Rory J. Gill’s Answers

Rory J. Gill

Boston Real Estate Attorney.

Contributor Level 4
  1. Can my landlord remove my personal property and throwing them away without telling me, and while I'm not home?

    Answered over 2 years ago.

    1. Rory J. Gill
    2. John Michael Phillips
    3. Christopher Daniel Leroi
    3 lawyer answers

    From what you've said here, your landlord did violate some fairly basic landlord-tenant laws. Depending on how exactly this happened, I see a series of possible violations - trespass, interference with your "right to quiet enjoyment" of your property, theft, and maybe others. The severity of his wrongdoing depends on: - whether he had to enter your home to take down the lights - whether he had permission to enter the premises - whether the lights were in a common area (if it's a...

    4 lawyers agreed with this answer

  2. Are the proceeds of the sale of my home protected from a creditors lien under the Homestead Act?

    Answered over 2 years ago.

    1. Rory J. Gill
    2. Thomas J Callahan
    3. Aaron H. Hutchins
    3 lawyer answers

    You are correct. If you sell the property, up to $500,000 of proceeds will be sheltered by the Declaration of Homestead until you buy a new residence or one year passes. The specific law that applies is Massachusetts General Laws chapter 188, section 11(a)(1), available online at http://www.malegislature.gov/Laws/GeneralLaws/PartII/TitleI/Chapter188/Section11

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  3. I hired a roofer who put a dumpster on my property, the roofer was paid in full. The dumpster co wants to put a lien on prop.

    Answered over 2 years ago.

    1. Rory J. Gill
    1 lawyer answer

    From the information you've provided, it looks like the dumpster company can place a mechanic's lien on the property. Subcontractors - like the dumpster company - can place mechanic's liens on property just like a contractor could who was directly hired by you. The catch for the subcontractors is that they must notify you (the owner) of the lien BEFORE they furnish the materials or provide the labor secured by the lien. N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 447:5. That notice must include the amount...

    2 lawyers agreed with this answer

  4. What is the proper organization of a condo board of trustees in Massachusetts

    Answered almost 2 years ago.

    1. Jefferson W. Boone
    2. Rory J. Gill
    2 lawyer answers

    I echo the previous answer. The possible consequences of deliberate mismanagement are really obvious. So, as an owner, you have two possible courses of action - one political and one legal. The political solution, replacing the trustees, would be the best solution in the long-term. It would allow responsible trustees to manage the budget, rules, maintenance, and fee collections. How exactly this is done varies by condo. Look at your condominium's Declaration of Trust for more...

    1 lawyer agreed with this answer

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  5. How can my title company compel a second mortgage holder to respond to certified request to discharge a second Mortgage?

    Answered almost 2 years ago.

    1. John F. Skinner III
    2. Rory J. Gill
    2 lawyer answers

    I would be interested to learn some more details - especially as to why the title insurer's attorney has not attempted a "Discharge by Affidavit," under Mass. General Laws ch. 183, Sections 54 or 55. Depending on the facts, that attorney could be correct to wait for a traditional discharge. However, there is an alternate way to discharge mortgages if the lender is non-responsive. If the lender does not respond to a discharge with 30 days of receipt by certified mail, as required, the...

    1 lawyer agreed with this answer

  6. Can my landlord evict me cause she wants to move in

    Answered over 2 years ago.

    1. Rory J. Gill
    1 lawyer answer

    It depends. If you have a lease, you have the right to stay until the lease expires. Whatever the lease says (within reason) rules. If you are a tenant-at-will or renting on a month-to-month basis (meaning that there's no set end date for the lease), she likely can force you to move. It takes some time, but she can. See if you can agree with the new landlord on a reasonable date to move out. If that's acceptable, you can probably handle that on your own. If you really want to fight...

    1 lawyer agreed with this answer

  7. Early termination of lease, landlord is not responding in writing, what can I do?

    Answered over 2 years ago.

    1. Rory J. Gill
    2. Thomas J Callahan
    2 lawyer answers

    To answer your question, I need to make an assumption - that you have a written lease with this landlord and that it contains standard provisions. Most leases, by their own terms, require all changes - including early terminations - to be in writing. So, I would try to get a written confirmation from the landlord. Without a written agreement to let you off the hook, you risk owing the landlord for rent during any vacancies, the costs of finding a new tenant (usually a broker fee), and any...

    1 lawyer agreed with this answer

  8. I live in a condo and the deck needs to be replaced. The association wants to pass deck ownership onto the owners. Recourse?

    Answered almost 2 years ago.

    1. Thomas J Callahan
    2. Rory J. Gill
    3. Erik Hammarlund
    3 lawyer answers

    I agree, largely, with Attorney Callahan. A modification to the definition of private and common spaces requires an amendment to your Master Deed. The terms of the Master Deed itself dictate how amendments are made. In most cases, though, a supermajority of owners (2/3 or 3/4) is required to make the change. If the supermajority support exists to make the deck ownership changes, the procedural requirements have been met by the association. However, you're not out of luck. Generally,...

  9. Is it legal for MA residential condominium unit owners to not be allowed to install their own washers and dryers?

    Answered over 2 years ago.

    1. Kati M. Amarantes
    2. Rory J. Gill
    2 lawyer answers

    The condo association, through its trustees, has the right to prohibit in-unit laundry installations. To legally ban them, however, the rule must have been properly adopted and communicated to the unit owners. If the rule is found in the recorded condo documents, it is most likely valid. It doesn't end there, though. In order to enforce the rule, the association cannot "waive" it. That means, a condo association must enforce rules consistently, evenly, and fairly. If the association has...