The Boston Bar Association remains committed to continuing to serve our members, the legal profession, the justice system and the Greater Boston community as we face the challenges brought on by the rapid spread of the coronavirus COVID-19. This page will be frequently updated with news and information of importance to the legal community, timely content from BBA Sections and Forums, and resources that are being developed by our partners.

BBA Updates

Thursday, May 16, 2020: Read a Letter from BBA President Christine Netski to Membership here 

Wednesday, May 13, 2020: Introducing BBA Podcasts – Looking for an easier way to access the latest legal updates practice tips? The BBA is pleased to offer a new format for the legal community to stay informed, on-the-go. Available on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

Thursday, May 7, 2020: BBA Files Testimony Urging Action on Releases from Incarceration. Read More.

Thursday, April 30, 2020: BBA Ethics Committee provides guidance on some of the most commonly raised issues for lawyers during this time. Read the Ethics Committee Pandemic Advisory.

Thursday, April 23, 2020: As a member of the COVID Relief Coalition, the BBA is mobilizing volunteers and support from the legal community to assist small businesses and nonprofits access emergency loans and other sources of relief. More info.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020: The BBA sent a letter to the federal Department of Homeland Security, calling on the Acting Secretary to take steps to strengthen the healthcare workforce and to protect non-citizens seeking COVID-19 treatment and benefits from the impact of the #PublicCharge rule. Learn More.

Friday, April 10, 2020: Massachusetts Law Firms, Nonprofits and Government Agencies Launch COVID Relief Coalition for Small Businesses and Nonprofits. The Boston Bar Association is a member of this coalition. Learn More

Thursday, April 2, 2020: BBA President Christine Netski Appoints COVID-19 Crisis Response Working Group – Learn More

Wednesday, April 1, 2020: The Massachusetts Access to Justice Commission has convened a COVID-19 Task Force to identify emergent legal needs of the community and address barriers to justice due to the ongoing health crisis. Former BBA President J.D. Smeallie is the BBA liaison to this Task Force – Learn More

Thursday, March 19, 2020: A Message to Members from BBA President Christine Netski – Read Here

Wednesday, March 11, 2020: An Update from the Boston Bar Association on COVID-19  – Read Here

BBA Resources

NEW! Virtual Hearing Resource Guides for Practitioners and Self-Represented Litigants

UPDATED: BBA Bankruptcy Law Section COVID-19 Resource Guide for Practitioners – View guide

BBA International Law Section COVID-19 Resource Guide for Practitioners – View guide

BBA Immigration Law Section COVID-19 Resource Guide for Practitioners – View guide 

BBA Health Law Section COVID-19 Resource Guide for Practitioners –  View guide 

BBA Privacy, Cybersecurity & Digital Law Section Developed Resource Guide for Practitioners – View guide 

BBA Lawyer Referral Service Fact Sheets:

Upcoming Webinars

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Basics Training
Thursday, July 23, 2020 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM

Environmental Justice, Public Health, and Covid-19
Monday, July 27, 2020 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM

Summer Associate Program Series – A Private Tour of the MFA “Highlights of the Museum Collections”
Tuesday, July 28, 2020 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM

View the BBA Learn Online Library for On-Demand Access to Hundreds of Programs & Materials Covering All Practice Areas and Industry Specialties – Watch Now


Nursing Homes Will See Increased Survey Activity, Stiffer Penalties On Heels of Recent COVID-19 Relief Fund Payments – Seyfarth

PErspectives: Private Equity Industry Insights – Ropes & Gray

Deferring Tax Filings and Payments Amid COVID-19 Emergency – Nutter

PPP Loan Forgiveness: Further Guidance on the Math – Verrill

The U.S. Small Business Administration Releases Additional Paycheck Protection Guidance – Foley Hoag

“Walls Have Ears” (Even Virtual Ones)? Confidentiality And Cyber-Security When Working Remotely – Brown Rudnick

Venture Investing and the Pandemic – Mintz

Remote Meetings for Members – New COVID-19 Relief for Nonprofit Governance – Hemenway & Barnes

B&D Outlines COVID-19 Impacts on Legal System, Business, and Environmental Compliance in Massachusetts – Beverage & Diamond

The CARES Act and the Challenging Rules for Affiliated Employers – Pannone Lopes Devereaux & O’Gara

FDA Issues Guidance on Postmarket Adverse Event Reporting During Pandemics – Morgan Lewis

Tolling of Statutes of Limitations in Massachusetts During COVID-19 Pandemic – Effect, Ethical Pitfalls, and Best Practices  – Nelson Mullins

Employers with 500-10,000 Employees: Some CARES’ Federal Reserve Loans Will Require Committing to Labor Conditions – Greenberg Traurig

Robinson+Cole Attorneys Respond to the Coronavirus Outbreak

CLIENT ALERT: U.S. Department of Labor Updates Q&A on the Families First Coronavirus Response Act – Morgan, Brown, & Joy

Client Alert: Charities, Businesses and Self-Employed Individuals Eligible for Forgivable Loans Under the CARES Act – Casner & Edwards

Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act – Robins Kaplan

CARES Act Provides Payroll Relief and Compensation Restrictions – Skadden

Update for Employers on the First Coronavirus Response Act Effective April 1 – Peabody Arnold

Arent Fox Launches Business Loan Task Force– Arent Fox

COVID-19 Business Stimulus Funding Update: Small Businesses, Large Businesses, Mid-Size Businesses, Nonprofits, and Tax Provisions-Seyfarth

DOL Issues Workplace Poster and Guidance for Employers Regarding Paid Leave Under the FFCRA– Hirsch Roberts Weinstein

Expect Delays in Merger Reviews by FTC and DOJ During COVID-19 Restrictions – Duane Morris

State Restrictions on Non-Essential Business Operations During the COVID-19 Crisis – Locke Lord

Department of Labor Issues New COVID-19 Guidance for Employers – Sugarman Rogers

COVID-19 and the Impact on Construction Projects – Anderson Kreiger

The Coronavirus (COVID-19) Quarantine as a Force Majeure Event– Hinckley Allen

Employers Grapple With Essential Business Designations Resulting From Shelter-In-Place and Shutdown Orders– Fisher Phillips

Client Alert: Hotel and Restaurant Owners: How to Reduce Your Insurance Costs during the COVID-19 Crisis– Sherin & Lodgen

Mitigate the Financial Impact of COVID-19: The Strategic Approach to Insurance and Federal Claims – EY

Can I Still Sell My Property When the Registry Closes? – Ruberto, Israel & Weiner

Impact of COVID-19 Gives Good Reason to Consider Emergency Cooperation Agreement – Day Pitney

Coronavirus: Impact on the Retail Industry – Goulston & Storrs

Casa Myrna
SafeLink Hotline available. (877) 785-2020

Children’s Law Center
COVID-19 Updates: Lynn and MGH-Chelsea locations are closed.
Attorney’s individual representation is restricted to emergencies only (with few exceptions).
Help Line: (888) KIDLAW8, (781) 581-1977,
Official COVID-19 Statement and Staff Directory Available here.

City Life/Vida Urbana
COVID-19 Updates: Offices are closed due to the public crisis.
Hosting online meetings here.
Eviction Emergency Hotline:
– (617) 934-5006 (English)
– (617) 397-3773 (Español)
Resource Page Available here.

De Novo Center for Justice and Healing
Meeting with current and new clients via video and conference call. All clinics are suspended. Intake open during normal business hours. Intake Line: (617) 661-1010

Greater Boston Legal Services
COVID-19 Updates: Call ERLI for intake. (617) 603-1700
CASLS clients are encouraged to call main number and leave voicemail. (617) 603-2700
Housing clinic is done on a one-on-one basis by phone. Other clinics are currently postponed.
Supplemental info on COVID-19 available in multiple languages here.

Kids in Need of Defense
COVID-19 Updates: Resources page available here.
Email Contact:

Lawyers Clearinghouse
FAQ and Resource page available here.

Lawyers for Civil Rights
Phone intake still open (617) 482-4392
Resource page available here.

Resource page available here.

Mass Housing
Phone and email intake. (888) 843-6432,
Resource page available here.

Massachusetts Advocates for Children
Rescheduling and postponing all public events that cannot be online.

Helpline available:
– English (617) 357-8431 ext. 3224
– Español (617) 357-8431 ext. 3237

Resource page available here.

Massachusetts Law Reform Institute
Resource page available here.

Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corp.
Resource page available here.
Intake Lines open: (617) 367-8544

Massachusetts Access to Justice Commission Launches COVID-19 Pro Bono Portal

Medical Legal Partnership | Boston
Resource page for issues related to COVID-19 here.
Webinar recording of Town Hall available here.

Metrowest Legal Services
Intake Lines Open:(508) 620-1830 or 1 (800) 696-1501
Voicemails answered between 10 – 1 (Mon, Wed, Fri) and 2 – 4 (Tue, Thu)
Clinics suspended, offering phone consultations.
Resource Page available here.

Northeast Legal Aid
Open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Appointments only.
Online intake here.

Meeting with current and new clients via video and conference call. All clinics are suspended.
Intake Line: (617) 742-9296

Prisoner’s Legal Services
Resource page available here.

Rian Immigrant Center
Attorneys offering free phone consultations. (617) 542-7654
Resource page available here.

Veterans Legal Services
Legal Clinics have been canceled through 4/30/2020.
Call (857) 317-4474 for most up to date info.

Volunteer Lawyer’s Project of the Boston Bar Association
Clinics closed until the Court Services Centers open 5/4/2020
FAQ page available here.

Women’s Bar Foundation of Massachusetts
Open for intake in 209A cases (617) 973-6666

Youth Advocacy Foundation
Helpline open: (617) 910-5829.

Latest New From the Courts

6/14 The SJC & BBE announced that the 9/30 & 10/1 in-person MA administration of the Uniform Bar Examination (UBE) is cancelled. An alternative, remotely-administered exam for admission to the MA bar will be offered in lieu of the UBE on October 5 & 6, 2020. Info.

6/24 Issues New Order On Court Operations and Reopening Courthouses

6/3  The SJC has issued an Order regarding the transfer of certain single justice matters 

5/26 SJC Extends Court Closures Through July 1st, No Jury Trials Until After September 8th

5/13 Trial Court Establishes New Committees to Address Pandemic Impact on Courts

4/28 The SJC issued an updated order, effective May 4, 2020, regarding MA state court operation. Until at least June 1, 2020, all courts of the Commonwealth will continue to be closed to the general public, except where entry is required to address emergency matters.

4/10 The Land Court Chief Title Examiner has issued a Memorandum outlining Interim Procedures for the Remote Processing of Subsequent Cases and Condominium Registered Land Documents

4/6 The SJC has issued an Order authorizing the use of electronic signatures for attorneys and self-represented parties, effective April 7, 2020

4/6 Trial Court and Trial Court Departments Issue Orders Concerning Court Operations and Implementation of Supreme Judicial Court Decision

4/5 Probate and Family Court Standing Order 2-20: Court Operations Under the Exigent Circumstances Created by COVID-19, amended effective April 6, 2020

4/4 The Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts and the Board or Bar Examiners announced that the July 2020 Massachusetts Bar Exam has been rescheduled for Wednesday, September 30 and Thursday, October 1, 2020 in Boston.

4/3 MA Appeals Court Notice Permitting Supplemental Memorandum in April 2020 Oral Argument Cases

4/1/20 Land Court Issues New Standing Order to Implement Emergency Measures in Response to COVID-19

4/1/20 MA Trial Court Launches Help Line to Assist Court Users

4/1/20 SJC Issues Order Restricting Court Appearances to Emergency Matters Until May 4th

3/30/20 SJC Issues New Order Concerning Email Service in Cases Under Rule 5(b) of Mass. Rules of Civil Procedure

3/30/20 View the Full List of Temporary MA Court Closures

3/26/20 Land Court Issues Notice Regarding Suspension of Processing of Servicemembers and Tax Lien Case Filings

3/24/20 Suffolk Probate & Family Court Issues Order Suspending In-Person Non-Emergency Hearings

3/23/20 SJC Issues New Order Concerning the Imposition of GPS Monitoring as Condition of Release or of Probation

3/20/20 SJC Issues New Order for the Administering of Oaths at Depositions via Remote Audio-Video Communication Equipment 

3/19/20 A Message From Chief Justice Ralph D. Gants

3/19/20 Trial Court Issues Emergency Administrative Order Concerning Emergency Protection Orders

3/18/20 MA Land Court Issues Standing Orders to Supplement Emergency Measures in response to COVID-19

3/18/20 Issues Order Restricting Court Appearances to Emergency Matters 

3/16/20 MA Trial Court Issues Emergency Administrative Orders

3/16/20 U.S. District Court Issues Orders Related to Grand Jury Proceedings, Criminal Proceedings, Mediations and CVB Sessions, and Naturalization Ceremonies.

Attorney Health & Well-Being

SJC Standing Committee for Lawyer Well-Being

Read our Q&A with Director of the SJC Standing Committee for Lawyer Well-Being, Heidi Alexander.

The SJC Standing Committee on Lawyer Well-Being is focused on the immediate needs of lawyers, law students, and legal professionals as a result of COVID-19.

  • TechLine: This pandemic challenges lawyers to swiftly alter their law practices in order to continue to serve their clients. This requires the understanding and use of technology, which is a significant source of stress for many attorneys. To help attorneys navigate what may be a new way of practice, the Committee has launched a TechLine. The TechLine provides attorneys and legal professionals with live one-on-one assistance in selecting, implementing, and troubleshooting technology to operate their practices. Staffed by Massachusetts-licensed volunteer attorneys, callers receive assistance and support from their fellow lawyers who can identify with and understand the struggles. TechLine is available Monday through Friday.Callers should leave a message with their name, phone number, and nature of their request. A volunteer will respond by 5pm. The number is (888) 314-7714. More information is available here.
  • Guide to Remote Work: For attorneys who need a basic starting point for how to maintain continuity of their practice while away from their office, the Committee’s Simple Remote Work Guide is a distilled summary of the bare necessities for remote practice. The Guide includes questions attorneys should answer when transitioning to remote practice as well as specific options for low-cost technology and video tutorials for easy implementation. You can find that guide, here.

Resources from Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers (LCL)

LCL has just announced Free & Confidential weekly online discussion group for lawyers, law students, and judges – LCL MA Open Connection – for peer support throughout this difficult time. It will meet on Mondays through June at least. Find more here.

LCL is also offering Remote Addiction Recovery Peer Support Group Meetings.

Resource from The Massachusetts Law Office Management Assistance Program (LOMAP)

LOMAP helps lawyers and law students in Massachusetts to implement best practices and procedures for operating a law practice.  They have put together this Remote Work Plan covering law firm policies, client service, data security & more.

Resources to Manage Stress, Anxiety, and Mental Health

The American Bar Association’s Committee on Lawyers Assistance Programs has created a landing page of resources related to COVID-19.  There are resources on Law Practice  Management, Staying Mentally Healthy, and more. Check out those resources here.

To get free confidential, 24/7 support for anxiety, text “HOME” to the Crisis Text Line at  741741. The Crisis Text Line resources for people of all ages who are feeling anxious or isolated during this time, and would prefer to communicate via text.  Learn more

The CDC’s has published a Guide on Managing Anxiety and Stress during the Covid-19 outbreak. This page has resources for everyone, including families and children.

Rocket Matter has created a helpful guide on Mental Health Tips for Working Remotely

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We will continue to keep our members and partners informed.

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