Court and Community News

Thursday, Dec. 19, 2019
District Court seeks comments on proposed videoconferencing standing order; Land Court amends Standing Order 2-18


District Court seeks comments on proposed videoconferencing standing order  

The chief justice of the District Court invites comments on the proposed Standing Order on Videoconferencing in the District Court. This proposed order requires the use of videoconferencing for certain court events where a party is in custody, subject to an individual judge’s discretion.

The proposed standing order further implements the Massachusetts Trial Court Revised Policy for Videoconferencing issued in November 2019. The revised policy anticipates that whenever videoconferencing is used for a court event because the person is in custody, the person in custody will be provided a reasonable and adequate opportunity to privately consult with counsel, most commonly immediately prior to the videoconferencing event.

The designation of specific types of court events as appropriate for videoconferencing is no longer contained in the Trial Court policy, and instead departmental chief justices may identify by standing order court events, common to the jurisdiction of that department, as appropriate for videoconference. The District Court is the first Trial Court department to propose such a standing order.

The chief justice welcomes all comments pertaining to the issues raised and will determine whether to approve or amend the proposed standing order after reviewing the comments submitted.

Comments should be directed to Chief Justice Paul C. Dawley, c/o Sarah Adamson at, or Administrative Office of the District Court, Edward W. Brooke Courthouse, 24 New Chardon St., Boston, MA 02114, on or before Jan. 6, 2020.


Land Court amends Standing Order 2-18 

The Land Court has amended Land Court Standing Order 2-18: Initial Limited Electronic Filing Project, effective Dec. 16, 2019. The amendment makes minor updates to Standing Order 2-18 to reflect the expansion and extension of the e-filing pilot in servicemembers cases.