G.L. c.277, s.70C
Subject to several exceptions (see statute for details), the court may treat a violation of a municipal ordinance, by-law, or misdemeanor offense as a civil infraction.

See Offenses Ineligible for Decriminalization pdf format of Offenses Ineligible for Decriminalization
for more information. 

Fine or Other Penalty

Fine as provided in applicable ordinance, by-law, or misdemeanor law.
If the ordinance, by-law, or misdemeanor law does not provide a civil fine as a possible penalty, the court may impose a fine of up to $5,000.


If the court proceeds with the action as a civil infraction, the court will not appoint you a lawyer. If the court finds you responsible for the offense, you will be “adjudicated responsible,” instead of “found guilty,” and will not be sentenced to any time in prison.  You may be ordered to pay restitution.