Lawyers Journal

Lawyers Journal

Child-support rules require comprehensive review

Special to Lawyers Journal
Joining a sizable, vocal segment of lawyers, clients and concerned citizens, the Massachusetts Bar Association has issued reports stating that the state's current child-support guidelines produce inequitable child-support orders frequently enough to require a comprehensive review of those guidelines.

We feel there's inequity occurring on both sides (payers and receivers of support)," said Walpole attorney Marilynne R. Ryan, chairwoman of the MBA Child Support Guideline Committee that, on three occasions since September, has encouraged Barbara A. Dortch-Okara, Massachusetts Trial Court chief justice for administration and management (CJAM), to undertake a careful and comprehensive review of what it considers a seriously flawed system. Dortch-Okara was to have completed her review of all formal recommendations by Dec. 31.

'I think we're raising the awareness of problems in the system," Ryan said. 'I think it's easy to say that we're talking about the state's child-support guidelines, so they must be fair, but that's not always the case."

A different kind of McCarthy era

As is so typical of folks who give everything of themselves, it's darn near impossible to get Vin McCarthy to sing his own praises. Fact is, once it's clear just how voluminous the Hale and Dorr senior partner's pro bono portfolio is, it's tough to figure how he has time to even accept unrelated calls.

Annual Conference is a chance to stay current with the law and colleagues

The MBA 2002 Annual Conference: "A Celebration of Law and Justice" - Jan. 24-26 at the Boston Marriott Copley Place - is an opportunity to see old acquaintances and make new ones while catching up on the latest legal developments, sharpening legal skills and learning about new technologies that can improve your practice.

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