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Law Office of Maurice LaRiviere, Jr.

Massachusetts case law

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This page will provide you with an outline of the latest court decisions or statute updates.

Massachusetts Tort Claims Act
Automobile Accident

Appeals Court of Massachusetts,

Shirley P. ARIEL vs. TOWN OF KINGSTON.

June 6, 2007.

The court ruled that the police negligently directing traffic which results in an accident can’t be sued nor can the town for which the work.

The court went on to find that Immunities provided by the Massachusetts Tort Claims Act's provision setting forth independent bases for immunity from suit operate in the alternative; even if one immunity contains an exception that would permit a claim to be brought, that claim is barred if any of the other immunities apply

 

 

Employment Law

Lie detector tests forced on employees

Furtado vs. Town of Plymouth

Decided June 11,2007

Mass. Appeals Court

(Public) Employees can be discharged for refusing to answer questions narrowly drawn and specifically related to their job performance, where the answers cannot be used against them in a criminal proceeding.

Without a grant of immunity from future criminal prosecution, a law enforcement agency would not be allowed to lawfully administer to its employee a polygraph test within the exception of the statute excepting lie detector tests administered by law enforcement agencies in criminal investigations from prohibition on employers using lie detector tests. M.G.L.A. c. 149, 19B(2).
Police department could require police officer to take polygraph test regarding allegations of criminal conduct by officer, under the exception to prohibition on employers using lie detector tests for “lie detector tests administered by law enforcement agencies as may be otherwise permitted in criminal investigations,” even though district attorney would not press criminal charges against the officer, where internal departmental investigation continued after grant of immunity to officer and clearly concerned allegations of criminal conduct as distinguished from violations of terms of employment or rules associated therewith. M.G.L.A. c. 149, 19B(2).