Supreme Judicial Court Rules

Supreme Judicial Court Rules Supreme Judicial Court Rule 4:04: Client's Security Board and Fund

Effective Date: 09/01/2019
Updates: Amended October 1, 1998, effective November 2, 1998 Amended June 26, 2019, effective September 1, 2019 (482 Mass. 1301)

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Table of Contents

Rule effective until September 1, 2019

Section 1

A Clients' Security Board (Board) shall be appointed by the full court. This Board shall consist of seven members of the Massachusetts bar to serve as public trustees to receive, hold, manage, and distribute the funds allocated to the Board from the annual fees assessed under subsection (1) of Rule 4:03. Such funds shall be held by the Board in trust and known as the Clients' Security Fund (Fund). The purpose of the Fund is to discharge, as far as practicable and in a reasonable manner, the collective professional responsibility of the members of the Massachusetts bar with respect to losses caused to the public by defalcations of members of the bar, acting either as attorneys or as fiduciaries (except to the extent to which they are bonded, or to the extent such losses are otherwise covered).

Section 2

(1) The Massachusetts Bar Association, each county bar association (including the Boston Bar Association as the county bar association for Suffolk County) and other appropriate organizations may submit to the court not more than three nominees for each vacancy on the Board. The full court shall select from these nominees or from any other members of the bar a person to fill each vacancy, and shall designate a Chairman, and a Vice Chairman to act in the absence for any cause of the Chairman.

(2) When the Board is first selected, one member shall be appointed for a term of one year, one for a term of two years, one for a term of three years, one for a term of four years, and one for a term of five years. When the sixth and seventh members of the Board are first selected, one member shall be appointed for a term of four years and one for a term of five years. All terms (except to fill an unexpired term) thereafter shall be for five years and no member shall succeed himself after two consecutive full terms, in addition to any term of less than five years, either by original appointment or to complete an unexpired term. He shall be eligible, however, for reappointment for further terms after a lapse of one or more years. A member whose term has expired shall continue in office until a successor is appointed.

Section 3

Meetings of the Board shall be held at the call of the Chairman or a majority of the members, and shall be held at least once each year, upon reasonable notice. Four members shall constitute a quorum. A majority of the members present at a duly constituted meeting may exercise any powers held by the Board.

Section 4

The Board, members of the Board, and the staff of the Board shall be immune from liability for any conduct in the course of their official duties.

Rule effective September 1, 2019

Section 1

The full court shall appoint a Clients' Security Board (Board). This Board shall consist of seven members of the Massachusetts bar to serve as public trustees to receive, hold, manage, and distribute the funds allocated to the Board from the annual fees assessed under Rule 4:03(1)(a). The Board shall hold such funds in trust as the Clients' Security Fund (Fund). The purpose of the Fund is to discharge, as far as practicable and in a reasonable manner, the collective professional responsibility of the members of the Massachusetts bar for actual losses caused by the theft of client funds or property by attorneys, acting either as attorneys or as fiduciaries ( except to the extent to which such losses are otherwise reimbursed).

Section 2

(A) The Massachusetts Bar Association, each county bar association (including the Boston Bar Association as the county bar association for Suffolk County) and other appropriate organizations may submit to the full court not more than three nominees for each vacancy on the Board. The full court shall select from these nominees or from any other members of the bar a person to fill each vacancy, and shall designate a Chair and a Vice Chair to act in the absence of the Chair.

(B) All terms (except to fill an unexpired term) shall be for five years. No member shall serve more than two consecutive full terms, in addition to any term of less than five years, either by original appointment or to complete an unexpired term. A member shall be eligible, however, for reappointment for further terms after a lapse of one or more years. A member whose term has expired shall continue in office until the full court appoints a successor.

Section 3

The Chair or a majority of the members may call meetings of the Board. The Board shall meet at least quarterly, upon reasonable notice to the Board members. A majority of members shall constitute a quorum. A majority of the members present at a duly constituted meeting may exercise any powers held by the Board.

Section 4

The Board, members of the Board, and the staff of the Board shall be immune from liability for any conduct in the course of their official duties.

Downloads for Supreme Judicial Court Rule 4:04: Client's Security Board and Fund

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Online

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Updates: Amended October 1, 1998, effective November 2, 1998 Amended June 26, 2019, effective September 1, 2019 (482 Mass. 1301)
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