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Steven R. Ballard
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Steven Ballard’s Answers

108 total


  • My child is being questioned at school by dcf without my consent or without me present.

    Dcf got a report on sexual abuse not against a parent in the home but another individual. They questioned my child at school without my knowledge. Is this legal?

    Steven’s Answer

    As Attorneys Karpf and Golden correctly suggest, this current practice by the DCF has not been specifically prohibited and the DCF is currently getting away with this. However, as Attorney Michael Rich has also very eloquently stated, it is an open question whether this really is or should be deemed legal, and I agree with him that it is not and should not be deemed legal (well, he tends to agree it should be deemed illegal, whereas I strongly believe it should be declared illegal). See my further comments in response to Attorney Rich's excellent post above.

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  • Can anyone recommend a reduced rate or pro bono lawyer for a civil case regarding child support? (Canton Probate Court)?

    The case is scheduled for trial on October 17th and I have been representing myself until now. I am going to loose our house if I loose child support. I am owed arrearages of $3500 which I would be willing to pay a lawyer if he/she could help me...

    Steven’s Answer

    As you already have a trial date set, it might be too late, but if you have no income and are on disability, you might be able to get some help from a legal services agency. You can find all of them, and do a search by zip code, at http://www.masslegalservices.org.

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  • Walgreens gave wrong painkiller dosage. Is it worth getting a lawyer?

    I was prescribed Nucynta and had it filled at Walgreens. They posted on the bottle "Take 4 pills every 4 - 6 hours." I took 8 painkillers in 5 hours. That was 6 too many. I called Walgreens and asked about the dosage. They were shocked to hear the...

    Steven’s Answer

    I stand by my statement, but I do agree with the other attorneys here that it would be a good idea to get a consultation with a personal injury lawyer. They are free, and only if they believe you have a good chance of recovery of some kind of settlement, will they take you on as a client. They will be able better to assess the facts of your case, and direct you on how to proceed to determine if you have any real injury as a result of this apparent mistake.

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  • Walgreens gave wrong painkiller dosage. Is it worth getting a lawyer?

    I was prescribed Nucynta and had it filled at Walgreens. They posted on the bottle "Take 4 pills every 4 - 6 hours." I took 8 painkillers in 5 hours. That was 6 too many. I called Walgreens and asked about the dosage. They were shocked to hear the...

    Steven’s Answer

    From what you have said, it doesn't sound like you "have a case" - that is you don't have a case worth pursuing if you are looking to be compensated for some kind of loss. And I am assuming that Walgreens was indeed solely to blame for causing you to take too high of a dosage of the pain medication. If there is some lasting harm as the result of having taken too much, and you find you need medical attention again, then revisit this. But probably, you should just forget about this, and be careful in the future to check for the proper dosage on your own.

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  • Real estate laws

    Hello, I live in Massachusetts and me and my ex-fiance have had a falling out and we are done. We have joint bank accts and share a house together. We are both on the mortgage and the deed. I cannot live with her anymore and I want the house. I ha...

    Steven’s Answer

    What does she want to do exactly? You have told us what you want to do. I feel like you may have a specific question here, but you haven't really asked it.

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  • How i can get help frm embassy

    my in laws took my 24 gram gold jewlery and also all my dowery and now i have been in usa three years they opened all my sauitcase and took every thing also my jewlery i gave to me husband but he gave to his mother now they are refusing it i dont ...

    Steven’s Answer

    Hello again. It seems apparent that you have failed to follow the good advice, from several of us here, in answer to your numerous questions, to get a divorce attorney. My advice is still the same. I would add that based on your language, both here and in your other questions, Avvo will be of little use to you. It is like banging your head up against the wall.

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  • I am a landlord evicting tennant for non-payment in MA. I served 14 day and summart process. The tennant's attorney sent me

    today: 1. Anwser and counterclaim 2. Demand for disovery 3. Defendant's request for production 4. Interrogatories Propounded by the defendant. My question is if I must reply to all? The 2. 3. 4. are a stand...

    Steven’s Answer

    In general, tenants do have the right to send discovery requests to landlords who have sued for eviction, including requests for production of documents, and interrogatories. You will need to do your best to answer those requests. It is best to get a lawyer if you can do so, as the lawyer would be able to help you answer these questions and respond to these documents requests, and might help you to respond with specific objections to requests if they are vague, overbroad, or otherwise objectionable.

    You really should seek help from a lawyer, preferably one who practices housing law, and specifically landlord-tenant law and one who represents landlords. The lawyer will be able to advise you whether or not, and how, to negotiate with your tenant, and how to handle your case from this point forward. Good luck.

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  • My divorce decree states that child support will end at age 23 as long as she is enrolled in post secondary school or college.

    My daughter is 22 years old and is attending a Law school in MA. My ex-husband stopped paying his child support to the DOR. My daughter is fully depended on me financially and I currently pay all her Medical insurances. Will a Judge rule in my f...

    Steven’s Answer

    Attorney Mason has answered your question, but I will try to answer it in another way, to give you an understanding of the law that has informed your particular agreement, which is common in Massachusetts.

    The statute on which extending child support beyond the age of 18, and up to 23, makes it clear that the objective is to require divorced parents, if the court orders child support to be extended beyond age 18, as is commonly done here in Massachusetts, it is to support dependent children who through graduation from college, whenever that occurs, but in no event beyond the age of 23. See my excerpt from the relevant statute below - the sentence that is most relevant to your question, from the statutory law that underlies and informs the agreement you have apparently made (very common in divorce agreements here in Massachusetts), is the following (from M.G.L. Chapter 208, Section 28):

    "....The court may make appropriate orders of maintenance, support and education for any child who has attained age twenty-one but who has not attained age twenty-three, if such child is domiciled in the home of a parent, and is principally dependent upon said parent for maintenance due to the enrollment of such child in an educational program, excluding educational costs beyond an undergraduate degree...."

    If you read the entire statute (see link below) you will see that medical insurance is also covered there. The short answer is, then, that child support and medical insurance are obligations that extend through the completion of college, but not beyond that for graduate school or professional school, and up to the age of 23 at the latest. I am pretty confident that your Separation Agreement (divorce agreement) has language consistent with this law. So neither you nor your ex-spouse should be obligated to support your daughter, through paying her health insurance or in any other way, now that she is in law school (attendance in law school of course means one has already graduated from college). Your ongoing support would thus be voluntary on your part.

    You would only have a claim against your ex-husband, then, if he owes back support, for the time up until your daughter was considered emancipated, i.e. when she graduated from college.

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  • If I submit a FOIA completed by the Office of Inspector General to a Federal District Court is there a law or presedent that

    requires the judge to consider it or can he just ignore it and grant summery judgment? If so where may I find this item.

    Steven’s Answer

    Here you are yet again. Your repeated questions in this forum demonstrate that you have lost a case in federal district court and that you are upset with your own lawyer, the lawyer for the other side, and the judge. You want to fight them all and also appeal to the court of appeals, all without a lawyer, and without the ability to think and write clearly. You may well have derived some comfort from asking questions and venting here - all the while scoffing at the very good advice you have received. But really by now you have made it clear that probably what you most desperately need is to find a way to accept your losses and move on with your life. For that you will need to look elsewhere. That is not really a legal problem.

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  • If a defence attorney deliberatly enters into collusion with his client to sweep damaging material facts under the carpet by way

    of refusing to acknowedge or address them in his motion for summery judgment is he guilty of violating some hypocratic oath like doctors have? I mean, at what point does the attorney become an accessory to the client's crime?

    Steven’s Answer

    Here you are yet again. Your repeated questions in this forum demonstrate that you have lost a case in federal district court and that you are upset with your own lawyer, the lawyer for the other side, and the judge. You want to fight them all and also appeal to the court of appeals, all without a lawyer, and without the ability to think and write clearly. You may well have derived some comfort from asking questions and venting here - all the while scoffing at the very good advice you have received. But really by now you have made it clear that probably what you most desperately need is to find a way to accept your losses and move on with your life. For that you will need to look elsewhere. That is not really a legal problem.

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