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Phillips, Gerstein & Channen Legal Blog

Massachusetts Divorce And Accurate Financial Statements

There are many reasons why couples or sometimes just one spouse decides that the marriage is over and files for divorce. Certainly money or the lack thereof is often THE contributing factor to marital discord.

Finances play a big part in any divorce. In Massachusetts, once divorce papers are filed by both spouses or just one against the other, a Financial Statement will be required. Each party under the pains and penalties of perjury must complete and make full financial disclosure to the other spouse and to the Court. Many times the financial statement is the primary basis for judges … Read More »



How the New Recreational Marijuana Law effect Employer’s Policies

On November 8, 2016, Massachusetts voted in favor of legalizing the possession and use of marijuana for recreational purposes, joining a growing number of states that have passed similar laws. This means that most employers will have to address employee use of marijuana in the workplace.

Under the new law, an individual who is 21 or older may possess for personal use up to 1 ounce of marijuana in public, and up to 10 ounces at home. The law also allows the possession for personal use of up to 6 marijuana plants per person, with a limit of 12 marijuana … Read More »



Divorce and The Best Interests of the Child

When you’re going through the divorce process and managing the child support and custody issues, you’ll hear the term “best interests of the child.” Generally, the court will consider the new family lifestyle after a divorce and where the court feels the child will best be able to adapt to the new changes. It is possible for you and your spouse to ease into your new family dynamic in order to make the transition easier on your child.

Amicable Relationship In order for you and your spouse to best help your child through the divorce process, they should maintain an … Read More »



Divorced spouses may be entitled to a bigger Social Security Check

Did you know that as a divorced spouse you may be entitled to collect both spousal (your ex is living) benefits and survivor (your ex is deceased) retirement benefits on your ex-partner’s employment record. This is true regardless of whether your ex has remarried. This can be especially beneficial if you were the lower earning spouse because you may be able to receive a larger Social Security Benefit based on your ex-spouse’s work record than you can on your own.

To qualify for either spousal or survivor Social Security benefits as an e-spouse, the following criteria must be met:

The … Read More »



Massachusetts Receivership

Pursuant to General Laws, Chapter 111§127I, the Attorney General’s Office or the Town/City Solicitor is empowered to bring a Petition for Receivership to appoint a Receiver to correct safety and sanitary code violations when the owner has failed, after notice, to maintain the Property.

Once sparingly utilized, this statute has become extremely helpful throughout Massachusetts, and especially in the Merrimack Valley, to address rundown and/or vacant properties.

Drive around any City and you will see numerous properties where the Owners either fail to maintain their home, have abandoned it or the Bank, having foreclosed on the property, loses interest.

A … Read More »



Massachusetts to Approve Limits on Non-Compete Agreements

Massachusetts is seeking to approve a bill that would impose strict new limits on non-compete agreements. This would be especially appealing to start-ups and skilled tech workers. The attorneys at Phillips, Gerstein & Channen are informed and in tune with the proposed law and its applicability to existing businesses and employees who may have signed non-competes as part of their continued employment. Employees and employers will need to know about continued payments of “garden leave” during any non-compete period, should the bill pass. We stand ready to assist and advise. We encourage you to contact us with any questions you … Read More »



Your Happily Ever After is not so happy. What do you need to do to plan for Divorce?

When you think about your wedding day, many of us remember the planning it took to make the day perfect. For some, the marriage has not been so perfect and perhaps you and your spouse are contemplating divorce. Just like any event, to be successful you need to plan for the event. Divorce is no different. Absent an emergency (domestic violence, substance abuse, safety concerns etc.) the steps you should take before you see us for a consultation about a divorce are:

Gather important documents:

Obtain a certified copy of your marriage certificate from the town or city you … Read More »



Massachusetts Car Accident Expenses – Who Pays For What

You’ve been in a serious car accident along the busy roads of the Merrimack Valley region. The damage to your vehicle is great, but that doesn’t measure to the pain you’ve suffered from your injuries. Not only is your car totaled, but you’re about to receive numerous medical bills for thousands of dollars. Who pays for what?

• Medical Bills The state of Massachusetts follows the “no fault” system. When injury occurs from a car accident, automobile insurance will pay up to $2,000 of the medical bills. After that $2,000, either your healthcare coverage, or P.I.P.(Personal Injury Protection) if you … Read More »



Massachusetts Adverse Possession Real Estate Law

Under the Massachusetts Adverse Possession Real Estate Laws, a person may claim that land under title to another now belongs to him or her. If this sounds like something you might like to do; know that the path ahead is not easy. Cook v Babcock, 65 Mass. 206 (1853) determined that a person claiming adverse possession must prove “an actual, open, exclusive, and adverse possession of the land”. And, it’s an all or none deal.

These are the five components essential for alleged adverse possession in Massachusetts: 1. You are the only possessor of the parcel, you were physically present … Read More »



Overview of the new Massachusetts Sick Leave Law

Massachusetts has recently enacted a new Sick Leave Law that requires compliance by Employers and understanding by Employees. It does not only apply to full time employees, but also applies to part time, seasonal and temporary employees.

The Earned Sick Time Law requires Employers to provide all Employees one (1) hour of sick time for every thirty (30) hours worked, up to a maximum of forty (40) hours per year. Employers with 11 or more employees must provide paid sick time while those with fewer than 11 employees must provide unpaid sick time

Unused sick time can be carried … Read More »



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Haverhill, MA 01830

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