Judicial Referee and retired Judge, Gary Cassavechia, has imposed a March 21, 2017 deadline for the beneficiaries of the late Geraldine Webber to reach a settlement in a legal malpractice suit with Webber’s former attorney, Gary Holmes. Continue reading
The Massachusetts Court of Appeals recently upheld a lower court’s decision, dismissing a legal malpractice action on summary judgment, because the statute of limitation had expired on the claim. In Graora v Fletcher Tilton and Whipple, an individual, who was injured in a motor vehicle accident, hired a law firm to represent him in a personal injury action against the other driver.
The Supreme Judicial Court has recently disbarred a Boston, Massachusetts. In the matter of Kirk Y. Griffin, an attorney admitted to using client funds for personal expenses over a period of eight years. After learning of the attorney’s conduct, the Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers (“BBO”) initiated an investigation and then filed a petition for discipline against the attorney.
The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (“Massachusetts SJC”) has affirmed an order transferring an attorney to inactive status for a period of one year, following a determination by the Maine Supreme Judicial Court (“Maine SJC”) that the attorney was unfit to practice law. In the matter of Suzanne T. Dwyer-Jones, the Maine Board of Bar Overseers (“Maine BBO”) alleged that an attorney had substantial mental health and substance abuse problems. Continue reading
The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (“SJC”), located in Boston, has suspended an attorney from practicing law after he was convicted of multiple criminal charges. In the matter of Jason K. Betts, an attorney admitted to sufficient facts for a finding of guilty on charges of resisting arrest, violating the conditions of his probation, disturbing the peace, driving under the influence, and negligent operation of a motor vehicle. Continue reading
The Supreme Judicial Court (“SJC”) in Boston has suspended an attorney from practicing law, following an investigation by the Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers (“BBO”). In the matter of Lisa Beth Wilkins Baker, an attorney neglected her duties as a guardian ad litem in two client matters, and failed to cooperate with counsel for the BBO during disciplinary proceedings. Continue reading
The Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers (“BBO”) has issued an admonition against an attorney for failing to competently handle a legal matter, failing to seek his client’s lawful objectives, and failing to adequately communicate with his client. In Admonition No. 14-03, the attorney was hired to bring a wrongful termination suit on behalf of a municipal employee, who was terminated as the result of the terms of his union agreement, which favored employees with seniority.
The Massachusetts Court of Appeals, located in Boston, has affirmed a judgment dismissing a legal malpractice claim against a Massachusetts attorney. In Resnick v Baker, a client hired an attorney to represent him in a property dispute. The attorney obtained a favorable result for the client, but failed to timely file a motion seeking payment of the client’s attorney’s fees. The judge granted the opposition’s motion to strike the request for fees.
The Massachusetts Court of Appeals, located in Boston, affirmed summary judgment in favor of an attorney in a legal malpractice case. In Scanlon v. Dukess, a real estate investor sold a property in Brockton, Massachusetts and sought to purchase a replacement property in order to defer capital gains tax on the sale, which is permitted by federal statute 26 U.S.C. § 1031 and is known as a ‘1031 exchange’.
Under that statute, the investor had to identify to the IRS possible replacements within 45 days of the sale of the Brockton property and then complete the purchase within 180 days. The investor listed three properties, but only one in Taunton, which was leased by a drugstore, qualified for a 1031 exchange.
After the 45 days had passed, the investor consulted his long time attorney about the purchase of the Taunton property. The attorney advised him that he would have to assume the existing lease, but failed to inform him that the lease did not contain a condemnation clause, which would prevent the drugstore from sharing in the proceeds of an eminent domain taking. The investor purchased the property on the final day of the 180 day period.