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Contact: Michael Avitzur
Director of Government Relations

A Day to Celebrate! Governor Patrick Signs Alimony Reform Act of 2011

Lisa C. Goodheart, President of the Boston Bar Association and BBA Family Law Co-Chairs Kelly Leighton and Lee Peterson will be among the many advocates for alimony reform as Governor Deval Patrick is expected to sign into law the landmark Alimony Reform Act of 2011 later today.

"As lawyers, we like to facilitate predictability and consistency in legal decisions," said Goodheart. "This legislation will provide a new blueprint for formulating alimony rewards, where appropriate, based on specific circumstances. Alimony reform has been a long time coming to Massachusetts, and this new law will provide greater clarity for lawyers and judges and, more importantly, greater fairness for divorcing and divorced parties."

The BBA has advocated zealously for alimony reform that would enable judges to limit the duration of alimony and to amend prior judgments that had no termination point, and joined forces with the Massachusetts Bar Association to convene a joint task force to develop recommendations for much needed change. With the leadership of Senator Gale Candaras and Representative John Fernandes, these recommendations became the basis for the Alimony Reform Act of 2011.

The Boston Bar Association traces its origins to meetings convened by John Adams, who provided pro bono representation to the British soldiers prosecuted for the Boston Massacre and went on to become the nation’s second president. Its mission is to advance the highest standards of excellence for the legal profession, facilitate access to justice, serve the community at large and promote diversity and inclusion.