Lawyers Journal

News from the Courts

First deputy named acting probation commissioner

Chief Justice of the Trial Court Robert A. Mulligan and Court Administrator Harry Spence have appointed Ellen G. Slaney to serve as the acting commissioner of probation on an interim basis until a permanent commissioner is named in the spring. Slaney has served as the first deputy for Acting Commissioner Ronald P. Corbett Jr., who retires this week after a two-year term as acting commissioner during which he initiated management reforms to restore professionalism and effectiveness to the state's probation service.

Slaney was appointed as a probation officer in Roxbury in 1974 and became the assistant chief probation officer there for the Juvenile Court in 1986. She was named chief probation officer for the Wrentham District Court in 1990 and regional supervisor in 1997, prior to her appointment as first deputy commissioner in 2011. Slaney holds a B.A from the University of Connecticut and an M.S. from Simmons College School of Social Work.

Recent management initiatives led by the commissioner's office included introduction of performance management metrics and accountability, a new, validated risk/need classification instrument, merit-based hiring and promotions utilizing best practices and enhanced partnerships with criminal justice agencies.

Last fall, the Trial Court retained Isaacson Miller, a nationally-recognized firm, to lead the search for a new commissioner of probation. Mulligan and Spence expect to make an appointment this spring.

Probate and Family Court announces Internet access to publicly available estate and administration cases

The Probate and Family Court is pleased to announce publicly available estate and administration cases are now accessible via the Internet. Access is secured through eAccess and the website address is www.masscourts.org.

Searches can be done by case number, case name or case type and can be filtered by various means.

Electronic access to all publicly available case types of the Probate and Family Court continues to be available at each of the 14 divisions of the Probate and Family Court and at most Registry of Deeds sites.

NOTE: Only those estate and administration cases that were created in, or converted to, electronic format will be available on the Internet.

Appeals Court Pilot Program continuations

The Supreme Judicial Court has approved continuation of Appeals Court pilot program requiring appellants to file docketing statements in civil cases until Dec. 31, 2015, effective Jan. 1, 2013. The SJC has also approved continuation of Appeals Court pilot program requiring appellants to file docketing statements in criminal cases until Dec. 31, 2015, effective Jan. 1, 2013.

Amendments to SJC Rule 3:12

The SJC has approved changes to Rule 3:12 of the Rules of the Supreme Judicial Court effective Jan. 1, 2013. Visit www.mass.gov/courts/sjc/docs/Rules/Rule-312-amendments.pdf to view the notice of change.

SJC approves Rule 3:16: Practicing with Professionalism Course for New Lawyers

The SJC has approved new Rule 3:16: Practicing with Professionalism Course for New Lawyers of the Rules of the Supreme Judicial Court effective Sept. 1, 2013. Visit www.mass.gov/courts/sjc/docs/rule-316-amended.pdf to view the notice of change.

Amendments to Superior Court Rule 9A (b) (5) (ii) and (iv) and Rule 30B

The SJC has approved changes to Superior Court Rule 9A (b) (5) (ii) and (iv) and new Superior Court Rule 30B on Certification of Expert Disclosures effective Jan. 1, 2013. Visit www.mass.gov/courts/sjc/docs/Rules/rules-9A-30B.pdf to view the notice of change.

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