At Potter MacLellan we understand that the South Shore’s real estate environment is constantly evolving. We believe that our clients have a need for a full service firm with qualified professionals on-hand to handle all of their real estate legal needs. Whether you need assistance with the purchase or sale of a home, a refinance or mortgage adjustment, a landlord/tenant dispute, or zoning issue, Potter MacLellan has you covered. At Potter MacLellan we know that real estate-related transactions and matters often involve your most valued investment, and we pride ourselves in the meticulous, detail-oriented guidance and representation that our clients receive.
Residential Real Estate Transactions
We provide personal real estate representation for both buyer’s & seller’s commencing with the initial signing of an Offer to Purchase and continuing through the actual closing and passing of papers. We offer residential real estate representation for the negotiation of the purchase or sale of single family homes, newly constructed developments and newly converted or existing condominiums. Our scope of representation can be as limited as the negotiation of a single-family purchase and sales contract and as complicated as the negotiation or sale of a multi-unit condominium building or apartment complex. Additionally, we have extensive experience with the conversion of existing multi-unit apartment buildings and two-four families into condominiums complexes to be sold as individual units.
Homeowner Foreclosure Defense & Bankruptcy & Loan Modification
If your mortgage is in default or if foreclosure proceedings have been initiated against you and your home, do not let any more time pass without retaining proper legal counsel and defense against foreclosure. Potter MacLellan has years of experience dealing with big banks and we know the steps to take to try to avoid foreclosure and potentially reinstate your defaulted loan!
Meetings can be in-person, over the phone, in the office, or in the comfort of your own home. All initial consultations are free of charge so that we may assess your specific situation and see if our firm can assist you with your legal needs.
At Potter MacLellan, we understand the difficult financial times that many are experiencing as a result of the Massachusetts real estate market crash and the economic downturn. We are qualified to assist all homeowners in negotiating the forbearance of foreclosure proceedings or with negotiating and navigating a loan modification on a mortgage in default. Our focus is to do whatever is necessary to avoid a foreclosure sale or a creditor attachment of your home. In the unfortunate event a client is in need of legal representation to avoid the foreclosure of their home or investment property, our lawyers have the necessary experience and skills required to effectively advocate on behalf of our clients to protect the loss or attachment of their assets with a strong, competent foreclosure defense strategy. Whether the firm is retained at the time of initial default or just prior to a scheduled foreclosure sale, we are confident that our involvement will result in an exponentially more favorable outcome for the homeowner. In the event, we determine a homeowner has no other option but to file bankruptcy, we have the tools at our disposal to effectively represent debtors on Chapter 13 and Chapter 11 bankruptcy actions in United States Bankruptcy Court.
Lender Foreclosure, Bankruptcy & Loss Mitigation Services
All foreclosure actions are handled and overseen by a managing attorney. At Potter MacLellan, we work with lenders on a number of legal issues, including foreclosure actions, forbearance agreements, loan workouts, short sale negotiations, post-foreclosure evictions, deficiency actions & resolution of post-foreclosure REO and title matters. Our firms understands the complexity involved with foreclosing on residential and commercial properties in Massachusetts & Rhode Island and we work closely with our lender clients to ensure all foreclosure files are resolved expeditiously and with attention to mitigating any further financial loss. Moreover, the scope of our legal representation extends to the representation of creditor interests in bankruptcy actions and includes the preparation and filing of proofs of claim, motions for relief from stay, objections to debtor bankruptcy plans and any corresponding appearances in Unites States Bankruptcy Court on the client’s behalf. Our firm provides clients with personalized, honest and straightforward legal advice concerning their foreclosure and loss mitigation matters from the moment the file is referred to our office. Further are committed to providing clients with highly skilled representation, excellent value, and 100% satisfaction on every transaction.
Business and Civil Litigation
Potter MacLellan LLP combines its extensive courtroom advocacy experience with a specialized settlement negotiation approach, to bring the most value-laden legal solution to its clients. We have the willingness and ability to provide aggressive, first-class representation at trial, but simultaneously recognize the importance of cost-saving and stress-relieving measures like pre-trial motions and/or settlement negotiations. We know that there is never a “one-size fits all” solution to any legal dispute and this is why we place an emphasis on knowing our clients as well as we know the details of their legal dispute. We evaluate and consider every aspect of our clients’ unique situations and assist them in developing personalized legal strategies designed to suit their case-specific needs and realize the best possible outcome to their disputes.
Because we want our clients to contact us without hesitation about any issues and/or concerns that may arise, our Corporate clients enjoy free, unlimited telephone contact with their attorney. In this way, we try to emulate the benefits of having in-house counsel right down the hall from your office.
Pre-Claim Dispute Resolution
Litigation can often be avoided by simply coming to a mutually-agreeable, out-of-court settlement. Whether you are on the offensive or defensive, sometimes all it takes is to have counsel communicate their respective client’s position in a comprehensive, well organized manner, outlining the facts and law that they believe support that position. Taking this proactive approach often helps to extricate emotions from the dispute resolution process and helps to reduce confusion. In some circumstances, it may even become clear that a particular cause of action is legally barred, eliminating the possibility of litigation. In other cases, a potential claim may very well exist, but these pre-emptive discussions will often result in out-of-court, mutually beneficial settlements without either party ever having to bear the costs or stress of litigation.
Client-Driven Litigation Approach
Should pre-claim dispute resolution efforts be unsuccessful, Potter MacLellan will be ready to file a complaint or responsive pleading on your behalf. Throughout litigation, no decision is ever made without our client being completely informed of all available options and explicitly approving any particular course of action. From the filing of a complaint or answer through the drafting of post-trial motions, you – the client – will be at the helm. We always keep you 100% informed of any developments in your case. At Potter MacLellan, we proactively reach out to our clients with updates, because we don’t believe that our clients should be using their time or energy to contact us to find out what is happening with their cases. Bottom line – you’ll be informed and involved, every step of the way, as to ensure that you have a meaningful and beneficial attorney-client experience throughout the life of your matter.
At Potter MacLellan, we understand the importance of collecting your business’ outstanding fees in a timely manner. Ensuring that receivables are collected promptly and consistently is critical in maintaining positive cash flow and keeping your business moving in the right direction. Fortunately, there are a number of different approaches to take in pursuing delinquent accounts and recovering the money you are owed. There is no single, fail-safe approach and the strategy your business takes should be specific to its particular needs and circumstances.
Potter MacLellan’s debt collections efforts are results orientated. We aggressively use all methods available to have debtors pay outstanding fees or satisfy outstanding debts before litigation becomes necessary. In the event a matter is litigated we are equally aggressive in enforcing a post-judgment order through any available means. Our collection methods are designed to collect the total debt owed to our clients in the shortest amount of time possible while also proceeding in the most cost effective manner for our clients. Furthermore, our fee structure for this service is often contingency-based; this means that unless we recover the money you are owed, you don’t pay us anything.
Direct Attorney to Debtor Communication
Sometimes, all it takes is direct contact between your attorney and the debtor. Often times, in pursuing its outstanding accounts, businesses will either: (1) assign the debt to a collections agency; or (2) handles collections in-house. Using your attorney to directly contact the debtor is usually more effective than either of these two popular methods. First, debtors will frequently take contact from a law office more seriously than form correspondence from a collections agency. Furthermore, as the creditor business your time is money and resources dedicated to the pursuit of past-due accounts are not being used to generate new business or tend to your current business objectives. Engaging an attorney to act as your agent will free internal resources up at no immediate cost to the creditor-business.
The small claims procedure affords creditor-businesses a time-effective and inexpensive method of adjudicating a fee-claim. Although motions and supplementary-process hearings are heard by judges, all small claims trials are heard before a clerk magistrate. Pre- and post-judgment attachments are not available at the small claims level and generally, damages may not exceed $7,000.00.
Advantages of the small-claims process include:
- Quicker hearing dates
- Less expensive litigation option
- Lower filing fee
- No service fees until post-judgment collection
- Informal pleadings and procedure
- Same equity powers as District and Superior Court
The small claims procedure is usually best-suited for small-figure, high-volume fee-collections given the quick hearing dates and informal, inexpensive litigation.
District and Superior Court
For larger fee-disputes, it is usually more appropriate, and sometimes necessary, to file a civil complaint in the District or Superior Court. Although there is no jurisdictional limit on damages in either court, there is a procedural limit of $25,000.00 in the District Court. This essentially means that a creditor is welcome to file a claim over $25,000.00 in the District Court, but if another party objects to the claim being heard in that court, the judge has no discretion to refuse to dismiss the action. Along these same lines, a creditor must reasonably expect to recover $25,000.00 or more in order to file a complaint in the Superior Court.
Advantages to pursuing fee-claims at the District or Superior Court level include:
- Pre- and post-judgment attachment rights available
- There is a right of appeal
- Damages may exceed $7,000.00
Motions for Attachment and Trustee Process
As referenced above, pre- and post-judgment attachment rights are available at the District and Superior Court. These can be extremely effective tools in recovering a creditor-business’ outstanding fees. The most common method by which a creditor may “attach” certain debtor assets are through Writs of Attachment or Trustee Process attachment. Writs of Attachment are obtained in order to attach to real estate or personal property that is owned or in the possession of the debtor. Trustee process allows a creditor to secure the assets of the debtor that are in the possession of a third-party. The most common example of this is a trustee process attachment to a debtor’s bank accounts.
The attachment process can be fairly involved and some forms of personal property are statutorily exempt from attachment.
The above represent a few examples of the various avenues that Potter MacLellan will explore in recovering outstanding fees that are owed to your business. Again, there is no “one size fits all” approach to fee-collections and in every case we would discuss your company’s specific needs in order to develop an optimally effective collections solution.
Our Legal Fees
Our fee collections clients contact us because they are owed money for the goods or services that they have already provided. Accordingly, we handle most fee collections cases on contingency; we don’t believe our clients should incur any additional costs to collect money that is rightfully theirs. Thus, our fee is a percentage of any money recovered as a result of our dedicated efforts and we don’t get paid unless you collect. In this way, our interests are completely aligned and there is no need for the client to worry about how much it is costing them to recover their receivables. Contact us for your business’ special contingency rate.
Having criminal charges leveled against you is stressful and emotional. Potter MacLellan has the criminal courtroom experience to provide you with the attentive and zealous defense you need in order to: (1) understand the nature of the charges against you, (2) ensure that the requisite probable cause existed for each charge to issue, (3) challenge the legitimacy of any stop or seizure, and (4) force your accuser to prove the allegations they have made against you beyond a reasonable doubt. Nobody should be forced into a situation where they feel pressured to admit to something or that nobody is on their side. Potter MacLellan is on your side and we make certain that your Constitutional rights are protected.
Examples of the types of criminal cases that we handle, include:
Operating Under the Influence
Drunk driving, or “Operating Under the Influence,” is taken very seriously in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. In Massachusetts, the legal blood alcohol content (also known as, BAC) is only .08%. In fact, if you are under 21 years of age or operating a commercial vehicle, the limits are even lower. These low limits, while vital to the safety of our communities, does not afford one very much latitude when consuming alcoholic beverages. While the best policy is always to completely abstain from consuming any alcoholic beverages before getting behind the wheel, this isn’t always realistic. Because of the low legal limit, many people get charged with Operating Under the Influence here in Massachusetts and such an experience can be a life-altering event. If you have been charged with Operating Under the Influence, there are critical inquiries that should be made to ensure that the police conducted a legal stop of your vehicle and that all proper procedures were followed at the time of your arrest.
Possession of Narcotics
The potential penalties associated with the possession of narcotics can be severe, depending on the substance at issue. If you have been charged with the possession of a controlled substance, it is important that the legitimacy of the seizure of that substance from your vehicle, home, or person is rigorously examined. Potter MacLellan has years of experience dealing with narcotics-related offenses and we can help ensure that your rights are adequately protected.
Assault and Battery
Even the slightest physical alteration can give rise to criminal charges for Assault and Battery. These charges are serious and can have a detrimental impact on one’s life. It is important that the facts and circumstances surrounding the allegations are thoroughly investigated so that any factual or legal defenses available to you are properly asserted. Potter MacLellan will put its years of investigative experience to work for you, to ensure that such defenses are raised on your behalf.