Springfield locations. Click here for donation guidelines. Other drop-off locations:

  • Marcotte Law Firm, 45 Merrimack St., Lowell
  • Gillis, Borchardt & Barthel LLP, 160 Old Derby St., Suite 227, Hingham

The MBA thanks the Young Lawyers Division for its contributions to the "Gear Up for Winter" collection.



Always return the call

One of the most complained about ethics violation to the Board of Bar Overseers (BBO) has to do with lawyers not returning phone calls to their clients. We all know we should return our client's phone calls (ideally within a few hours), but if the only reason why you're returning phone calls to your clients is your fear of a BBO complaint, you need to examine some of your priorities.

We live in a culture of instant gratification. We want what we want and we want it now. We get upset when our smartphone signal goes from LTE to 3G, because it slows down our web browser by a minute. We get upset when our apps don't download quickly because we must have that update to Candy Crush. Believe it or not, our clients are the same way. When they call an attorney's office to set up a consultation or to follow up on their case, they expect to speak with the attorney right away or at least within a reasonable period of time.

I tell my clients from the start that I will always respond to their phone calls within 24 hours. Reality is, I will usually respond to their phone call within an hour, unless I am in court and I am not at my desk. Setting the expectation for your clients is important, because they know they will be heard and that you value their time.

Other than clients, you should always respond in a timely fashion also to other people who call your office. It does not matter if it is opposing counsel, other attorneys asking for advice, a mentee, your forensic accountant, etc. All of those people are potential referral sources for your firm and can bring you business. So why would you ignore them?

There have been countless times when I have referred business to opposing counsel from previous cases. I will refer out business to those attorneys who always return my phone calls or e-mails and who, even though they were on the other side, treated me with respect. Everyone is a potential business referral source.

Tip courtesy of Gabriel Cheong, Infinity Law Group in Quincy, MA. Follow on twitter @GabrielCheong or visit www.infinitylawgroup.com.

Published July 11, 2013


To learn more about the Law Practice Management Section, which is complimentary for all MBA members, contact LPM Section Chair Cynthia E. MacCausland or Vice Chair Damian J. Turco.
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Why 'iBelong': The MBA is an indispensable part of my professional identity

Damian Turco is proud to be a part of the MBA community, which has given him more than contacts and credibility.

Engaging conferences. Inspiring pro bono work. Welcoming networking events. You belong here, at the Massachusetts Bar Association.

Tell us why YOU belong. E-mail us at ibelong to share your story.

The MBA offers the legal community a wide array of professional development and volunteer opportunities. See why others belong.

iBelong Turco

NOTE: All testimonials shared by e-mail, mail and phone may be published in various MBA publications, posted on the MBA web site and its social media platforms, printed on marketing materials and used in advertising or for other related endeavors.

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Join the conversation to keep up to date on the
latest iBelong news and offers:

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My Bar Access this week

Disclosures, mobile health apps and more.

Interact with your section/division on My Bar Access. Visit http://access.massbar.org/ today to join the conversation. Posts include:


Questions about a new rule? Need a referral? Looking for a sample motion? Interested in learning more about your fellow members? Log in and participate in ongoing member group discussions, which are now PRIVATE and can only be viewed by MBA members who log in to the MBA's online community. My Bar Access discussions allow you to enjoy the benefits of a traditional listserv, without clogging your inbox.

Follow these simple steps to instantly connect with your fellow members:

  1. Log in and agree to terms: Sign in using your MBA user name and password, and sign the Code of Conduct.
  2. Create your profile and settings: Include your bio and photo, and customize the frequency and format of your notifications (your profile info from LinkedIn may be pulled over).
  3. Start connecting: Post blogs, discussions (listservs) or upload a resource library entry for your section(s).

Resource materials posted in various areas throughout the site -- including "Getting Started on My Bar Access" and "How to Use My Bar Access" -- can help users with questions. Members who need further help should contact the My Bar Access Help Desk at [e-mail mybaraccess].

Get started today on http://access.massbar.org.
Questions? [e-mail mybaraccess].


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Featured member benefit: MBA Mentoring Circles

Join a one-of-a-kind mentoring program that allows you to be both the mentor and mentee

MBA Mentoring Circles offers a unique spin on conventional mentoring by combining varying professional levels together and providing all members, senior and junior level, with the resources they need to develop and improve their management and leadership skills and grow within their profession.

While offering guidance, advice and valuable insights to one another, members of our mentoring circles provide support and encouragement in a confidential setting, allowing both the mentor and the mentee to walk away with important lifelong connections.

Not in a circle? Register online at www.massbar.org/mentorcircles. Join today and participate in this unique mentoring program.

Notable & Quotable: MBA members in the media

Notable & Quotable


Whistleblower, Dodd-Frank


Notable Kazarosian"Dodd-Frank anti-retaliation protections should not be reserved "only for people who march right up to the SEC. … That chills anyone from ever talking to their supervisors and letting them do some kind of internal remedy first."

MBA President-elect Marsha V. Kazarosian, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, Oct. 31

Kazarosian was quoted in Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly after receiving a favorable ruling in federal court for the plaintiff, who claimed his termination by his former employer was in violation of the whistleblower provisions under the Dodd-Frank Act. U.S. District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns denied the defendants' motion for judgment on the pleadings, finding that employees can still bring a private lawsuit for retaliation under Dodd-Frank, even when they register complaints internally, but do not take whistleblower claims to the SEC before being terminated by their employers.


Settlement after drunk-driving death


Healy for Notable"Both parties have a lot to gamble by
going in front of a jury."

MBA Chief Legal Counsel and Chief Operating Officer Martin W. Healy, Boston Globe, Nov. 4

Just before the trial was about to start, the Kraft Group, owners of Gillette Stadium, reached an undisclosed settlement with the parents of a woman killed in a drunk-driving accident after a concert at the stadium. Healy's commentary in the Globe helped frame the issue generally of why some litigants opt to settle their cases rather than proceed with a full trial.




Upcoming CLE seminar and program schedule

CLE Heading

To register for the following programs, call MBA Member Services at (617) 338-0530, [e-mail membership] or visit the CLE website. Scroll down for program details, including dates and registration details.

Recorded program Recorded session available for purchase after live program through MBA On Demand.

Live program Real-time webcast available for purchase through MBA On Demand.


How to Conduct an Open Meeting Law Training
Wednesday, Nov. 13, 9-11 a.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

EB5 Nuts and Bolts: The Basics of the Investment Visa Program
Thursday, Nov. 14, 3:30-5 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

First Annual Probate Law Conference
Friday, Nov. 15, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
Lombardo's, 6 Billings St., Randolph

12th Annual Western Massachusetts Bankruptcy Conference
Tuesday, Dec. 3, 4-7 p.m.
Western New England University School of Law, 1215 Wilbraham Road, Springfield

In-House Counsel Summit Live program
Featuring the 11th Annual In-House Counsel Conference

Friday, Dec. 6, 9:15 a.m.-1 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

Hot Topics in Healthcare Live program
Tuesday, Dec. 10, 4-6 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston


MBA On Demand

Were you unable to attend October seminars? Practitioners who were not able to attend MBA CLE programs in October can view select programs on MBA On Demand. MBA On Demand is an innovative MBA member benefit that offers you the opportunity to watch an MBA program from the comfort of your home, office or mobile device at a time that suits your schedule.

October CLE programming now available:

To view a listing of current programs offered on MBA On Demand, click here.

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Section News: Upcoming meetings and special section events

Health Law, Family Law section council meetings (Nov. 12), Immigration Law Section Council meeting (Nov. 13)


Health Law Section Council meeting

Tuesday, Nov. 12, 5:15-6:45 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Health Law Section Council is scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 12, from 5:15 to 6:45 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

To R.S.V.P., click here.


Family Law Section Council meeting

Tuesday, Nov. 12, 5:30-7 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Family Law Section Council is scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 12, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

To R.S.V.P., click here.


Immigration Law Section Council meeting

Wednesday, Nov. 13, 4:30-6 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Immigration Law Section Council is scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 13, from 4:30 to 6 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

To R.S.V.P., click here.


For more information on upcoming monthly MBA section council meetings, click here to view the MBA's Events Calendar.



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