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Jeffrey K. Varszegi

Jeffrey Varszegi’s Answers

439 total


  • Can and/or will DA office prosecute a Mass 209A violation if the victim refuse to testify? Is legal representation necessary?

    I had an argument with my wife and in a struggle to exit the apartment, I grab my wife's hand and left some bruise marks. The police was involved and I was arrested under Mass 209A. In the police report, my wife stated she didn't want me arreste...

    Jeffrey’s Answer

    Sure, the DA's office can always decide to go forward with a case, though nothing's certain. Note that the alleged Chapter 209A violation would be a crime distinct from any alleged assault and battery. You are likely going to face at least two charges.

    If an allegedly victimized spouse asserts her marital privilege against testimony, sometimes a dismissal can be achieved early on in an assault and battery case. In addition there is something called an Accord and Satisfaction, essentially an agreement between the alleged victim and the accused, which can be used to dismiss A&B cases under some circumstances.

    However, where there is evidence of injury, where statements of the allegedly victimized spouse during or after the event might tend to incriminate the accused and fall within a hearsay exception, and where other evidence such as eyewitness testimony might help achieve a conviction, the prosecution will be more likely to want to proceed, and to oppose attempts to dismiss the case. It's unclear whether the case is totally free of such complications, but if so, you might have a decent chance at a dismissal.

    However, the huge complication in your case is that the events occurred in the context of an alleged 209A violation. The prosecution will have an elevated sense of duty to protect the alleged victim and public in such cases.

    The chance of a conviction on the Chapter 209A violation will depend, of course, on the terms of the 209A. If the terms of the 209A included no-contact or stay-away provisions, then just being in your wife's presence could result in a quite easy to prove violation, really an open-and-shut case.

    I'd always recommend the help of an attorney in a criminal case of just alleged assault and battery, and even more so with a case involving an alleged 209A violation. Everything you say can be used against you, there's a possibility of a conviction on one or more charges, and you seem to have little inkling of just what you're facing. Speak to no one about your case until you have spoken with a defense attorney.

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  • Can I evict my section 8 tenant who is currently a tenant at will for Use and Occupancy using a 30 Day Notice?

    The lease has expired with my section 8 tenant. Since the expiration my tenant has stayed and section 8 and the tenant are still paying rent. I want them out to move a family member in but my expired lease had language in it that was required in...

    Jeffrey’s Answer

    I urge you to heed Attorney Vaughn-Martel's advice. It will likely be cheaper and much quicker in the long run to hire an attorney to deal with this eviction.

    The case law of evictions is rife with dismissals based on technical grounds, and HUD regulations are fertile territory for finding such grounds. In addition, your misuse of the term "use and occupancy" (which in Massachusetts means money accepted for the use and occupancy of a dwelling that is nevertheless under some circumstances not considered to be rent) means, frankly, that you are far out of your depth.

    Good luck. Note that Attorney Vaughn-Martel's firm is headquartered right in Boston, and handles landlord-tenant law.

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  • Can statements made by the judge in a civil case (258e) be used in my upcoming clerks hearing (criminal) for an a&b?

    At a recent 258e hearing (I was the defendant; my ex took out a 258e against me after I filed a 209a against him), the judge ruled in my favor and stated that the plaintiffs testimony did not have credit. One of the three alleged "willful & malic...

    Jeffrey’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    You should do your best to present whatever facts from the 258E hearing will help you. At least get a certified copy of the complaint, affidavit and docket sheet and bring them with you to the hearing.

    With regard to what actually happened at the 10-day hearing and the initial ex parte hearing, you can request a copy of the recording of either or both hearings at the district court. You can then get a transcript made of that recording at extra expense, and if time is an issue the creation of the transcript can be expedited, hopefully resulting in a transcript by the clerk's hearing. If not, you can try getting permission to play the recording itself, and simply talk about what happened at the hearing. Simply presenting the docket sheet with the dismissal could be helpful if the alleged grounds for the 258E formed part of the same events giving rise to the A&B case.

    You should have an attorney for your criminal case, and he or she should be retained before the clerk's hearing. Anything you say at the clerk's hearing could be used against you. Perhaps more importantly, your chance of getting a dismissal at the clerk's hearing will go up, and even if not an attorney will probably do a much better job of cross-examining any witnesses and evidence against you, which may be very helpful in getting a dismissal later. Failing to retain an attorney now would be "penny wise and pound foolish".

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  • Was on maternity leave and got discharged can i still get unemployment

    called on my 5 weeks of my leave n was already out of the payroll system

    Jeffrey’s Answer

    Yes, you can get unemployment benefits, as long as you meet the eligibility requirements (available for and actively seeking work, etc.). I would also see an employment attorney about the circumstances of your discharge, to make sure it was lawful, if you have any questions on that front at all.

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  • Child support

    I just wanted to know that we have coming court date coming for child support, can i gave written statement to the judge regarding my husband income and also witness, and also my brother drving taxi and if i state that he and my ex husband both in...

    Jeffrey’s Answer

    Certain documents can be introduced as evidence, but the requirements for doing so vary according to the context and type of document. In general, a written statement by a person who could have, but did not, appear as a witness will tend not to be admitted by a court, absent special circumstances such as needing to ensure safety of a person or well-being of a child.

    Thus if the statement you refer to would just relate that your (ex?) husband is working and making a certain income, you would be better off getting that person to agree to appear in court for you, and/or subpoenaing them as necessary. If your brother has personal knowledge as to your husband's work habits and income, call him as a witness.

    Based on your lack of understanding of these issues and the difficulty in reading your post, I think it would be helpful to discuss these issues with an attorney, even if you can't afford to hire one right now. Speak with the Lawyer for the Day at the family courthouse, go for one or more consultations with attorneys in your area, and read up on child support issues as much as you can. You may find this website very helpful:
    http://www.masslegalhelp.org/children-and-families/child-support

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  • Can my son's father get joint custody of my child?

    my son's "father" had his other child taken from him, can he still get custody?

    Jeffrey’s Answer

    Based on what you've written, I doubt that your son's father would be able to initially win joint physical or legal (decision-making) custody, assuming that evidence of these matters is correctly presented. The main question would probably be the extent to which he might be able to win supervised visitation. If your son's father files a paternity and custody action, I'd speak with an attorney immediately. In the meantime make sure to maintain and adhere to a comprehensive safety plan.

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  • I was arrested for larceny over $250 & am curious of the penalties I may be facing.

    I've never been arrested before and this was shoplifting at a supermarket.

    Jeffrey’s Answer

    The possible penalties range up to a $1,000 fine and 2.5 years in jail. You should under no circumstances deal with any criminal charges without the help of your own attorney, and should discuss the case with no one else.

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  • Can you get an enullment after you've been divorced ?

    Told my divorce attorney that after a 13 year marriage. I found out my husband was only seperated from his prior wife.Technically his divorce was not finalized til 3 weeks after we married.

    Jeffrey’s Answer

    You should be able to, but you should start by filing a motion to open the judgment first, under Massachusetts Rule of Domestic Relations Procedure 60:
    http://www.lawlib.state.ma.us/source/mass/rules/dom/dom60.html

    Grounds for your motion would include the discovery of the new evidence that your marriage was void. Then you can file for the annulment. An attorney would probably be helpful in drafting the motion and filing for the annulment, and I recommend at least a consultation. However, based on what you've written, it will probably be fairly easy to follow through and prove you're entitled to the annulment.

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  • What is considered an illegal notice to quit and if so, can I have the eviction dismissed if it's illegal?

    I received a notice to quit "in the mailbox" also the letter does not specify date of termination other than I have a month to vacate the premises. I believe this to be illegal handled because it was not given to me directly or sent via certifi...

    Jeffrey’s Answer

    A summary process notice to quit doesn't have to be given to you directly or sent by certified mail. Often, if given to a process server, that person will leave a copy at the last and usual place of abode, then follow up with a copy by mail, but no specific method of delivery is necessary. A landlord can deliver the notice themselves or through a third party, in person or by mail, etc.

    In some circumstances an eviction case can be dismissed by lack of proof of delivery of the notice to quit, but here you've stated that you actually received the notice. Unless you didn't receive it in enough time to give the required period of notice (generally 14 days for nonpayment, 30 days otherwise) lack of timely delivery will not be a valid defense for you, especially since you would have to testify truthfully as to actual receipt.

    Technical defects in the notice to quit can give rise to eviction defenses; many cases get dismissed on such grounds. However, the failure to state an exact date of termination is not necessarily grounds for dismissal. With regard to the date of termination, it must be what's called a "date certain", but that may be specified in general language as long as it's clear and unequivocal. For instance, in one case a notice to quit was found to be valid though it specified the termination date as "at the end of the next month of your tenancy beginning after this notice". Since a major requirement of a 30-day notice is that the tenancy must terminate on a rent day, sometimes landlord-tenant attorneys (or landlords) will use general language in their notices, terminating a tenancy at the end of the next rental period, to make sure that there is never an error.

    I believe Greater Boston Legal Services runs an eviction clinic where you could show your notice to quit to someone and have them assess whether it's legal or not, and potentially help you find other defenses as well. You can also get free brief advice at the Lawyer for the Day table at the Boston Housing Court. The website masslegalhelp.org also has a very good housing section, where you can learn more about possible eviction defenses. Good luck.

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