News, Events & Publications

Free Immigration Relief Screening Clinic, This Saturday, May 30

If you or someone you know is seeking immigration relief from the new policies expanding DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) and creating DAPA (Deferred Action for Parents of Americans), let them know about a free screening clinic this upcoming Saturday, May 30 from 10 am – 4 pm.  The immigration clinic will be held at the Mario Umana Academy, located at 312 Border St, Boston, MA 02128.  The screening sessions are by appointment only. Call 617-635-4141 as soon as possible to schedule  an appointment.

At the clinic, attendees will be able to see if they are eligible for relief under DAPA or DACA, and will be assisted in preparing documents to apply for work permits and protection from deportation when the applications become available.

For more details in English, Cape Verdean Creole, Chinese, Spanish, and Portuguese, please click here.

For more information about DACA or DAPA click HERE.

Restraining Order Forms Available in Multiple Languages

In April, the Massachusetts Trial Court announced that the instructions and paperwork for filing an Abuse Prevention Order (Restraining Order) are now available in eight different languages in addition to English. The languages are Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Haitian Creole, Khmer, Portuguese, Russian, and Vietnamese. These, and other translated forms are available on the Trial Court’s online Language Access Portal online here: www.mass.gov/courts/language-access.

 

Filing for a restraining order can be difficult, especially if those involved do not speak English fluently. Remember, you have a right to an interpreter, free of charge, for all court events. If you require an interpreter, tell the court staff.

If you are looking to hire an attorney either to file or to defend a restraining order, please contact us by phone 617-742-0625 or through our online request form.

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BBA LRS Attends Victim Rights Conference

Last Friday, Boston Bar Association staff attended the 2015 Victim Rights Conference in honor of Victim Rights Month in Massachusetts.  This annual conference brings together individuals and agencies that promote victim rights and services, and is hosted by the Massachusetts Office for Victim Assistance (MOVA).

One of MOVA’s most important functions is to provide direct assistance to victims of crime. MOVA staff offers crisis intervention, referrals to appropriate programs and service providers, and information and advocacy to help victims better understand the criminal justice system. Individuals may contact MOVA at 844-878- MOVA to learn more about the free services offered to victims of all crime.

As an exhibitor at the conference, the Boston Bar Association Lawyer Referral Service (BBA LRS) spreads the word about how individuals can receive a referral to an attorney. The BBA LRS has been a trusted resource for over 60 years and makes unbiased referrals to qualified attorneys throughout Eastern Massachusetts.  To receive a referral, please contact us by phone at 617-742-0625, or through our online request form.

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Attorney General Maura Healy welcomes conference attendees with remarks about victim services throughout the state. 

 

Lawyer for the Day Program at the Boston Housing Court

Last week, the Boston Bar Association (BBA) hosted its yearly program to train lawyers to volunteer at the Lawyer for the Day Program at the Boston Housing Court.  We thought this would be a good time to inform those with a landlord/tenant issue about the resource.

If you have a case in the Boston Housing Court, and do not have a lawyer, you may be able to get legal help at no cost. The Housing Court Lawyer for the Day Program helps low-income tenants and landlords with cases in the Boston Housing Court.  Volunteers are available on Wednesdays from 9am to 1pm for public housing issues and on Thursdays from 9am to 1pm for both public and private housing issues. The clinic is located on the 5th floor of the courthouse, 24 New Chardon St., 5th Floor, Boston. Assistance is in court only. The volunteers for this program are not available by phone or email.

The volunteers may help eligible low-income tenants and landlords with the following:

  • Brief advice
  • Assistance in preparing motions
  • Representation in mediation or negotiation
  • Representation on a Limited Assistance Representation (LAR) basis in court hearings
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If you are interested in hiring a lawyer through the BBA’s Lawyer Referral Service, call us today at 617-742-0625 or contact us through our online request.

Are You Facing Debt or Bankruptcy?

If you are concerned with debt, facing calls from your creditors, or being brought to court for collections, it is a good idea to speak with a lawyer.  An experienced attorney can discuss your options, and help find the best solution for your problem.

Filing bankruptcy on your own can be complicated, and your case is less likely to be dismissed with the help of a lawyer.

We make referrals to lawyers who are experienced in bankruptcy law throughout eastern Massachusetts, and offer low-fee consultations. Call us today at 617-742-0625 or contact us online to find out more.

Our intake staff can even screen to see if your income would qualify you for a referral to a free legal service.

Check out our Bankruptcy page for more information.

 

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MA Domestic Workers Bill of Rights: What You Need to Know

Last year, the state of Massachusetts passed a Domestic Workers Bill of Rights, which gives household workers (nannies, maids, housekeepers, home health aides, and others) more employment rights. Some of these protections include stronger wage and hour rights, protections against discrimination and sexual harassment, and rights to maternity leave.

If you need more information on all the rights that now apply, check out the National Domestic Worker’s Alliance website; here.

If you think your rights, or the rights of someone else, have been violated, speaking to a lawyer is recommended.  The Boston Bar Lawyer Referral Service can refer you an experienced employment lawyer.  You may contact us online or call us at 617-742-0625 to speak with one of our intake staff in English or Spanish. We also refer to bilingual attorneys in a variety of languages.

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What to Know About Slip & Fall Cases

If you suffered a slip and fall on an icy public sidewalk, a wet supermarket floor, or a stair, it may not be your fault.

Slip and falls are a big issue this time of year when surfaces are icy and slick. It is the responsibility of the business or owner to clear their property of snow and ice for the safety of those walking by. There may be a legal duty to make sure the sidewalk is properly salted, or wet areas in a store are properly labeled.  This means the owner may be liable for any injuries that you suffered.

Time is of the essence with personal injury cases, so if something happens, it is always best to consult an attorney right away. If you have any questions whatsoever about your slip and fall case, please call us at (617)-742-0625 or submit a request online so we can refer you to an attorney today.

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Important Information about Immigration Changes

Several weeks ago, President Obama announced changes to current immigration policy that will protect nearly 65,000 undocumented people in Massachusetts from deportation (“Administrative Relief”). Because the policies have not been put into law yet, at this time no applications are available for individuals.

This means that it’s very important to be careful of scams, from either “notarios” or immigration consultants that ask you to pay money for assistance.  You should NOT be paying anyone any money at this time for advice.  Also, remember only a licensed attorney can give legal advice.

The applications for relief will be ready between February and May of 2015.  When the applications become available, there will be free legal clinics offered through the City of Boston Office of the New Bostonians for those who qualify.  Others may need to contact a private lawyer.  A good place to start your search is with the Boston Bar Lawyer Referral Service.  All of our lawyers are licensed and experienced to help you with your immigration needs.   You can contact us by the phone at 617-742-0625 or online here.

We will be updating our website with more information about the immigration policy changes as they are announced, so check back with us later for more details.

 

 

BBA LRS Attends Massachusetts Conference for Women


Early this month, the BBA’s Lawyer Referral Service (LRS) participated in the Massachusetts Conference for Women to raise awareness about its services to the public.  Nearly 10,000 individuals attended the event at the Boston Convention Center.

For more than 50 years, the LRS has been a trusted resource for those looking for legal help.  Check out our Frequently Asked Questions page for more information on how we can assist you.

If you think you need legal help, contact us at 617-742-0625, or submit a request online, here. 

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Massachusetts Health Connector Now Open

Open enrollment began last weekend for health insurance plans purchased through the state’s independent marketplace, the Massachusetts Health Connector (“The Connector”).   The Connector serves those who don’t get health insurance through their employers.  If you do not have health insurance and are:

  • self-employed;
  • unemployed;
  • employed, but work somewhere that does not offer insurance coverage

Make sure you know your rights as a consumer. Using the Connector differs from buying insurance coverage directly from an insurer, so it’s important that you understand your options. Boston Globe article, Straightforward answers about using Mass. Health Connector lays out the basic information you need to know.

You can also visit the Connector website directly (www.MAhealthconnector.org) to explore coverage options and find out more.

If you are looking to hire a lawyer for any legal problem, including getting health insurance coverage, you can contact the intake staff at the BBA’s Lawyer Referral Service either on the phone (617-742-0625) or through our online request form.