Lawyers Journal

Lawyers Journal

MBA criticizes DOJ move to monitor attorney-client communications

The Massachusetts Bar Association recently submitted comments to the U.S. Department of Justice criticizing changes allowing the Bureau of Prisons to monitor communication between attorneys and inmates or detainees with suspected terrorist ties.Click here to view comments or click below for more of this story.

The DOJ submitted changes to its rules on Oct. 31 to aid law enforcement investigations of terrorist activities following the Sept. 11 attacks. The changes were made effective on Oct. 30, with written comments due by Dec. 31.

"The immediate implementation of this interim rule without public comment is necessary to ensure that the department is able to respond to current intelligence and law enforcement concerns relating to threats to the national security, or risks of terrorism, or violent crimes that may arise through the ability of particular inmates to communicate with other persons," said a Department of Justice statement.

At a special meeting on Nov. 26, the House of Delegates voted on the comments prepared by the MBA Presidential Task Force on the Preservation of Rights, Liberties and Access to Justice. The task force will review all legislation, executive orders and administrative regulations issued or passed in connection with the Sept. 11 tragedy to determine whether rights, liberties or access to justice are impacted.

SJC completes first judicial performance evaluation

Sixty-four Bristol and Plymouth county court judges received performance evaluations from 1,283 lawyers and court employees in the Supreme Judicial Court's first system-wide Judicial Performance Evaluation pilot project launched last May. A third of those who received questionnaires responded.

MBA questions fairness of Sept. 11 victim fund rules

At a special meeting last month, the MBA House of Delegates voted to submit comments on the federal September 11 th Victims Compensation Fund of 2001, saying it is concerned that, because participants will waive their rights to file any other action related to the Sept. 11 terrorist tragedies, the government must ensure that all claims are handled fairly and in a manner consistent with traditional tort damage principles. Click here to view the comments or click below for more of this story.

MBA selects six for judicial appointment committee

At its Nov. 15 meeting, the Massachusetts House of Delegates voted to:
• approve the following appointments to the Joint Bar Committee on Judicial Appointments:
Richard Van Nostrand of the MBA, Diane Tillotson of the Mass. Conveyancers Association, David DeLuca of Norfolk County Bar Association,

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