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Hampden County
Bar Association
P.O. Box 559 ยท 50 State Street
Springfield, MA 01102-0559

Telephone: (413) 732-4660
Facsimile: (413) 732-6882

March 2013 Newsletter



Alekman DiTusa, LLC*

Annino, Draper & Moore, P.C.*

Bacon Wilson, P.C.*

Bulkley, Richardson & Gelinas, LLP*

Connor, Morneau & Olin, LLP*

Cooley Shrair, P.C.*

Crear, Chadwell & Dos Santos, P.C.

Dalsey & Albano*

DiSanti Law Offices*

Doherty, Wallace, Pillsbury & Murphy, P.C.*

Egan, Flanagan & Cohen, P.C.*

Gelinas & Lefebvre, P.C.

Goldsmith, Katz & Argenio, P.C.*

Hare, Stamm & Harriss, P.C.*

Hendel & Collins, P.C.

Law Office of Thomas A. Kenefick, III*

Law Offices of Thomas M. Libbos*

Lyon & Fitzpatrick, LLP*

Law Offices of Stephen R. Manning

McCormick, Paulding & Huber, LLP

Morrison Mahoney, LLP

Pellegini, Seeley, Ryan & Blakesley, P.C.*

Peskin, Courchesne & Alle, P.C.*

Robinson Donovan, P.C.*

Siddall & Siddall, P.C.*

Skoler, Abbott & Presser, P.C.

Sullivan, Hayes & Quinn, LLC

Szlachetka Dubay, P.C.*

Welch & Barba, P.C.*

Nancy L. Altobelli, Esq.

Michael J. Ashe, Jr.*

Robert H. Astor, Esq.*

John G. Bagley, Esq.

Wm. Travaun Bailey, Esq.

Steven L. Baumohl, Esq.*

Eugene B. Berman, Esq.*

Hon. Henry J. Boroff*

George E. Bourguignon, Jr., Esq.

Peter M. Burns, Esq.

Carol J. Kantany-Casartello, Esq.*

Charles R. Casartello, Jr., Esq.*

Raymond F. Catuogno*

Lance S. Chavin, Esq.*

Michael J. Chernick, Esq.*

David K. Chivers, Esq.*

Hon. Philip A. Contant*

Hon. Rebekah J. Crampton-Kamukala*

Hon. Beth A. Crawford

Jane E. Crosby, Esq.*

Jennifer Midura-D’Amour, Esq.*

Theodore E. Dimauro, Esq.*

William J. Doherty, Esq.*

Henry M. Downey, Esq.*

Mark R. Draymore, Esq.

Philip M. Duda, Esq.*

Hon. Patricia M. Dunbar*

Hon. Nancy Dusek-Gomez*

Margaret E. Eckert, Esq.*

Hal Etkin, Esq.*

Jack Ferriter, Esq.*

Hon. Linda S. Fidnick*

William M. Fitzgerald, Esq.

William D. Fitzpatrick, Esq.*

Chester E. Flavin, Esq.*

Hon. Daniel A. Ford*

Anthony Gallant, Esq.*

John E. Garber, Esq.

Hon. Anne M. Geoffrion*

Alfred J. Geoffrion, Jr., Esq.*

Hon. Ann M. Gibbons*

Claudette-Jean Girard, Esq.*

Efrem A. Gordon, Esq.*

Hon. John M. Greaney*

Kyle R. Guelcher, Esq.*

Hon. Robert L. Howarth*

Hon. Mary E. Hurley*

Hon. Barbara M. Hyland*

Michael O. Jennings, Esq.*

Hon. Bertha D. Josephson*

Julia Wilkins-Kay, Esq.

Craig W. Kaylor, Esq.

Hon. George C. Keady, Jr.*

Hon. C. Jeffrey Kinder*

Hon. Catherine Watson-Koziol*

Hon. Robert F. Kumor, Jr. *

David A. Ladizki, Esq.*

Paul G. Lalonde, Esq.*

Steven M. Leecock, Esq.

David L. Lorenzi, Esq.*

Hon. Mark D Mason*

Peter D. Mazza, Esq.*

Carolyn L. McCaffrey, Esq.

Hon. C. Brian McDonald*

John P. McKenna, Esq.*

John McNally, Esq.*

John E. Miller, Esq.

Randy J. Milou, Esq.*

Keith A. Minoff, Esq.

Jeffrey S. Morneau, Esq.*

Hon. Robert S. Murphy, Jr.

Christopher B. Myhrum, Esq.*

Donna D. Nardi, Esq.*

Hon. Kenneth P. Neiman*

Jeffrey K. O'Connor, Esq.

Joseph M. Pacella, Esq.*

Hon. Tina S. Page*

John J. Pajak, Esq.*

Bruce J. Patryn, Esq.

Hon. John M. Payne, Jr.*

Jill M. McCarthy Payne, Esq.*

Hon. Joseph A. Pellegrino*

Hon. Gail L. Perlman*

Hon. Judith J. Phillips*

Hon. Patricia T. Poehner*

Hon. Michael A. Ponsor*

Angelo J. Puppolo, Jr., Esq.*

John L. Roberts, Esq., CELA

Hon. David S. Ross*

Catherine Z. Rossi, Esq.*

Hon. Mary Lou Rup*

Hon. David G. Sacks*

Jeffrey B. Sagalyn, Esq.*

David W. Sanborn, Esq.

Robert T. Santaniello, Esq.*

Hon. Kent B. Smith*

Hon. Daniel J. Swords*

Jennifer A. Thorn, Esq.*

Karl W. Topor, Esq.*

Christina M. Turgeon, Esq.*

Hon. Ariane D. Vuono*

Hon. William T. Walsh*

William Welch, Esq.

James B. Winston, Esq.

Raymond W. Zenkert, Jr., Esq.

*Sustaining Members over two consecutive years


Please save the date as there is a “Springfield Day” in the works whereby our new Court Administrator, Lewis ‘Harry’ Spence, will visit the Hall of Justice tentatively on February 28th from 1-3 pm for an

informational meeting.  Please consider attending as this is an important opportunity to depict the local impact from recent spending cuts and the 4 or 5 year hiring freeze and to lobby for relief.

As part of my duties as President, I have the privilege of serving on the House of Delegates (HOD) of the Massachusetts Bar Association.  Despite having concern over the MBA’s direct marketing of their Lawyer Referral Service within Hampden County courthouses and media outlets, I have always been a proud member of both organizations and can report to you that the MBA continues to serve our members’ interests well.  By having a seat at their table, our bar association is given instant access to a great deal of information, legislative trends and lobbying efforts, other initiatives and vast resources that we would not otherwise have access to or be able to afford.  We also benefit directly from various grants awarded by the Mass Bar Foundation.  Therefore, as part of the Bob Holloway Challenge, I will be calling on all of you to consider joining the MBA as a means of strengthening our ties to such a venerable organization.

To strengthen my point, I want to summarize for you three important takeaways from the most recent HOD meeting, which are: (1) what Harry Spence stated about the inevitability of E-filing, 15 potential court house consolidations and other changes to the Trial Court; (2) the quiet but looming effort of two District Attorneys from out East to get the SJC to adopt a rule to force criminal defendants to make a binding election for a bench trial at the Pre-trial Conference; and (3) the heated debate between the Probate Section Council and Women’s Bar members that are in favor and the Elder Law and Taxation Section Councils that are against the pending initiative to support legislation incorporating the Uniform Probate Code provisions with regard to spousal elective shares into the Massachusetts Uniform Probate Code. 

First, Harry Spence spoke at length about what efforts are underway and what he intends to accomplish during the remaining 4¼ years of his term as the Court Administrator to the Trial Court.  He is compiling data for his report which will be submitted to the SJC by June, which will largely determine the strategic plan that the SJC will adopt for the judiciary.  Mr. Spence appears by all accounts to be a very highly qualified, passionate, innovative and, most of all, tenacious person, so significant changes are coming.  First off, he is an ardent supporter of a judicial pay raise as well as an increased budget for the judiciary as a whole.  It was also clear from his comments that E-filing will arrive, first as a pilot, and then (in my humble opinion) permanently to several if not all of the Trial Courts before the close of his term.  Mr. Spence was also proud to announce that life tenure is effectively gone as of January 7th of this year, as the Trial Court can directly manage its employees and require accountability for each individual’s efforts, so there will be additional personnel changes.  He announced that there will be 200 additional hires over and above the present staffing levels across the Trial Court.  He was impressed by the desire for change internally amongst employees who resoundingly wanted change pursuant to an internal survey.  In comparing courts on a “cost per case” analysis (which I am not convinced is necessarily the best analysis of time and effort), he said that 15 of the 101 court houses are losing a lot of money (about $35 million for those courts with 2,000 or less cases per year), while 15 other courthouses are doing 45% of the business in the state with Springfield being number two in that regard.  I am pleased to report that, after cornering Mr. Spence who had mentioned by name Great Barrington, I was told that none of the 15 court houses presently recommended for consolidation within the next 10 years are in Western Massachusetts, largely due to the relative distance between courthouses.  Of note is the fact that Mr. Spence appears to be keenly in favor of a unitary versus a departmental court system, but for now, he only wants to consolidate back office functions within courthouses where there are multiple sessions of the Trial Court.  I look forward to working with all of you to let Harry Spence and, thus, the Trial Court know that they need to provide a disproportionate amount of new hires and funding to us in order to make up for the deficits that the Hampden County courts have been forced to operate under.

Secondly, I want to let criminal practitioners know that pressure is mounting to effectively eliminate the bench trial election as we know it in District Court.  A recommendation will be given to the SJC from a joint working group no later than March 30, 2013 as to whether or not the SJC should adopt Special Counsel’s recommendation that a defendant should be given a single opportunity at the pre-trial hearing to enter a binding election to waive his/her right to a jury trial to avoid “judge shopping”.  For the SJC report see http://www.mass.gov/courts/sjc/docs/sjc-statement-110112.pdf.  The MBA’s representative on the joint working group, its V.P. Robert Harnais, is on the joint working group and is actively opposing the efforts from certain District Attorneys from Eastern Massachusetts to tilt the group’s recommendation in favor of supporting such a monumental change.  It seems clear that the SJC would prefer to enact this change in order to counteract the negative press coming from the Boston Globe Spotlight Team’s story concerning the high rate of acquittal at bench trial for cases involving operating under the influence in the District Court.  In my opinion this would be a terrible blow to defendants and to our already burdened system as a whole.  Without knowing who the judge will be at the trial, it seems clear that defendants will almost never elect to have a bench trial.  This will inevitably result in inefficiency in the judicial system, as these cases will take much longer and require more resources as jury trials.  I urge all of you to provide me with your ideas and/or criticisms so that we can take a position as a bar association on this very serious issue. 

Finally, I want to let our members know that a spirited debate was held and the tax and elder law lawyers were unable to put the brakes on the vote to lobby for a spousal elective share law in Massachusetts (see Senate Bill 1245 filed by Cynthia Creem).  The proponents want to change the reality that a spouse has less of a right to their spouse’s estate in death than he/she would have if they were divorced.  The opponents cautioned that there may be ERISA problems and that this will effectively take away the rights of families to elect to disinherit each other in favor of a disabled child and/or to provide large gifts to charity.  As this is foreign to my practice, be aware that this legislation is pending, and I can also provide written position statements for and against to anyone of interest.

Last but not least, we should all congratulate Craig Kaylor, General Counsel of Hampden Bank, who battled back to edge out Jeff Morneau (2nd) and Glen Ringbloom (3rd) to win the HCBA’s first charity poker tournament.  This fundraiser turned out to be a terrific social event and everyone present left calling for it to be held again sometime soon, so you can look forward to another tournament this fall.  I also want to thank the Honorable Henry J. Boroff and our staff, board members and all of the other HCBA members and their families for volunteering on short notice to help serve lunch to a very large crowd of those in need this past month.  After the excesses of the Holiday season, there is nothing that causes greater reflection or is more rewarding than to help out such a worthy cause.  Although this is usually a New Lawyer’s event, we all agreed that additional opportunities will be scheduled for all of our members to participate in the near future. 


The Hampden County Bar Association would like to welcome the following attorneys and students as new members:   

Michelle Cruz, Esq. - Dept of Economics & Community Development
Carrie L. Domzalski, Esq.
Jonathan A. Eisner, Esq. - Facchini & Facchini, P.C.
Courtney J. Martin, Esq.
Christopher E. McDonald, Esq.
Jane L. Mantolesky, Esq. - Fitzgerald Attorneys at Law, P.C.
Christine M. Pikula, Esq. - Law Office of Edward M. Pikula
Jennifer A. Rosenthal, Esq. -Committee for Public Counsel Services
Meredith Lindsay Ryan, Esq.
Kathryn L. Strawn, Esq.
Rebecca M. Thibault, Esq. - Doherty, Wallace, Pillsbury & Murphy, P.C.
Allison B. Turner, Esq. - Siddall & Siddall, P.C.


Benefits - Connect with the HCBA and Save!

What is an HCBA membership worth?
Here are just a few examples…
Save 15 percent on all HCBA CLE's and Brown Bag Lunch Seminars


A special invitation has been extended to the members of the Hampden County Bar Association.  Effective February 1, 2013, The Colony Club will be accepting membership applications from qualified HCBA members.  A reduced initiation fee of $200.00 will be in effect for HCBA Members who submit a completed application by March 31, 2013 and meet The Colony Club membership requirements.  A limited number of memberships are available.  For more information contact Heidi Edwards at (413) 732-4101.

Hall of Justice Member Conveniences:
Photocopier Benefits
We have a copier in our lobby for use by our members while at the Hampden County Hall of Justice. Many of our members have already taken advantage of this useful benefit. All you need to get started is your user code. If you would like to have your code emailed to you, please click here to send us an email.

Computer Terminal w/Internet Access & Wireless Internet
Members have access to the computer terminal in our lobby that is equipped with Internet service, Microsoft Office and a printer. For those members with laptops, we also have the wireless router that we installed for our members who would like to access the Internet. Both of these services are available exclusively to our members. Please stop in or e-mail us at admin@hcbar.org to obtain the password.

Coffee Stop
The HCBA now has a Keurig for our members to enjoy! A cup of coffee/tea is only $.75 and can be purchased in our office. Don't forget, your "cup of joe" has to be consumed in our lobby and can't be taken into the courtrooms. Members can also take advantage of use of a microwave oven also located in our lobby for quick warm-ups.

Documents Served and Documents Notarized
The HCBA lobby has a Drop Box for attorneys who require documents to be served through the Hampden County Sheriff. The sheriff's office picks up documents daily. Our office also has a notary public on staff to assist attorneys and clients who may need a last minute document witnessed.

Exclusive Sponsors/Vendors

ProShred ~ http://www.proshred.com/

20 % of Shredding Services ~ click here for prices before discount.
Click here for the ProShred pamphlet

Insurance Services thru Millbrook Benefits, Axia Group & LePage Financial Services ~ http://www.millbrookbenefits.com/home.htm

Discounts on various insurance products including Professional Liability.
Waiver of annual fee of $125.00 to access group health insurance for small groups.
One stop shopping and personalized service.
Millbrook has custom designed insurance solutions to meet your specific needs.
Click here for more details

AXIA Insurance Benefits Reminder for Members

Are you sure that your Insurance coverage is correct? You need to know this before you need the coverage. AXiA offers a free coverage analysis for:
Personal Insurance
Auto, home umbrella
Business Insurance
Property and liability
Workers compensation
Life & Health
In addition you can sign up for notifications to alert you when:
• Your inspection sticker is due
• Your license is up for renewal
• Or your registration is due to renew
.......And it's free!
On certain polices we have an additional discount of 5% only for members of the Hampden Bar Association! For more information, contact the AXia Group at 413-205-AXia(2942).

Hampden Bank ~ https://www.hampdenbank.com/

Click here for a brochure on Hampden Bank.
Hampden Bank would like to extend the following special offer to all members of the Hampden County Bar Association.

Professional Services: Line of Credit*
No application fee • No annual fee
Credit Score Line Amount APR
700-749 $ 7,500 Prime +2.00%
750+ $10,000 Prime +1.00%
*requires an IOLTA Checking account with Hampden Bank
Certificate of Deposit Specials
Add .10% to the Annual Percentage Yield on any CD with a new Bright Choice
Business Checking account.
Add .20% to the Annual Percentage Yield on any CD with a new Bright Choice
Business Checking account and IOLTA Checking account.
Please contact Hector Toledo, Vice President Retail Sales Director, 413.335.3483.
Offer valid thru June 1, 2013. May be rescinded at any time.

Pensions & Benefits Associates, Inc. ~ http://www.manta.com/c/mm27bp8/pension-benefits-assoc-inc

Reduce plan document fee
Reduce base in per participant rates

Elm's Cleaners ~ http://www.manta.com/c/mm2zlsy/elms-cleaners-expert

Free pickup and delivery anywhere in Hampden County
Elm’s cleaners will go to your office or residence.
10% on dry cleaning & minor tailoring (excluding shirts)

Member Discount Programs

Save 25 percent on any website packages through ESQSites123.com
We are pleased to announce that the HCBA has formed an alliance with EsqSites123.com to provide member benefits to all of our members. EsqSites123.com provides attorneys with low cost website design and hosting packages. As a member of the HCBA, you are entitled to a 25% savings on any of their already low-priced website packages! For more information, please visit our member page at http://esqsites123.com/jumpPage/hcba/.

LexisNexis HCBA Discount Program
The Hampden County Bar Association has partnered with LexisNexis to offer:
20 percent discount on new subscriptions to LexisNexis Matthew Bender Publications and Annotate Laws of Massachusetts:

20 percent discount on new LexisNexis Online Research Subscriptions
30 percent discount on LexisNexis Total Practice Advantage Subscriptions
HCBA members receive a free practice profile listing in Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory

For more information contact Suzanne Supina at (860) 604-8633 or via email at suzanne.supina@lexisnexis.com.

Save 20% on UPS Shipping through Unishippers. Hampden County Bar Association is pleased to announce a new Member Benefit Program offered by Unishippers/UPS! This member benefit allows members of the Hampden County Bar Association, currently spending $10,000 or less per year on their shipping needs, to receive a 20% discount through the Unishippers/UPS program. Click here for a brochure.

Before any pricing can be offered, each account must be approved by UPS to receive the discounted rate. Signing up is easy. To see if you are eligible, please send an e-mail inquiry to marketing.support@unishippers.info providing your name, address, phone and e-mail address, or call 1.800.713.2111. Make sure to indicate that you are a member of the Hampden County Bar Association. If you qualify, an account number will be assigned and you'll receive a Welcome Packet via e-mail. Simply follow the instructions for use and start saving 20% on each and every package you send!

Save 15 percent on American Bar Association web store purchases including books, CLE course materials and other products - enter code PAB6EHCB upon checkout For further information on what is available, click here to visit the ABA WebStore.

Reduced rates on credit card processing fees through First National Merchant Solutions. For more information contact Richard Rheault at (413) 527-1304 or via email at rrheault@fnni.com.

20 percent discount off Paychex payroll processing charges. For more information contact Jamie Scherban at (413) 731-8930 ext. 47954 or via email at jscherban@paychex.com. (Mention National Account Code 5712.)

20 percent discount off the purchase of new subscriptions to Westlaw Forms and on any print volume from West’s Massachusetts Practice Series.

15 percent discount on new subscriptions to West Case Notebook with LiveNote technology. Free trial for WestlawNext. Contact Karen Katz, Esq. at Karen.katz@thomsonreuters.com or 617-935-9331.

10 percent discount on Disability insurance with Standard Insurance Company - the Hampden County Bar Association is pleased to present an opportunity to its members to apply for a quality individual disability insurance policy from Standard Insurance Company at a 10% discount. The Protector+ SM3 individual disability income insurance is guaranteed renewable and includes many excellent benefits. It can be customized with optional riders and benefit periods to meet your needs. For more information contact Financial Management Systems at 413-736-5550 or email Mickey Savoy at msavoy2001@msn.com or Javad Darouian at jdarouian@gmail.com.

Catuogno Court Reporting & StenTel Transcription Services is offering the Hampden County Bar Association members a special rate on their Legal Transcription service. They have five offices across Massachusetts and Rhode Island with spacious conference rooms available for all of your deposition, client meetings, arbitrations and videoconferencing needs. With locations in Springfield, Worcester, Boston, Chelmsford and Providence, Catougno Court Reporting & Stentel Transcriptions is the convenient solution for all of your legal support services. Take advantage of the following discounts using your Hampden County Bar Membership to reduce costs and increase your bottom line:

10% discount on depositions;
• 10% discount on transcription services;
• 10% discount on video conferencing services; and
• 10% discount on statements and interviews by phone with transcript.

Additional 10% discount when you become a member of the "Lawyers Conference Center"

Contact Sten-Tel Inc. website at http://www.stentel.com/ or call (888) 228-8646 to take advantage of your special Hampden County Bar Association Member Benefit. If you have limited staff or if you want to save money, you will want to hear about their transcription services!

Save 15 percent discount on automotive maintenance/repair at Silk’s Auto Service, Inc., 51 Dale Street, Springfield, MA, (413) 733-9157.

$10.00 discount on Massage Therapy at Maleckas Therapeutic Massage, 501 Belmont Avenue, Springfield, MA, (413) 627-1410.

10 percent discount on computer repairs, data security, upgrades and installation of software for email encryption at Bob’s Computer Service, (413) 204-8339 or info@bobscomputerrepairs.com.


On Wednesday, January 16, 2013, Governor Patrick announced his judicial nomination of Edward J. McDonough, Jr., as an Associate Justice of the Superior Court.  Congratulations on this nomination.

Attorney Jeffrey L. McCormick was recently named president of the Massachusetts chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates.  Congratulations on this achievement!

Attorney Felicy Hardee of Bulkley, Richardson and Gelinas, LLP was recently elected as President of the Valley Community Development Corporation.  Congratulations on this achievement!

Thank you to Attorney Karen J. Murphy for donating a ream of paper to the HCBA lobby copier.  Donations are always welcome.

Congratulations to the following Hampden County Bar Association members who won tickets to the Falcons hockey team home games for the month of January: Attorney Michael J. Grilli, Attorney Bruce J. Patryn, Attorney Stanley R. Light, and Attorney Nancy Ramos. Go Falcons!


The New Lawyer Section held a luncheon for the homeless  on Saturday, January 19, 2013 at The First Congregational Church at 45 Maple Street in Springfield.  Many thanks to all the attorneys and their family members who helped prepare and serve over 100 lunches.


The Hampden County Bar Association Education Committee would like to thank the following individuals who took time out of their busy schedule to present an educational training during the past month:

Christina M. Turgeon, Esq.
Kathleen Cavanaugh-Whitley, Esq.       


February 15, 2013 - Brown Bag Lunch:

Social Media - 1pm - 2pm
Moderator:  Jack Ferriter, Esquire of Ferriter & Ferriter, LLC
Presenter: Mr. Erik Smelser, Law Firm Marketing Specialist at LexisNexis
Location: Hampden County Hall of Justice, Commissioner's Room, 2nd Floor, 50 State Street, Spfld.

February 25, 2013 - Criminal Brown Bag Lunch:

Western Mass Correctional Alcohol Center "Howard Street" - 1pm - 2pm
Moderator: Elizabeth G. Dineen, Esquire, Chair-Criminal Justice Dept/
Bay Path College
Presenter: Mr. James Kelleher, Asst. Superintendent of the Western Mass Correctional Alcohol Center
Location: Hampden County Hall of Justice, Commissioner's Room,  50 State Street, 2nd Floor, Spfld.

March 1, 2013 - How To Series Lunch:

MUPC Effects on Small Estates - 12pm - 2pm
Presenters: Alfred J. Geoffrion, Jr., Esquire
                   Maureen Lempke, Hampden County Registry of Probate

Location: Hampden County Hall of Justice, Commissioner's Room,  50 State Street, 2nd Floor, Spfld.

March 4, 2013 - Criminal Brown Bag Lunch:

Western Mass Correctional Facility - 1pm - 2pm
Moderator: Elizabeth G. Dineen, Esquire, Chair-Criminal Justice Dept/
Bay Path College
Presenter: Ms. Patricia Murphy, Assistant Superintendent of the Western
Mass Regional Women's Correctional Center in Chicopee
Location: Hampden County Hall of Justice, Commissioner's Room,  50 State Street, 2nd Floor, Spfld.


Brown Bag Lunch Seminars

Board of Bar Overseers/Issues & Developments

March:  Personal Injury Round-Up & Civil Practice Case Law Update  (date       
             Pension Laws & Reform  

Criminal Law Education Series

Superior Court View from the Bench 

How To Series          
March:  MUPC/Real Estate



The third installment of the Practice Development Series, "Getting Help In Preparing for Your First Trial" will be held on Monday, February 11, 2013 from 1:00 - 2:00 p.m. in the Commissioner's Room, 50 State Street, 2nd Floor, Springfield.   Presenters are Attorney Charles R. Casartello, Jr. and Attorney Thomas A. Kenefick, III.  This installment is being sponsored by Attorney Joseph M. Pacella and offered free of charge.  Click here for registration form.

The Practice Development Series  discusses "Real Life Lawyering". The series objective is to support lawyers, particularly new practitioners, solo practitioners and members of small firms, to improve professional skills, increase collegiality and decrease the business, liability ethical and health risks of practice. These sessions will traditionally be held on the 2nd Monday of the month, 1pm – 2pm and are being offered free of charge.  Lunch will be provided.

We would like to thank Attorney Charles R. Casartello, Jr. and the Hampden County Bar Association Arbitration & Mediation Services for their sponsorship of the December and January Practice Development Series lunch.

Upcoming Session Dates and Topics:

March 11, 2013 – Dealing with Difficult Adversaries
April 8, 2013 - Business Development, Networking & Marketing


Judges Night

The Hampden County Bar Association will hold its Annual Judicial Dinner on Tuesday, April 2, 2013 at 6:30 p.m. at the Log Cabin, 500 Easthampton Road, Holyoke, with a cocktail hour starting at 5:30 pm.  The keynote speaker will be the Honorable William G. Young of the U.S. District Court.  To register or for more information click here.

1st Annual Charity Poker Tournament - Follow Up

The Hampden County Bar Association held their 1st Annual Texas Hold 'Em Poker Tournament on January 24, 2013.  This event was well attended and we would like to thank Attorney Joseph M. Pacella for organizing the evening.   Congratulations to our prize winners,  Attorney Craig W. Kaylor who took 1st Place, Attorney Jeffrey S. Morneau, 2nd Place winner, and Attorney Glen P. Ringbloom was our 3rd place winner.

Event Photos

Photos of past and current events are always available on our website at http://www.hcbar.org/category/5277/calendar-and-events.htm



New Lawyers Section Lunch

The New Lawyers’ Section next monthly luncheon will be held on Friday, February 22, 2013 at Latitude Restaurant, 1338 Memorial Avenue, West Springfield, MA at 1:00 p.m.  Please RSVP to Andrea Momnie at amomnie@hendelcollins.com so reservations can be made.


The next Real Estate Section lunch will be held on Tuesday, February 12, 2013 at Red Rose Pizzeria at 12:00 p.m.   The guest speaker will be REBA/Real Estate Conveyance Committee who will discuss,  "HUD Changes & SJC's New Rule Relating to Fee Disclosures in Writing".   This lunch is sponsored by REBA and is open to ALL members of the HCBA and recent bar admittees. Click here to register.


The Bankruptcy Section in conjunction with the Hampden County Bar Association  sponsored several seminars on financial literacy.   The seminars provided valuable information to local high school students which was presented as the M. Ellen Carpenter Financial Literacy Program.  Topics of discussion were "Personal Finance and Budgeting", "Buying a Car" and "Using and Understanding Credit".  The seminars were held at local high schools with the final seminar at the Federal Courthouse to provide an understanding of the financial landscape.  We would also like to thank the following volunteers for their help with this program's success: Attorney Andrea M. Momnie, Attorney Henry E. Geberth, Jr., Attorney Gary M. Weiner, Attorney Eric D. Kornblum, Attorney Spencer A. Stone, Attorney Elizabeth Rodriguez-Ross, Attorney Michael B. Katz, Attorney John W. Davis, and Attorney Kara S. Rescia.

Bankruptcy Section Lunch

The Bankruptcy Section will be holding a lunch on Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 12:00 p.m. at Samuels, 1000 West Columbus Avenue, Springfield. Attorney Steven Weiss will lead an informal discussion on avoiding mortgages. Click here for registration form.


Bench Bar Notes From January 17, 2013

View from the Probate Counter



The Massachusetts Uniform Probate Code (“MUPC”) has made significant changes in probating estates.  One of the biggest changes is that practitioners can now obtain the allowance of a Will and the appointment of a Personal Representative without judicial administration or Decree.  This Informal Probate Procedure results in Letters of Authority to a Personal Representative issued by the Probate Court Registrar, Susan Sequin.

Initially Informal Probate Proceedings were less common than Formal Probate, which results in a judicial decree.  After several months of operating under the MUPC approximately 60% of probate proceedings are now informal proceedings.  Letters of Authority issue from the Court in approximately one week to ten (10) days after filing.  Practice tips from the Probate counter include the following:

1.         Informal probates are not available if:

            a.         A copy of the Will is being probated and not the original;

            b.         The Will contains cross-outs or deletions;                   

            c.         Interested parties including minors which will require                                                  formal probate proceeding and the appointment of a Guardian
                        Ad Litem.

2.         In preparing the Petition for Informal Probate list the interested                   parties in categories.  Include all heirs together and all devisees  together.

3.         Interested parties in the Notice for Informal Probate must be the same as interested parties listed in the Petition For Informal Probate.                  

4.         If a Trust is a devisee under the Will it must be listed as an interested party in the Petition.

5.         Deceased spouse or descendants must be listed on the Petition with a date of death. 

6.         Renunciations by a named Personal Representative occurs with MUPC Form 465.  Renunciation must be filed by every person who has equal priority.

7.         Decrees must be filed for every proceeding, as they are no longer     prepared by the Court.

The next Probate Court Bench Bar meeting will be held on Thursday, March 14, 2013 at 4:00 p.m.  The Agenda for the meeting will be sent to all members prior to the meeting.  If you have any questions or would like to add a topic to the Agenda, please contact the HCBA at 732-4648 or admin@hcbar.org.

Volunteer Opportunities

The Probate Court Bench Bar Sub-Committee on Volunteer Opportunities has developed a calendar that gives a brief description of the various volunteer programs, along with the dates that volunteers are needed in the Probate & Family Court. The programs include Conciliation and LAR/Lawyer for the Day opportunities.

Pre-Trial Conference Program

The Probate Pre-Trial Conference Program is a great pro bono opportunity for attorneys to offer their services in the Probate Court. Sessions are held every other Tuesday with an occasional Thursday.  We’d like to thank the following individuals who volunteered for Thursdays in January:  

Helena S. Friedman, Esq.
Claudette-Jean Girard, Esq,

Gina M. Letellier, Esq.
Kathleen F. O'Sullivan, Esq.

Tahirah Amatul-Wadud, Esq.

We are currently in need of volunteers for the following:

Lawyer for the Day: February 8th, 11th, 13th, 15th, 20th, 22nd, 25th, and 27th.

Conciliation: February 12th, 21st, 26th, and 28th

DOR Contempts: February 7th and 14th

If you would like more information regarding the programs requirements or a complete list of the available dates, please contact Jennifer at the Hampden County Legal Clinic at 413-733-6500 or hampdencountylegalclinic@verizon.net


The next District Court Bench Bar meeting will be scheduled in March.  Watch for further details.  The District Court Bench Bar meetings are open to all attorneys who practice in District Court and court personnel as well.   If you have any questions or would like to add a topic to the agenda, please contact the HCBA at 732-4648 or admin@hcbar.org.

District Court Lawyer for the Day

The District Court Lawyer for the Day program continues to grow!  With the assistance from the clerks office more and more individuals are directed to our office for help with Civil District Court matters. This is a great opportunity for attorneys to offer assistance to individuals who require legal advice or help with forms.  We would like to thank the following individuals who volunteered for the month of January:

Charles R. Casartello, Esq.
Tyson R. Ence, Esq.
Lillian Green-Gray, Esq.
Melissa K. Long, Esq.
Lauren M. Marcous, Esq.
Vanessa Martinez, Esq.
Richard C. Morrissey, Esq.
Timothy F. Murphy, Esq.

We are currently in need of volunteers for  the following dates:

February 14th- 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.
February 20th-1:00 to 4:00 p.m.
February 21st-9:00 to 12:00
February 27th-9:00 to 12:00
February 28th-1:00 to 4:00 p.m.

In conjunction with Hampden County Pro Bono day a training session for the District Court Lawyer for the Day Program is being held February 12, 2013, from  2:30 to 4:30 p.m., at the Sovereign Bank Community Room. Click here for more information.

If you are interested in volunteering for any of these dates or a future date, please contact Jennifer at the Hampden County Legal Clinic at 413-733-6500 or hampdencountylegalclinic@verizon.net.


The next Juvenile Court Bench Bar meeting will be held on Wednesday, March 6, 2013 at 1:00 p.m.  The Bench Bar meetings are held the first Wednesday of the month and are open to all attorneys who practice in Juvenile Court.


Bench Bar

The next Western Division Housing Court bench bar meeting will be held Monday, February 11,  2013, Courtroom used by the Housing Court in Northampton, MA at 3:30 p.m.  For more information or to present agenda items contact Jonathan Kane or kane@fierstpucci.com.

Lawyer for the Day-Housing Court

The Lawyer for the Day program continues to be a success due to the many volunteers who have offered their services in Western Division Housing Court on Thursdays. This is a great pro bono opportunity for area attorneys. This program benefits landlords and tenants who are income eligible. We’d like to thank the following individuals who volunteered for Thursdays in January:

Aaron M. Dulles, Esq.
Joel H. Feldman, Esq.
Steven J. Katz, Esq.
Lauren M. Marcous, Esq.
Nathaniel A. Tripp, Esq.
Dorothy Varon, Esq.

We are currently in need of volunteers for  the following date: February 21st.

In conjunction with Hampden County Pro Bono day a training session for the Housing Court Lawyer for the Day Program is being held February 12, 2013, from  9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., at the Sovereign Bank Community Room. Click here for more information.

If you would like to volunteer, please contact Jennifer at the Hampden County legal clinic at 413-733-6500 or hampdencountylegalclinic@verizon.net.




The Arbitration and Mediation Service is proud to announce a new addition to our panel: Attorney Carla W. Newton, an impressive addition to our roster.

The Hampden County Bar Association Arbitration and Mediation Service maintain a roster of highly qualified lawyers and retired judges for arbitration, mediation, or case evaluations. Our panel members, as an accommodation to the Bar Association, have agreed to serve at substantially reduced rates for arbitrations, mediations or case evaluations. Indeed, many of our panel members independently mediate and arbitrate cases at higher rates. Why not conserve resources by coordinating your arbitrations or mediations through the Hampden County Bar Association? We encourage you to support your bar association by keeping the Arbitration and Mediation Service in mind for alternative dispute resolution. For a complete list of arbitrators/mediators and the type of cases they handle, please visit our website at http://www.hcbar.org/category/5292/arbitration-and-mediation.htm.

The 2013 panel registration forms have been sent out.  For information about the service or becoming a member of the panel, please contact our office via email at ArbitrationMediation@hcbar.org or by calling (413) 748-7951. This information may also be obtained by visiting our website at www.hcbar.org.




The 2013 panel registration forms were due by February 1, 2013.  Anyone who has not renewed their registration will be removed from rotation on February 28, 2013. If you did not receive a renewal application or for more information about the LRIS program, contact 413-732-4646 or visit our website at www.hcbar.org.

The Hampden County Bar Association's Lawyer Referral & Information Service (LRIS) meets American Bar Association standards for lawyer referral and has a Reduced Rate Panel. Anyone interested in participating in the lawyer referral program can contact our office at 413-732-4648 or via email at lawyerreferral@hcbar.org. Within the last thirty days, attorneys have submitted over $6,538.00 in LRIS referral percentage payments a result of over $43,500.00 in client fees.  Panel registration forms have been sent out.

If you receive a call from a potential client looking for assistance in an area of law that you do not practice, why not refer them to the Hampden County Bar Association's Lawyer Referral & Information Service? All members of the LRIS are your experienced colleagues. Support your LRIS in providing quality referrals in our community!


Hampden County Pro Bono Recognition Lunch & Training 

The Hampden County Bar Association's Legal Clinic and the Women's Bar Foundation are holding The Hampden County Pro Bono Day Training & Recognition Lunch on Tuesday, February 12, 2013, at the Sovereign Bank Community room from 8:30am to 4:30pm.  Housing Court Lawyer for the Day Training will be 8:30am -12:00pm,  followed by a  Recognition Lunch to thank the many volunteers that have provided pro bono services in Probate, Housing, and District Court.   District Court Lawyer for the Day Training will be 2:00pm - 4:30pm.  Click here for registration form.
The Honorable Francis X. Spina, Associate Justice, Supreme Judicial Court, Supreme Judicial Court Standing Committee on Pro Bono Legal Service, will be delivering the keynote address during lunch.  Lunch is sponsored by Bacon Wilson PC., Women's Bar Foundation, and MassMutual Financial Group.  Space is limited and registration is required.  Please RSVP to Jennifer Redfern at hampdencountylegalclinic@verizon.net.

The Hampden County Legal Clinic has been busy coordinating volunteers for programs in District, Housing and Probate Courts as well as handling foreclosure intake calls.  This would not be possible without the financial support from Massachusetts Mutual. If you are interested in volunteering for any of these programs, please contact Jennifer at the Hampden County legal clinic at hampdencountylegalclinic@verizon.net. or 413-733-6500.


The Hampden County Bar Association received an IOLTA Grant from the Massachusetts Bar Foundation in the amount of $59,000 for funding of the Hampden County Bar Association's Children's Law Project for the 2012-2013 Grant year. We are very grateful to the Massachusetts Bar Foundation for their continued support of this program. Through this program, children receive legal representation in the Hampden County Family and Probate Court for an array of matters. For more information about the Massachusetts Bar Foundation and the good work they do, check out their website at www.MassBarFoundation.org.


Mass Bar Educational Training HCBA Member Discount

As one of our member benefits, Hampden County Bar Association members are invited to attend Massachusetts Bar Association seminars at a discounted rate.
The MBA is holding a seminar, "Considering, Preparing and Conducting Mediation and Arbitration Hearings", designed for both plaintiff and defense lawyers who engage in mediation and/or arbitration of personal injury claims on Tuesday, February 12, 2013 at Western New England Law School from 4:00-7:00 pm.

Moderator:  Robert H. Astor, Esquire

Panelists:    L. Jeffrey Meehan, Esquire 

                   John P. DiBartolo, Esquire

                   Bruce Patterson, Arbella Mutual Insurance Co. 
For more information, including how to register, click here.

Basic Mediation Training

The Mediation and Training Collaborative is offering acertificate course in basic mediation techniques designed to assist clients deal with conflict.  This practice-based training is a four-session, thirty hour course scheduled for March 1, 9, 15 & 23, 2013 from 9:00am to 5:30pm in Greenfield, MA. CAFL CLEs are available upon request.  Early registration postmarked by February 15, including a $100 non-refundable deposit is $595, and includes a 74 page manual, certificate of completion, refreshments, parking and CLEs if desired.  The fee after February 15 is $625.  For more information including how to register, visit the Community Action website or contact them via email at mediation@communityaction.us or call (413) 475-1505.

St. Thomas More Society Fundraiser

The St. Thomas More Society is holding its 4th Annual Fundraiser on Wednesday, February 20, 2013 at the Majestic Theater.  The performance of "Skin Deep" will be held at 7:30 p.m.  The cafe opens at 6:30 p.m. serving beer, wine and light fare.  For reservations or more information contact (413) 747-7797 or www.majestictheater.com.


No Paid Advertisements this month.

“All paid advertising published in this newsletter in no way constitutes approval or endorsement by the Hampden County Bar Association or by any of its members of the products and/or services advertised.”


February   7, 2013 - How To Series-Estate Gift Income
February 11, 2013 - Practice Development Series/
                                Getting Help Preparing for your First Trial
February 11, 2013 - Housing Court Bench Bar
February 12, 2013 - Hampden County Pro Bono Recognition Lunch
February 12, 2013 - Real Estate Section Lunch
February 15, 2013 - Social Media - LexisNexis
February 22, 2013 - New Lawyers Section Lunch
February 25, 2013 - "Howard Street" Alcohol Center
February 28, 2013 - Bankruptcy Section Lunch
March  4, 2013 - WM Women's Correctional Center
March  6, 2013 - Juvenile Court Bench Bar
March 11, 2013 - Practice Development Series
                            Dealing with Difficult Adversaries
March 14, 2013 - Probate Court Bench Bar
April 2, 2013 - Judges Night
April 8, 2013 - Practice Development Series
                       Business Development, Networking & Marketing
May 16, 2013 - HCBA Golf Outing-SAVE THE DATE!
June 13, 2013 - HCBA Annual Meeting-SAVE THE DATE!


The following is a list of Hampden County Judges' assignments through the end of the month. Please note that these assignments are subject to change without notice.

Hampden County Superior Court

2/11 - 2/15 Kinder, Sweeney, Ford, Page, Josephson, Carey, Ferrara
2/19 - 2/22 Kinder, Sweeney, Ford, Page, Josephson, Carey, Ferrara
2/25 - 3/01 Kinder, Sweeney, Ford, Page, Josephson, Carey, Ferrara

Hampden County Probate Court

2/4 Crawford, Fuller, Geoffrion, Hyland, Rainaud
2/5 Crawford, Fuller, Geoffrion, Rainaud
2/6 Crawford, Fuller, Geoffrion,
2/7 Crawford, Fuller, Geoffrion
2/8 Crawford, Fuller, Geoffrion, Hyland

2/11 Hyland, Rainaud, Sacks
2/12 Crawford, Geoffrion, Rainaud, Sacks
2/13 Crawford, Fuller, Sacks
2/14 Crawford, Fuller, Sacks
2/15 Fuller, Hyland, Sacks

2/18 No Assignment
2/19 Crawford, Fuller (1/2 day), Rainaud
2/20 Crawford, Fuller, Geoffrion
2/21 Crawford, Fuller, Geoffrion
2/22 Fuller, Hyland

2/25 Fuller, Hyland, Rainaud
2/26 Fuller, Geoffrion, Rainaud, Sacks
2/27 Fuller, Sacks
2/28 Crawford, Fuller, Geoffrion, Rainaud, Sacks

Springfield District Court

2/4 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hurley, Poehler, Region 5 Judge
2/5 Beattie, Gordon, Hadley, Hurley, Murphy, Poehler
2/6 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hadley, Hurley, Mason, Poehler
2/7 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hadley, Hurley, Mason, Poehler
2/8 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hadley, Hurley, Murphy, Poehler

2/11 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Groce, Hadley, Hurley, Poehler
2/12 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Groce, Hadley, Hurley, Poehler
2/13 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hadley, Hurley, Mason, Poehler
2/14 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hadley, Koenigs, Mason, Poehler
2/15 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Groce, Koenigs, Murphy, Vrebal

2/18 No Assignment
2/19 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Groce, Hadley, Hurley, Poehler
2/20 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon (am), Hadley, Hurley, Mason
2/21 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hadley, Hurley, Koenigs, Poehler
2/22 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hurley Poehler

2/25 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hadley, Hurley, Poehler
2/26 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hadley, Hurley, Koenigs, Poehler
2/27 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hadley, Hurley, Mason (am), Poehler
2/28 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hadley, Mulcahy (am), Poehler

3/1 Beattie, Boyle, Gordon, Hurly, Murphy, Payne

Palmer District Court

2/4 Groce
2/5 Mulcahy
2/6 Groce
2/7 Region 5 Judge (pm)
2/8 Region 5 Judge

2/11 Mulcahy
2/12 Mulcahy
2/13 Mulcahy
2/14 Mulcahy (pm)
2/15 Mulcahy

2/18 No Assignment
2/19 Mulcahy
2/20 Groce
2/21 Groce
2/22 Groce

2/25 Mulcahy
2/26 Mulcahy
2/27 Murphy
2/28 Mulcahy (pm)

3/1 Mulcahy

Westfield District Court

2/4 Koenigs
2/5 Koenigs
2/6 Contant, Koenigs
2/7 Contant, Koenigs
2/8 Contant, Koenigs

2/11 Contant (pm)
2/12 Contant
2/13 Contant, Murphy
2/14 Contant, Non-Region 6 Judge
2/15 Contant

2/18 No Assignment
2/19 Contant
2/20 Contant
2/21 Contant
2/22 Vrabel

2/25 Contant (pm)
2/26 Contant
2/27 Mulcahy
2/28 Contant

3/1 Contant

Chicopee District Court

2/4 Mason
2/5 Mason
2/6 Payne
2/7 Murphy

2/8 Mason

2/11 Mason
2/12 Mason
2/13 Groce
2/14 Mason
2/15 Mason

2/18 No Assignment
2/19 Mason (pm)
2/20 Vrabel
2/21 Mason
2/22 Mason

2/25 Groce,  Mason
2/26 Mason
2/27 MacLeod
2/28 Groce, MacLeod

3/1 Groce

Holyoke District Court 

2/4 Connly, McLeod
2/5 Connly, MacLeod
2/6 Ross, Walsh
2/7 Groce, MacLeod, Walsh
2/8 MacLeod, Walsh

2/11 Murphy, Walsh
2/12 Murphy, Walsh
2/13 MacLeod, Walsh
2/14 Groce, MacLeod (am), Walsh
2/15 Connly, Payne

2/18 No Assignment
2/19 Murphy, Walsh
2/20 Connly, Poehler
2/21 MacLeod, Poehler (am)
2/22 Murphy, Walsh

2/25 MacLeod, Walsh
2/26 Murphy, Walsh
2/27 Connly, Walsh
2/28 Connly, Walsh

3/1 MacLeod, Walsh

Springfield Juvenile Court

2/4 Dunbar, Belsky,Eaton, Phillips
2/5 Belsky, Eaton, Phillips
2/6 Dunbar, Belsky, Eaton
2/7 Swords, Dunbar, Eaton
2/8 Belsky, Phillips

2/11 Belsky, Phillips
2/12 Belsky, Eaton, Phillips
2/13 Belsky, Eaton
2/14 Belsky, Eaton
2/15 Eaton, Phillips

2/18 No Assignment
2/19 Swords, Belsky, Phillips
2/20 Dunbar, Belsky, Eaton
2/21 Dunbar, Eaton, Phillips
2/22 Swords, Belsky, Phillips

2/25 Dunbar, Belsky, Eaton, Phillips
2/26 Dunbar, Belsky, Eaton, Phillips
2/27 Dunbar, Belsky, Eaton
2/28 Dunbar, Belsky, Eaton

3/1 Belsky, Eaton,Phillips

Holyoke Juvenile Court

2/4 Locke
2/5 No Assignment
2/6 Locke
2/7 Phillips
2/8 Locke

2/11 Eaton
2/12 No Assignment
2/13 No Assignment
2/14 Phillips
2/15 Belsky

2/18 No Assignment
2/19 No Assignment
2/20 Locke
2/21 Phillips
2/22 Locke

2/25 Locke
2/26 No Assignment
2/27 Locke
2/28 Phillips

  3/1 Locke

Western Housing Court

2/11  Fein in Northampton
2/12  Fein, Fields (out @ 11am)
2/13  Fields in Pittsfield (am), Spfld. (pm)
2/14  Fields
2/15  Fein in Greenfield, Fields

2/19  Fein
2/20  Fein in Pittsfield
2/21  Crampton-Kamukala
2/22  Fein (no judge in Greenfield)

2/25  Fields, Fein in Northampton
2/26  Fields
2/27  Fein, Fields in Pittsfield
2/28  Fields