South Dartmouth Land Use & Zoning Lawyer, Massachusetts

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Francis P. Balas

Real Estate, Business & Trade, Land Use & Zoning
Status:  Inactive           Licensed:  51 Years

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LEGAL TERMS

DEMURRER

A request made to a court, asking it to dismiss a lawsuit on the grounds that no legal claim is asserted. For example, you might file a demurrer if your neighbo... (more...)
A request made to a court, asking it to dismiss a lawsuit on the grounds that no legal claim is asserted. For example, you might file a demurrer if your neighbor sued you for parking on the street in front of her house. Your parking habits may annoy your neighbor, but the curb is public property and parking there doesn't cause any harm recognized by the law. After a demurrer is filed, the judge holds a hearing at which both sides can make their arguments about the matter. The judge may dismiss all or part of the lawsuit, or may allow the party who filed the lawsuit to amend its complaint. In some states and in federal court, the term demurrer has been replaced by 'motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim' (called a '12(b)(6) motion' in federal court) or similar term.

QUIET ENJOYMENT

The right of a property owner or tenant to enjoy his or her property without interference. Disruption of quiet enjoyment may constitute a nuisance. Leases and r... (more...)
The right of a property owner or tenant to enjoy his or her property without interference. Disruption of quiet enjoyment may constitute a nuisance. Leases and rental agreements often contain a 'covenant of quiet enjoyment,' expressly obligating the landlord to see that tenants have the opportunity to live undisturbed.

LIABILITY INSURANCE COVERAGE

Compensation to third parties who are injured or whose property is damaged due to the fault of the insurance holder. You may have liability insurance for your c... (more...)
Compensation to third parties who are injured or whose property is damaged due to the fault of the insurance holder. You may have liability insurance for your car or your home, or to cover actions you take in the course of your profession. Liability polices are sometimes called 'third-party policies.'

ILLUSORY PROMISE

A promise that pledges nothing, because it is vague or because the promisor can choose whether or not to honor it. Such promises are not legally binding. For ex... (more...)
A promise that pledges nothing, because it is vague or because the promisor can choose whether or not to honor it. Such promises are not legally binding. For example, if you get a new job and promise to work for three years, unless you resign sooner, you haven't made a valid contract and can resign or be fired at any time.

BALLOON PAYMENT

A large final payment due at the end of a loan, typically a home or car loan, to pay off the amount your monthly payments didn't cover. Many states prohibit bal... (more...)
A large final payment due at the end of a loan, typically a home or car loan, to pay off the amount your monthly payments didn't cover. Many states prohibit balloon payments in loans for goods or services that are primarily for personal, family or household use, or require the lender to let you refinance the balloon payment before forcing collection.

EXECUTRIX

An old-fashioned term for a female executor--the person named in a will to handle the distribution of the deceased person's property. Now, whether male or femal... (more...)
An old-fashioned term for a female executor--the person named in a will to handle the distribution of the deceased person's property. Now, whether male or female, this person is called either the executor or the personal representative.

SUBSTITUTED SERVICE

A method for the formal delivery of court papers that takes the place of personal service. Personal service means that the papers are placed directly into the h... (more...)
A method for the formal delivery of court papers that takes the place of personal service. Personal service means that the papers are placed directly into the hands of the person to be served. Substituted service, on the other hand, may be accomplished by leaving the documents with a designated agent, with another adult in the recipient's home, with the recipient's manager at work or by posting a notice in a prominent place and then using certified mail to send copies of the documents to the recipient.

INCIDENTS OF OWNERSHIP

Any control over property. If you give away property but keep an incident of ownership--for example, you give away an apartment building but retain the right to... (more...)
Any control over property. If you give away property but keep an incident of ownership--for example, you give away an apartment building but retain the right to receive rent--then legally, no gift has been made. This distinction can be important if you're making large gifts to reduce your eventual estate tax.

HOUSE CLOSING

The final transfer of the ownership of a house from the seller to the buyer, which occurs after both have met all the terms of their contract and the deed has b... (more...)
The final transfer of the ownership of a house from the seller to the buyer, which occurs after both have met all the terms of their contract and the deed has been recorded.

SAMPLE LEGAL CASES

Bjorklund v. Zoning Board of Appeals of Norwell

Prospect Street is winding with elevation changes. To the north of the plaintiffs' property are nine homes containing an average of 2,638 square feet of living area, all located on lots that are at least one acre. To the south of the property are fourteen homes containing an average of ...

Kitras v. Zoning Administrator of Aquinnah

1. Background. On March 29, 1999, the town's planning board nominated the entire town as a DCPC. See St. 1977, c. 831, § 8. The commission voted on April 22, 1999, to accept this nomination for consideration. [8] See id. On June 17, 1999, the commission designated the entire ...

Elles v. ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS OF QUINCY

As a general rule, an aggrieved litigant cannot as a matter of 674 right pursue an immediate appeal from an interlocutory order unless a statute or rule authorizes it. Maddocks v. Ricker, 403 Mass. 592, 597 (1988), and cases cited. One narrow exception to this principle is where ...