Trial Court Rules

Uniform Summary Process Rules

Trial Court Rules Uniform Summary Process Rule 11: Relief from judgment

Effective Date: 09/01/1980

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(a) District and Boston Municipal Court Departments

In the District Court and Boston Municipal Court Departments, Rules 60 and 62(b) and (d) of the Massachusetts Rules of Civil Procedure, which deal with relief from judgment and stay of execution, respectively, shall apply to summary process actions; provided that relief under Rule 60(b) shall be available only in cases where the judgment has been entered on default or dismissal. In cases that have been heard on the merits, relief under Rule 60(b) shall not be available.

(b) Superior and Housing Court Departments

In the Superior Court and Housing Court Departments, Rules 60 and 62 of the Massachusetts Rules of Civil Procedure shall apply to summary process actions.

Commentary

Section (a) of Rule 11 applies only to the District Court and Boston Municipal Court Departments. The right of an aggrieved party to a new trial on appeal provides the rationale for limiting the availability of relief under Rule 60 in those two Departments. See G.L. c. 231, § 97.

Section (b) applies to the Superior Court and Housing Court Departments. An aggrieved party in those departments does not have a right to a new trial; instead the appeal is heard in the Appeals Court. See G.L. c. 239, § 5.

It must be noted that the running of time for appeal in summary process actions is not affected by the filing of a motion under Rule 60.

Rule 62(b) allows the court to stay execution under certain conditions upon filing of a motion under Rule 60. Stay of execution pending appeal is governed by  G.L. c. 239, § 5.

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