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Michael L Rich

Child abuse Attorney at Waltham, MA

4.9   14 reviews
  • Licensed for 44 years
    State MA
    Acquired 1979
    Active No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Michael

Learn Michael’s areas of practice.

Practice areas

I concentrate my practice in Children's and Family Law, especially child abuse and neglect defense, DSS, DCF, 51As, care and protections, termination of parental rights, guardianships, students' rights, special education, school discipline, expulsion, foster care, guardianship, adoption. Consultant and staff trainer in child abuse and neglect reporting practices and liability prevention. Also delinquency and criminal defense and CHINS cases.  More at .


Law Office of Michael L. Rich
32 Middlesex Circle
Unit 5
Waltham, MA, 02452


4.9 / 5.0
  14 customer reviews
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1 Star
Posted by anonymous | March 26, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Mike Rescued Our Family
Mike's help was crucial it getting our family through a difficult time. We had a case opened at DCF--an organization that has broad administrative powers and little oversight--during a difficult time for my son. Another lawyer told me there was nothing I could do except follow DCF's requests. Mike was much more helpful. He told us all of our options and the associated risks. We worked out a plan going forward, and he implemented it to perfection: today we are free and clear of DCF involvement. This has been an enormous relief to my son who is suffering from anxiety, as well as my wife and me. I am glad we found Mike; I would recommend him to anyone in a similar position.
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Response from Michael Rich March 29, 2016
Thanks for posting this review. It was a pleasure working with you and your family. Best wishes for a DCF-free future and that the agencies you are working with help more instead of hindering your son's progress going forward.
Posted by Andreea | January 19, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Thoroughness, Compassion, Professionalism!
Mike was referred by a friend. From the beginning he was very compassionate and caring and understood my case. I can't even describe the scary moments when you get the DSS/DCF call. That is nothing compared to the thorough interview they complete. You will feel like you have no privacy whatsoever. You will feel that your kids can be taken away any minute, for the most stupid and simple reason ever, reported by people that don't even know you. Well, throughout the whole DCF in-person interaction, I always felt safe when Mike was around because I knew I had someone that believed in me and was there to protect my family. I wish no real parent in this world goes through those moments but if you see yourself there, I would not even make a call to DCF without hiring Mike!
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Posted by ns | February 8, 2015
Excellent DCF attorney
If you are dealing w/ the DCF at any stage, having Michael by your side will not only bring peace of mind but you will also be ensured of a successful outcome depending on your situation. He is truly a professional. For him clients come first, even when he was on vacation he was making sure to check email and was communicating with us and DCF regarding our case. He navigated our 51A investigation to a successful outcome and was always on top of his game. I would hire him again without reservation and so should you.
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Response from Michael Rich February 11, 2015
Thanks, ns. I am very pleased that we achieved a successful outcome in your case and greatly appreciate your positive review. I must point out that I cannot ensure anyone a successful outcome but will work zealously to try to accomplish that for anyone I represent.
Posted by John S | September 11, 2014
Prompt, relevant & informative help!
Michael made time to provide me with specific details about interpretation and application of legal statutes surrounding injuries from child abuse that occurred many years ago. His guidance and direction were helpful and enabled me to move forward by following his direction and recommendations. I am grateful to him for his time and outstanding assistance.
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Posted by Mr. & Mrs. N. & D. S. | April 13, 2014
Michael is a true professional. He helped us navigate a 51A to successful closure in a highly complex case. He is very knowledgeable and compassionate and works like a true partner with his clients guiding them to make the right choices and decisions. He is hard working and always on top of things. With Michael on our side, we felt that a successful outcome was guaranteed from day one. Highly recommend hiring him if you are dealing w/ DCF at any stage of the process
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Posted by AMAECHI | August 5, 2012
Posted by Beverly | May 23, 2010
The Best In the Businesss
After going throug 2 other attorney's, I found Mr. Rich. He has the tenacity of a bull and the integrity to match, yet the cool, brilliance, knowledge and skill that is as wise as a serpent but stings like a bee. I was in an uphill battle after having had misguided counsel and as a result of his hard work and efforts, I won. He knows how to deal effectively with DCF. There is none better. I only wish that I had him on my case from the beginning. He's the best!
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Posted by anonymous | February 28, 2009
Excellence in results, experience, sensitivity & jurisprudence
My wife and me had the good fortune of being refered to attorney Rich when we were struggling to find representation for a very complicated, interstate family court matter. Due to Michael's expertise, reputation, and collegiate networking, our case was handled quickly, precisely, with results much more easily than we anticipated. We were impressed with the level of respect, empathy, and knowledge Michael demonstrated during the course of our litigation. We highly recommend attorney Rich to anyone seeking compassionate council with a results oriented approach. Neil Mulligan Business Development Specialist
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Posted by anonymous | January 19, 2009
Excellent advocate
When I was looking for a lawyer, Michael Rich was the only person I found who didn't treat me automatically as scum for having run afoul of DSS. He kept me well informed about my options, respected and listened to my suggestions when I had them, and kept things progressing when I was too overwhelmed to contribute any input. Ultimately, he was able to overturn a DSS decision in court for me. I'm still amazed that anyone could beat a system as stacked as DSS is, but Michael Rich can and did!
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Posted by anonymous | January 13, 2009
Atty. Michael Rich is an honest man with integrity and knowledge
It has been great to work with Attorney Michael Rich. He is a consummate professional and I would highly recommend him as legel counsel. He also has a very informative easy to peruse web-site.
Posted by anonymous | January 8, 2009
Attorney Michael L. Rich, MA DSS Case, Client Review
Michael L. Rich, Esq. is recommended in the highest degree possible. Our family came to Mike Rich by way of recommendation both through research and word of mouth. Attorney Rich represented us in a matter involving The Dept. of Social Services (MA), and our family. Being unfamiliar with, unaccustomed to "the system" we were very concerned, and had a feeling of of being small and powerless versus a system that was leviathan. Not only did Attny. Michael Rich inform us of and vigorously represent and defend our rights, he did so with greatest degree of professional skill combined with a principiled personal touch that gave us relief and security, and a position of justice. Attorney Rich kept in regular communication with us, kept us entirely informed regarding all matters, including options, costs, and case history in such matters pertinent to our case. And Attny Rich did so in a timely, responsive way. Our case was resolved to our satisfaction, justly, in a reasonable time frame.
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Posted by anonymous | January 6, 2009
Michael is a real down to earth lawyer - who gets the job done well!
Michael worked with me on a case that was very emotional. He was compassionate, meeting with myself and family members. He resolved a bad situation in a quick and efficient manner and his help made what was a very difficult time in my life manageble. Thanks Michael Rich!
Posted by anonymous | January 6, 2009
DCF Attorney
Attorney Rich actually works for the money! He is thorough, honest, dependable and never rude to his clients. He was able to help our family through a horrible encounter with the DSS (now DCF). His quiet, calm approach put us at ease and made it possible to gain positive attention for our family without a lot of tension and fanfare. He knew exactly what path to take in the form of experts and gave us solid advice that worked. We can not thank him enough for his diligence.
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Posted by Amanda Ellason | December 17, 2016
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Very helpful and very caring and nice
He wasn't my lawyer but he still gave me pretty good advice and looked out for me when he didn't have to. He also answered my questions very quickly. If I lived in his area I would probably hire him.
Response from Michael Rich December 22, 2016
Thanks for posting this review. I am glad the timing worked out for me to be able to have the back-and-forth we did. I hope you were able to hire a local attorney to move your case forward.
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  • Free Consultation 15 minutes
  • Hourly Rates $ 180-330 per hour
  • Retainer Always
Payment methods
Cash, Check, Credit Card


AVVO RATING 8.3 (Excellent)

Work Experience

  • Mentor
  • Children and Family Law Program, MA Committee for Public Counsel Services
  • 1995 - Present
  • Attorney
  • Law Office of Michael L. Rich
  • 1982 - Present
  • Staff Attorney
  • Northeast Kentucky Legal Services
  • 1979 - 1982


  • Northeastern University School of Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1979
  • City College of the City University of New York
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 1976


  • Restorative Justice Task Team of the Massachusetts Conference of the United Church of Christ
  • Chair
  • 2000 - 2013

Honors and Awards

  • Reginald Heber Smith Community Lawyer Fellowship
  • Howard University
  • 1980
  • Reginald Heber Smith Community Lawyer Fellowship
  • Howard University
  • 1979


Speaking Engagements

  • Experience a Restorative Justice Circle
  • Restorative Justice
  • 2013

Attorney endorsements

Received (30)
Given (15)
Endorse Michael
Unknown Attorney | Feb 20
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Michael is an extremely competent, reasonably-priced lawyer of high ability. You would do well to avail yourself of his services."
Child abuse Attorney | Dec 02
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. I have worked with an have known Attorney Rich for many years. Attorney Rich is an outstanding advocate for all his clients."
Child abuse Attorney | Aug 05
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I endorse this lawyer. He is a gentleman and a scholar..."
Child abuse Attorney | May 26
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Mr. Rich practices at the standard of excellence and caring that exemplifies the best of the legal profession. As a CA certified specialist in the area of child abuse and neglect law, I endorse him as an outstanding choice. This is the lawyer you want when you have these types of legal nightmares to deal with. WM"
Education Attorney | Aug 04
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse one particular aspect of Mr. Rich - his professional courtesy. In the day to day life practice of law, it is not the nasty aggressive attorneys like those on television that normally prevail. It is those attorneys Like Mr. Rich who are well prepared and know how to communicate politely and reasonably with their colleagues who normally prevail. Mr. Rich demonstrates this in answer after answer and should be on any client's "short list" to interview."
Unknown Attorney | Mar 12
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Child abuse Attorney | Apr 20
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"Very thorough and always prepared. I endorse this lawyer."
Family Attorney | Jan 26
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer.I endorse this lawyer. Great source of help with your Family Law concerns!"
Unknown Attorney | Dec 16
Relationship: Other
"No matter what kind of legal issues you face throughout your life, it is important to have an experienced and trustworthy lawyer on your side. This attorney is one."
Child abuse Attorney | Sep 29
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. An extremely talented and well respected attorney in the legal community."
Adoption Attorney | Jul 13
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Family Attorney | Jun 17
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Adoption Attorney | May 14
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"A truly excellent attorney well respected in the legal community. I wholeheartedly recommend him to anyone looking for a lawyer who knows the law and truly cares about protecting the rights of his clients and getting them the most favorable result possible."
Child abuse Attorney | May 01
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. He is very knowledgeable and his legal advice is excellent."
Child abuse Attorney | Apr 25
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Attorney Rich is sensitive, compassionate and knowledgeable. I endorse this lawyer."
Unknown Attorney | Mar 13
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse Mr. Rich. His contributions are insightful and accurate."
Unknown Attorney | Dec 16
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Lawyers who serve the avvo community as much as Mr. Rich are few and far between. It takes passion, concern and dedication to devote so much time. You have my endorsement and kudos."
Family Attorney | Oct 18
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Child abuse Attorney | Sep 30
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Child abuse is a particularly difficult practice area, so there is much to be lauded in a lawyer that dedicates his practice to it. Experienced and knowledgeable--I endorse this lawyer."
Child abuse Attorney | Aug 15
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Mike knows his stuff. He's been dealing with child welfare cases for a long time, and has the expertise which comes with experience."
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