Massachusetts State House.
Policy Library

Commonwealth v. J.F. (SJC-13334)

January 30, 2023

The BBA filed an amicus letter in this case arguing that state law mandates automatic sealing of criminal records for charges if a defendant is found not guilty, a grand jury declines to indict, or a judge finds no probable cause. In a letter drafted by Ryan Rosenblatt of Sullivan & Worcester LLP, the BBA noted that individuals with criminal charges “often face heightened barriers to adequate housing, employment, and other benefits that would enable them to participate fully in society. … Sealing is a central means for alleviating the adverse consequences that former defendants face.” The Supreme Judicial Court adopted the BBA’s position in May 2023. Read more.