Issue January 2014

New year, new strategies

For the judges in our court system, 2014 is indeed a happy new year, thanks to their long-awaited judicial pay raise, which goes into effect this year. As members of the Massachusetts Bar Association, we can also take pride in the MBA's longstanding support, which helped push through this well-deserved increase. But we cannot sit on our laurels. Court funding and funding for legal aid remains a critical issue, despite our recent success.

Meet the new chiefs

The Trial Court appointed new chief justices for three of its departments over the last few months: the District Court, Boston Municipal Court and Land Court. While District Court Chief Justice Paul C. Dawley has been at the helm since September 2013, Land Court Chief Justice Judith Chanoux Cutler and BMC Chief Justice Roberto Ronquillo Jr. began their terms this month. As the Trial Court court moves into 2014, Lawyers Journal sat down with the three new chiefs to get a sense of their departments' priorities and what lies ahead for their respective courts.

Blue Ribbon Commission to examine prosecutor, defender pay for first time in 20 years

Massachusetts Bar Association President Douglas K. Sheff appointed a Blue Ribbon Commission on Criminal Justice Compensation last month to examine the impact of low prosecutor and public defender salaries on the state's criminal justice system.

Impact of e-discovery rules, other new laws, lead 2014 predictions

It happens all the time - last year's changes turn into this year's challenges. When new laws get announced, new questions inevitably follow. The same can be said of 2014, if lawyers' predictions hold true.

Lawyers Journal asked many of our section leaders to address the issues they see coming up next for lawyers in year ahead. According to our responses, 2014 may be the year of the "e" - as in e-discovery, the economy and the effects of a number of new rules and regulations.