Rule Changes and Invitations to Comment on Proposed Rules and Amendments

The court invites comments on new rules or proposed changes to existing rules and also announces rule changes.

Invitations to Comment

The court invites comments on the following new rules or proposed changes to existing rules. Invitations to comment that have expired are removed from the list.

Notice Inviting Comments on Proposed Amendments to Rule 45 of the Mass. Rules of Criminal Procedure
Comments due by: October 14, 2022

Notice Inviting Comments on Proposed Replacement of Mass. R. Crim. P. 14 (Pretrial Discovery) with Rules 14.1-14.5
Comments due by: October 14, 2022

Notice Inviting Comment on a Proposed Amendment to Rule 77 of the Mass. Rules of Civil Procedure
Comments due by: September 16, 2022

Rule Changes

The following are recent notices of rule changes and the date when each rule change goes into effect. Rule changes are removed from this list after the effective date has passed. Please refer to the Court's online listing of Rules of Court and Standing Orders to view updated rules and dates when rules were amended.

New Superior Court Standing Order 1-22: Videoconferencing of Court Events
Effective: September 1, 2022

New Juvenile Court Standing Order 1-22: Juvenile Court Operations
Effective: September 1, 2022

New Joint Standing Order 2-22 of the Boston Municipal Court Department and District Court Department: Court Operational Order
Effective: September 1, 2022

New Juvenile Court Rules for First Offense Determinations and Hearings Held Pursuant to Commonwealth v. Wallace W., 482 Mass. 789 (2019)
Effective: October 1, 2022

Amendment to SJC Rule 3:07, Massachusetts Rules of Professional Conduct
Effective: October 1, 2022

Amendments to Rules 30 and 30A of the Massachusetts Rules of Civil Procedure
Effective: September 1, 2022

Amendments to Rules of the Board of Bar Overseers
Effective: June 1, 2022

Amendments to Chapters Three and Four of the Rules of the Supreme Judicial Court
Effective: June 1, 2022

Amendments to Rule 19 of the Massachusetts Rules of Appellate Procedure
Effective: May 1, 2022

Amendments to Rule 5 of the Massachusetts Rules of Criminal Procedure
Effective: May 1, 2022

Amendments to Rules 12,16,18,28,29,31,37 and 43 of the Massachusetts Rules of Criminal Procedure
Effective: April 1, 2022

Amendments to Rules 4 and 17 of the Massachusetts Rules of Appellate Procedure
Effective: April 1, 2022

Juvenile Court Standing Order 5-21: Return of custody in care and protection proceedings
Effective: December 30, 2021
Juvenile Court Standing Order 5-21: Return of Custody in Care and Protection Proceedings, originally scheduled to take effect on November 22, 2021, will now take effect on December 30, 2021. This new standing order provides a uniform practice on the issuance and oversight of orders granted by the Juvenile Court returning custody of a child to a parent, custodian, or guardian in a care and protection proceeding.  

Boston Municipal Court Order of Recission of Orders related to Boston Municipal Court Community Response Session
Effective: November 19, 2021

Probate and Family Court Standing Order 2-2021: Interdivisional case transfers and interdivisional case assignments for hearing purposes only
Effective: November 1, 2021

A listing of Rules of Court and Standing Orders are available on the court's website. Please note that not all Massachusetts Rules of Court are available online. Efforts have been taken to ensure accuracy in all rules on the court's website, but if there are discrepancies between the electronic versions of the rules found on the website and the official print versions that appear in a volume such as Massachusetts Reports, the print version should be considered authoritative.

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