Tag Archives: Supreme Judicial Court

SJC Reverses Appeals Court on Standing Requirements Under the Zoning Act – With Record Speed

All zoning conformities are alike, to rephrase Tolstoy’s famous opening line, but each zoning-related injury is injurious in its own way. Such has been the time-honored tenant of Massachusetts law for abutter standing under the Zoning Act.  To successfully challenge … Continue reading

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Appearance of Bias Not Enough to Invalidate Appraisal – Unless the Contract Says Otherwise

When parties enter a contract involving an appraised value of real estate, they need eventual finality with respect to that appraised value, but they also want fairness in the appraisal process. In Buffalo-Water 1, LLC v. Fidelity Real Estate Company, … Continue reading

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Real Estate Agents Not Covered by Independent Contractor Statute

In 2004, the Massachusetts Legislature passed M.G.L. c. 149, § 148B, known as the independent contractor statute, to prevent the misclassification of employees as independent contractors, which would deny them benefits they would otherwise be entitled to as employees.  When … Continue reading

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On Solid Ground’s Top Five Stories of 2013

With 2013 coming to an end, it’s time to take a look back at the year that was.  Each year brings new developments in real estate, environmental and construction law, and 2013 was certainly no exception.  Here’s our pick for … Continue reading

Posted in Broker Liability, Construction, Contracts, Environmental, Hazardous Materials, Municipal, Wetlands, Zoning | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Massachusetts Mechanic’s Liens: A Property Owner’s Perspective

A mechanic’s lien is an encumbrance on private property to secure payment for a contractor (or subcontractor) or material supplier for labor or materials provided to improve that property.  (Not familiar with mechanic’s liens? Review my earlier post on the … Continue reading

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Contractors & Property Owners Beware: SJC Decision Highlights Risk of Penalties for Environmental Violations

The Supreme Judicial Court’s (SJC) recent decision in Franklin Office Park Realty Corp. v. Comm’r of Dept. of Envt’l Protection, 466 Mass. 454 (2013), is a good news, bad news proposition for Massachusetts property owners and contractors.  At issue in … Continue reading

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Commercial Landlord Must Wait Until End of Lease to Recover from Defaulting Tenant Says Supreme Judicial Court

As we reported previously here, the Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled last year in 275 Washington Street Corp. v. Hudson River International, LLC that, in the absence of specific lease language to the contrary, “the bright-line rule remains that a landlord … Continue reading

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Brokers Beware: SJC Issues Ruling in Closely-Followed DeWolfe v. Hingham Centre Case

The Supreme Judicial Court’s (SJC) recent ruling in DeWolfe v. Hingham Centre, Ltd., is a warning to Massachusetts real estate brokers:  What you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.  The case is also … Continue reading

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SJC Again Rebuffs Local Attempts to Control 40B Low-Income Housing Developments

Zoning Board of Appeals of Sunderland v. Sugarbush Meadow, LLC is the Supreme Judicial Court’s (SJC) latest snub to municipal attempts to control the development of low income housing.  Despite testimony from the Town’s Fire Chief that the Town lacks … Continue reading

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SJC: Contracts Can Shorten Statute of Limitations Period, Unless…

Despite the fairly straightforward nature of the issue, before the recent case of Creative Playthings Franchising, Corp. v. James A. Reiser, Jr., the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) had not categorically ruled whether parties to a contract could agree to … Continue reading

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Another Landmark Foreclosure Decision

On Friday, the Supreme Judicial Court in Eaton vs. Federal National Mortgage Association issued another important decision concerning the mortgage foreclosure process in Massachusetts.  The Court concluded that if a bank uses the auction process to foreclose a mortgage, then … Continue reading

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