Massachusetts Law Articles

New law makes it easier to sue for wage discrimination

A new federal law signed by President Obama will make it easier to sue an employer for wage discrimination. The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act is named after Lilly Ledbetter, who worked as a plant manager for Goodyear Tire but realized only after some years had passed that she was getting paid less than her male counterparts. When she sued for wage discrimination, the U.S. Supreme Court threw the case out, saying she had filed it

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Many die each year from hospital and nursing home infections

A large Boston jury verdict in the case of a woman who died from an infection while undergoing cancer treatment illustrates a growing trend across the country toward lawsuits against health-care providers for causing (or not preventing) such infections. Nationally, more than 2 million people each year develop serious infections while they’re in the hospital being treated for something else. And about 90,000 of them die as a result. In addition, another 1.4 million people each

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Limo company sued for dropping off drunk passenger

A limousine company can be sued where it dropped off a drunk passenger at his car and the passenger then drove drunk and killed someone. The limo had been hired by six men attending a bachelor party. It picked them up at a Boston sports bar, drove them to a Rhode Island club, and then returned them to the sports bar. Sadly, one of the men drove off and had an accident. He killed an off-duty

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Child support guidelines change in Massachusetts

The Massachusetts child support guidelines have been thoroughly revised for 2009. That means that anyone who gets divorced in 2009 or after will have the amount of their child support payments calculated under new rules. If you have a child support order from a divorce that occurred before 2009, your payments won’t change. And you can’t go to court and get a new order just because there are new guidelines. However, if you have a significant

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Workers at small companies can sue for sex discrimination

Employees who work at tiny companies can sue for sex discrimination, the Massachusetts high court recently ruled. In the past, it was widely believed that a company couldn’t be sued for sex discrimination if it had fewer than six employees. That’s because the state sex discrimination law says that it only applies to companies with six or more workers. But the court said that an employee at a tiny company could sue under another law –

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Can divorcing spouses blog about their ex?

It’s no surprise that divorce is unpleasant, and many spouses want to tell the world about how awful their ex-partner is. In the past, a spouse’s ability to do this was limited. They might want to tell the whole world, but in practice they usually just told a few friends over a drink or two. But today, it’s easy to publish a blog that can be read by anyone with Internet access. And a growing number

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How to leave a vacation home to your children

You might think it’s easy to leave a vacation home to your children in your will. But there are many issues that can arise. For instance, over time children might squabble over whether to sell the property or who will pay for major repairs or renovations, especially if some children use the home more than others. And there are tax, liability and asset protection issues to consider as well. Here’s a look at some of your

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When buying a home, it’s not always easy being green

Homebuyers, businesses, and residential and commercial tenants are all showing interest in “green” buildings these days – those designed to save energy, use sustainable materials and have less of an impact on the environment. Many buyers and renters are willing to pay a little more for a green building – especially if they can recoup their money through energy savings.

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It’s easier to sue a store for selling liquor to a minor

It’s easier to sue a bar or a store for selling alcohol to a minor, under a recent decision from the Massachusetts Appeals Court. In this case a teenage boy went to a store and bought a 30-pack of beer. He shared it with some friends. One of the friends then drove away and struck another car, severely injuring someone. The injured person sued the store. Ordinarily, a store can be sued for selling alcohol to

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Mass. businesses must do more to stop identity theft

Many Massachusetts businesses will have to adopt new procedures to prevent the theft of sensitive customer information, as a result of new state regulations that take effect on May 1. The new rules put Massachusetts in the forefront of protecting consumers’ private data and preventing identity theft. However, they also create many new hurdles for some businesses at a time when those businesses are facing larger economic challenges.

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