Author Archives: George Bourguignon
Do I have a claim for defamation if a newspaper reported an event inaccurately that hurt my reputation?
7 January 2019 Answer: Maybe, as it depends on just how inaccurate and how different from the truth the false statement was. In Butcher v. University of Massachusetts, the plaintiff was allegedly falsely accused of taking pictures of young women without their knowledge on a shuttle bus operated by a college with the implication they […]
Do I have an obligation to keep records that are related to the civil court case I am a party to even if they are my exclusive property?
3 January 2019 Answer: Yes, and there are ramifications for not maintaining such records. In Grieco v. Williams, a Massachusetts case litigated in the Business Litigation Session of the Superior Court, the defendant learned that there are ramifications for not maintaining relevant records. Docket Nos. 1884 CV 03064 and 1884 CV 03065, Dec. 17, 2018. […]
27 September 2018 Answer: Yes, and serious ones. Some people stick their head in the sand and do not open their mail regularly or are selective in what mail they open. These are not wise practices. Some may think these practices are safe or even better for them. They may believe the idea that if […]
Can my bankruptcy lawyer represent my family member that is being sued by the chapter 7 trustee for a fraudulent transfer in my bankruptcy case?
1 December 2017 Answer: No, because the attorney cannot simultaneously perform his duty to you, the debtor, and his duty to the family member and it appears to be a conflict of interest under Rule 1.7 of the Massachusetts Rules of Professional Conduct. Clients very often do not recognize or appreciate (or care) about their […]
If someone seeks a harassment protection order against me under Mass. Gen. Laws c. 258E and I lose, can they take my guns or my gun license?
28 October 2017 Answer: No, because that statute does not include that type of relief to be granted to a petitioner. But there are many reasons not to let your guard down because there are other threats to your gun rights to be prepared for that could be based on the same facts. In a […]
26 October 2017 Answer: Try and work it out with your neighbor, but if you have to, you can prune the offending branch or root back to the property line under Massachusetts law. Some rules never change, at least they haven’t yet. This one is known as the “Massachusetts Rule” and goes way, way back. […]
25 October 2017 Answer: Try and work it out, and if necessary, replace your attorney (only), but do not speak out to third parties about your dissatisfaction. It is more common than it should be for a client to be unhappy with his lawyer. It is hardly ever a joyful task to address the issue. […]
19 October 2017 Answer: Maybe, but if the foreclosure sale occurred during the Great Recession time period, unless you have already sued, you are probably too late. During the Great Recession there were many foreclosures, as we all know. Some of these foreclosures in Massachusetts were done by companies that did not have a proper […]
A harassment protection order was brought against me and it was denied because the petitioning accuser was lying, can I get the record of it expunged?
26 March 2017 Answer: Maybe, but it is unlikely due to the standard that must be met. It is a common occurrence; a harassment protection order is issued ex parte (without notice or the presence of the opposing side) and the defendant is served with it. The required hearing is scheduled in 10 days from […]
I am pro se in a civil action in Massachusetts and the other side has sent me Interrogatories, do I have to answer them?
12 February 2017 Answer: If you want to have avoid possibly losing your case you have to answer and/or object properly. Knowledge of the basics of the rules of civil procedure is necessary to either defending or pursuing a civil case. One basic idea is to understand that for almost all cases not filed in […]