Public Defense Shortage Resurfaces in Western Mass.
The Sixth Amendment guarantees the right to counsel for criminal defendants who cannot afford to pay for an attorney. But a shortage of lawyers able to represent indigent defendants in Western Massachusetts is again placing a burden on public defenders and the courts. In this episode, host Jordan Rich speaks with Anthony Benedetti, chief counsel of the state Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS), about the factors contributing to this recurring problem, and how an increase in the hourly rate for private bar advocates could be part of the solution.
Celebrating a Decade of Tiered Community Mentoring
The Massachusetts Bar Association’s award-winning Tiered Community Mentoring Program (TCM), based in Boston and Worcester, introduces urban high school students to information about college, provides pre-law college students with information about the law school admission process and gives law students an inside view of the practice of law with their attorney mentors. As this unique mentoring program celebrates its 10th Anniversary, Host Jordan Rich interviews past participants and current administrators about how TCM has helped students build a diverse network and enrich their careers.
Employees and the New Massachusetts Noncompete Law
The new Massachusetts law governing noncompete agreements went into effect in October 2018, bringing a new measure of fairness to the workplace. In this episode, host Jordan Rich interviews attorneys Dahlia C. Rudavsky and Ellen J. Messing of Messing, Rudavsky & Weliky PC, about the protections for employees included in the new law.
Protecting Children's Rights In Massachusetts
Who protects the legal rights of children? In the commonwealth, the non-profit Children’s Law Center of Massachusetts (CLCM) is on the front lines helping kids access the social services and legal assistance they need, from foster care and child welfare to education/special education, immigration and mental health issues. In this episode, Jordan Rich talks with attorney Jessica Berry, the CLCM deputy director, about her organization's advocacy efforts, community-wide trainings and individual legal resources available for juveniles, from birth to age 22.
Meet the 2019 MBA Access to Justice Award Winners
At its Annual Dinner on May 9, the Massachusetts Bar Association will present the 2019 Access to Justice Awards to six attorneys and one law firm, in recognition of their exemplary legal skills and service to the community. In this episode, host Jordan Rich talks with the honorees about the inspiring stories behind their awards. The 2019 Access to Justice Award winners are: Rising Star, Gina Plata-Nino (Worcester); Legal Services Attorney, Luz A. Arévalo (Boston); Pro Bono Law Firm, Sherin and Lodgen LLP (Boston); Pro Bono Publico Attorney, Stephen A. Smith (Norfolk); Defender, Tinia L. Snow (Roxbury); Prosecutor, Adrian Bispham (Boston); and Lifetime Achievement Award, Judith Liben (Boston).
Transparency: The New Normal in Medical Malpractice?
The traditional “deny and defend” attitude to claims of medical malpractice may be changing as doctors and hospitals embrace transparency, disclosure, and even apologies following medical errors. In this episode, host Jordan Rich talks with Boston attorney and patient-safety advocate Jeffrey Catalano of Todd & Weld LLP about how medical transparency in med-mal cases is gaining traction in Massachusetts and elsewhere, as medical professionals work more openly with patients to prevent problems in the future. (February 2019)
New MLAC Leader Talks the Legal Aid ‘Walk’
For attorney Lynne Parker, the 20th Annual Walk to the Hill for Civil Legal Aid on Jan. 24 at the Massachusetts State House will be her first as the new executive director of the Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation (MLAC). But Parker is no stranger to the world of legal aid, having worked more than three decades advocating on behalf of low-income residents, most recently in New Hampshire. In this episode, Parker talks with host Jordan Rich about MLAC’s role as one of the primary funders of civil legal aid organizations in Massachusetts and why funding for legal aid — the drive behind the Walk to the Hill event — is so vital to low-income Massachusetts residents facing life-changing legal challenges. For more information on the Walk to the Hill for Civil Legal Aid, see www.equaljusticecoalition.org.
Lottery Law: Winning is Just the Beginning
If you're fortunate enough to hit the jackpot in Massachusetts, you'll quickly find that winning the lottery is more than just a question of numbers. There are several considerations to think about before you're able to enjoy your winnings. Who claims the prize? Who signs the winning ticket? Should you take a lump sum or installment payments? Should you go public with your good news? In this episode, Nancy Weissman, an attorney whose practice includes representing lottery winners, talks with host Jordan Rich about what to expect if you win the lottery in Massachusetts.
Know Your Rights: Winter Housing Issues
If you're a tenant or a landlord, do you know who is responsible for shoveling or clearing the entrance way in the winter? Who pays for heat and other utilities? Can you be thrown out in the snow? In this episode of the MassBar Beat, host Jordan Rich talks with attorney Michael L. Lonzana, vice chair of the Massachusetts Bar Association's Real Estate Law Section, about some common housing issues that arise in rental situations.
MBA President to Promote Civic Education, Launch Trial Academy
In this episode, host Jordan Rich talks with new Massachusetts Bar Association President Christopher A. Kenney about his goals for the 2018-19 year, including the MBA's role in promoting civics and civic education. Kenney also unveils plans for the MBA Trial Academy, which will train the next generation of trial lawyers and encourage them to provide limited assistance representation (LAR)to unrepresented individuals in court. The MBA's Leadership Academy and the association's work with the courts on lawyer well-being are also discussed.
The Laws of Summer: Beaches, Boats and BBQs
Do you need a license to drive a boat? Can you swim on a private beach? Are you allowed to have a fire pit or serve alcohol at your backyard BBQ? In this episode, host Jordan Rich talks with Boston attorney Samuel A. Segal, chair of the Massachusetts Bar Association's Young Lawyers Division, about the Massachusetts laws governing everyone's favorite summertime activities.
The Language of Law: Massachusetts Resources for Limited-English Speakers
How do you find a lawyer who speaks your language when your English is limited? What happens when you go to court? In this episode, which is also available in Spanish, learn about the resources available to help non-English speakers successfully navigate the courts in Massachusetts. Host Jordan Rich speaks with attorney Melissa A. Juárez about the multilingual resources offered by the Massachusetts Bar Association's Lawyer Referral Service, and the translation services offered by the courts. You'll also learn about some new ideas for increasing access to justice in Massachusetts, including Spanish-language drug courts. (También disponible en Español.)
El lenguaje de la ley: Recursos de Massachusetts para personas de inglés limitado
¿Cómo puede encontrar un abogado que hable su idioma cuando su inglés es limitado? ¿Qué pasa cuando va a la corte? En éste episodio, que también está disponible en Español, conozca los recursos disponibles para ayudar a los que no hablan inglés a tener éxito en los tribunales de Massachusetts. La anfitriona, Iliana Burton, habla con la abogada Melissa A. Juárez sobre los recursos multilingües ofrecidos por el Servicio de Referencia de Abogados de la Asociación de Abogados de Massachusetts, y los servicios de traducción que ofrecen las cortes. También aprenderá sobre algunas ideas nuevas para aumentar el acceso a la justicia en Massachusetts, incluídos Las cortes de drogas en Español. (This podcast is also available in English.)
Criminal Justice Reform: The Latest on the New Law
April 2018 will be remembered as the month when lawmakers introduced the most ambitious reform of Massachusetts’ criminal justice system in decades. Signed into law by Gov. Charlie Baker, the sweeping legislation was the result of a bipartisan compromise between Democrats and Republicans, with additional support from prosecutors, attorneys and advocacy organizations, including the MBA.
ABCs of State Superior Court Rules and Practice in Mass.
The second of a two-part series, attorney Thomas M. Bond, chair of the Massachusetts Bar Association's Judicial Administration Section, talks with host Jordan Rich about appearing as an attorney in state court (Superior Court, in particular) in Massachusetts. You'll learn about the benefits of having your case in state court, get an overview of some of the most important rules, and hear insights on courtroom etiquette. Massachusetts Bar Association members can also access related materials on the topic in the Judicial Administration library on My Bar Access: is.gd/MBA_CourtRules.
ABCs of Federal Court Rules and Practice in Mass.
The first of a two-part series, attorney Thomas M. Bond, chair of the Massachusetts Bar Association's Judicial Administration Section, talks with host Jordan Rich about appearing as an attorney in federal court in Massachusetts. You'll learn about the benefits of having your case in federal court, get an overview of some of the most important rules, and hear insights on courtroom etiquette. Massachusetts Bar Association members can also access related materials on the topic in the Judicial Administration library on My Bar Access: is.gd/MBA_CourtRules.
Understanding Elder Law Basics
Elder law is more than just estate planning. As the population ages and people live longer, many will encounter important legal issues that can affect their home, health and financial well-being. In this episode, host Jordan Rich and attorney Alex L. Moschella, the chair of the Massachusetts Bar Association's Elder Law Advisory Committee, answer some commonly asked questions and discuss the MBA's Elder Law Education Program (www.massbar.org/elderlaw). From wills and trusts to health care proxies, powers of attorney, reverse mortgages and long-term care options, learn which documents and strategies are available to help you take control of your future.
Closing the Justice Gap
Each day people facing life-changing legal issues are going to court alone because they don't qualify for legal aid or cannot afford a lawyer. It's created a justice gap. But there are efforts under way to address these unmet legal needs. Host Jordan Rich talks with attorneys Len Zandrow of UMass School of Law's Justice Bridge Legal Center (www.justice-bridge.org) and Damian Turco of Lawyers for Affordable Justice (www.lawyers4aj.org) about how legal incubators like theirs are working to close the justice gap by pairing newer attorneys, or lawyers committed to representing clients at discount, with modest-means clients.
Different Paths Through Divorce
Ending a marriage is never an easy decision. But for those who have made the choice to divorce, there are several options available to work through the process. Host Jordan Rich talks with attorney Heidi R. Webb of Consilium Divorce Consultations about the lawyer-client relationship, the interplay between law and psychology, and the different paths available, from traditional divorce to mediation, arbitration, conciliation, collaborative law and limited assistance representation.
Get a Handle on Holiday Stress
The holidays can be the most demanding time of year -- especially for those in the legal community. In this episode, host Jordan Rich talks with MBA Law Practice Management Chair Susan Letterman White (Law Office Management Assistance Program) and clinician Barbara Bowe, LICSW (Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers) about suggestions for lawyers and others in the legal community on how to handle holiday stress. This podcast discusses some of the topics covered at the Dec. 12, 2017, Massachusetts Bar Association CLE Program: "Holiday Game Strong -- Tools to Reclaim Joy this Season." www.massbar.org/events/cle-progra…d=6006&view=month
New Trial Court Administrator Advances 'Justice with Dignity and Speed
New Massachusetts Trial Court Administrator Jonathan S. Williams talks with host Jordan Rich about the latest court technology and infrastructure improvements, self-represented litigants, and how he's working with other court leaders and the bar to advance the Trial Court's strategic mission to deliver "justice with dignity and speed."
Celebrating Peacemakers: Conflict Resolution Week
Mediation, Arbitration, Collaborative Law, Ombuds ... what kind of dispute resolution (DR) option is right for you? Guest host Jordan Rich talks with DR professionals Brian Jerome and Michael Zeytoonian about the benefits of DR and about the FREE programs offered throughout Massachusetts during Conflict Resolution Week, Oct. 16-20. Be a #peacemaker and join us.
Ride Along with the New MassBar President
From New York City cab driver to complex civil litigator, attorney Christopher P. Sullivan of Robins Kaplan LLP in Boston brings a variety of life experiences to his new role as president of the Massachusetts Bar Association. In this interview with guest host Jordan Rich, hear about Sullivan's initiatives for the coming year and why he believes attorneys are needed in the community more than ever.
New Massachusetts Child Support Guidelines
The Massachusetts Trial Court issued new Child Support Guidelines for the Massachusetts, which became effective on Sept. 15, 2017. In this episode, Attorney Fern Frolin of Mirick O'Connell, a member of the Trial Court's 2016-2017 Child Support Guidelines Task Force, talks with MassBar Beat host Jordan Rich about some of the major revisions that attorneys and families should be familiar with.
2017 Access to Justice Awards
The Massachusetts Bar Association's Access to Justice Awards honored seven attorneys and one law firm, recognizing their exemplary legal skills and service to the community. Hear the honorees' inspiring stories in their own words. Honorees include Rebecca Jacobstein, Committee for Public Counsel Services (Defender Award); Kevin J. Curtin, Middlesex District Attorney's Office (Prosecutor Award); Andrew Troop, Pillsbury Winthrop (Pro Bono Publico Award); Christopher Mirick, Harvest Power Inc. (Pro Bono Publico Award); Brian Flynn, Greater Boston Legal Services (Legal Services Award); K&L Gates, Boston (Pro Bono Award for Law Firms); Weayonnoh Nelson-Davies, Community Legal Aid (Rising Star Award); and Claire Valentin, Children's Law Center of Massachusetts (Rising Star Award). (May 2017)
'Defamation' Courtroom Drama Encourages Dialogue about Bias
Learn about "Defamation," an interactive courtroom drama that encourages its audience to examine stereotypes and perceptions of bias in the play, the legal system and beyond. Hear from Boston-area high school students and lawyers who watched the play last fall during the Massachusetts Black Lawyers Association's annual presentation of "Defamation." The Massachusetts Bar Association was a sponsor of the MBLA's program, and more recently has begun presenting a series of CLEs on eliminating bias in the legal system. Learn more about "Defamation" at www.defamationtheplay.com. (March 2017)
Homeless Court: A Second Chance at Hope
Homeless Court is a specialty court in Massachusetts that gives homeless individuals with minor infractions a chance to clear their records and get a new start. Leaders from the Massachusetts Bar Association's Young Lawyers Division had an opportunity to visit this "court of second chances" at the Pine Street Inn shelter in Boston. Listen in as they share observations, interviews and stories of hope from the presiding judge, the Pine Street Inn's Homeless Court coordinator, Homeless Court participants and the president of the Massachusetts Bar Association. (January 2017)
Privilege to Practice: All the Small Things
Trial lawyer Richard P. Campbell, one of the co-authors of the Massachusetts Bar Association Lawyers Journal's Privilege to Practice ethics column, relates the tale of a once-prominent attorney's fall from grace as a cautionary reminder about lawyers' ethical obligations to their clients AND their law firm colleagues -- and how you do need to sweat the small stuff. (December 2016)
2016 State of the Judiciary Address Highlights
Listen to excerpts from the 2016 State of the Judiciary Address. This year's installment of this annual event featured remarks from Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Ralph Gants, Trial Court Chief Justice Paula Carey, Trial Court Administrator Harry Spence and MBA President Jeffrey Catalano. (November 2016)
Leadership: All the World's a Stage
MBA President Jeffrey N. Catalano shares a little-known story about his time in the theater, and how it informed his vision of leadership. (October 2016)