1. For summary process cases filed subsequent to the expiration of St. 2020, c. 65, plaintiffs shall not provide a trial date on the summary process summons and complaint (S&C), but rather should indicate on the S&C that the trial date is “to be determined by the court” or “TBD by the court. The S&C will inform the parties that the court will notify them of the date, time, and manner of the court event.1
2. Upon the entry of a new summary process action that includes a claim for non-payment of rent, the plaintiff shall file with the summons and complaint an affidavit, as promulgated by the court, indicating whether the plaintiff has received a declaration from the tenant under the order issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, effective September 4, 2020, (“CDC Order”). In a pending summary process action that includes a claim for non-payment of rent, the plaintiff shall file said affidavit on or before the date of the case management conference. In all such cases, the plaintiff shall file a subsequent affidavit prior to the entry of judgment. The affidavit, as promulgated by the court, will be available on the court’s website.
3. In both pending and new summary process cases, the court will notify the parties of the date and time of the first court event, which shall be a judicial case management conference. The case management conference will allow the court to explore the parties’ interest in mediation, the availability of assistance with housing costs, and the requirements of the CDC Order. The conference will also provide an opportunity to establish stipulations, narrow the factual and legal issues to be addressed at trial, schedule urgent or dispositive motions so as to minimize delay, and establish discovery deadlines tailored to the specific case.
4. Answer to a summary process complaint shall be due no later than three business days prior to the date of the case management conference, unless otherwise ordered by the court.
5. If the case is referred to mediation, the case may be continued for a further case management conference. The court may also, at the request of the parties or at its discretion, continue any case for any reason if doing so will assist the parties with resolving the dispute. If the case is not referred to mediation or an agreement is not reached, the case will be continued for a bench trial date no sooner than two weeks after the case management conference.
6. Failure to appear at the case management conference will not result in entry of a default or dismissal of the case. Instead, the case will be scheduled for a trial no sooner than two weeks following the date of the case management conference. Where a party wishes to serve a discovery demand on the opposing party but has failed to appear at the case management conference, the party must, by motion, obtain approval of the Court to serve such demand.
7. Any request for a transfer of the action under Uniform Summary Process Rule 4 shall be filed in both courts no later than the day before the commencement of the trial.
8. In all summary process cases that include a claim for non-payment of rent, the plaintiff shall again file an affidavit prior to the entry of judgment, and with any request for the reissuance of an execution, indicating whether the plaintiff has received a declaration from the tenant under the Order. See ¶ 2.