April 28, 2020
To our valued Clients & friends,
We at McKenzie & Associates, P.C. would like to personally express our appreciation to our Clients and friends as we all continue to cope with the challenges posed by the COVID-19 / Coronavirus pandemic. We pray that each of you and the members of your family are healthy and safe, and are spared from infection or serious harm from the Coronavirus.
On April 28, 2020, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker updated his prior Emergency Order that requires all businesses not providing “COVID-19 Essential Services” to close their workplaces to workers, customers and the public. The Order encourages businesses to continue operations remotely and was extended until May 18, 2020.
In accordance with this guidance, our 183 State Street office is temporarily closed to Clients and visitors. However, we will continue to provide services to our Clients by utilizing the technology infrastructure we invested in six years ago, which allows our attorneys to work remotely. We have secure access to all of the same resources we would have in the office, and our direct dial numbers still provide our Clients with seamless telephone access. Though we are still working, we are working differently. As we make these adjustments, please find answers to some frequently asked questions:
Our office is closed; but our Firm is open for business. Our office is temporarily closed to Clients and visitors. During this time, we will receive our U.S. Mail; however, please contact the addressee before sending a parcel to our office via FedEx, UPS, or another carrier. As always, we will be accepting credit card payments, and we are encouraging this method of payment to reduce the volume paper mail into our office. Please email our office manager to request a credit card payment form, or to request that we contact you to obtain card information for security purposes.
Contacting our Attorneys. Our attorneys can be reached via the email addresses or direct-dial telephone numbers listed on our Firm’s website. As always, we will endeavor to respond to voicemails and emails within one business day of receiving any such communication. We continue to be available for new matter consultations via telephone, and we will also available for video consultations whenever face-to-face meetings are requested or required.
Information about Litigation and Probate Matters. All the courts of the Commonwealth are currently open to conduct court business, but the courthouses themselves are generally closed to the public until at least May 4, 2020. These closures will have an effect on certain dates and deadlines that may have already been scheduled for months, for example: all trials that were scheduled to begin between March 13th and May 1st will be rescheduled to a date after May 4th; filing deadlines falling between March 16th and May 4th are extended until May 4th; and injunctions and similar orders expiring between March 16th and May 4th will continue to remain in effect until the matter is rescheduled and heard.
Despite the closure of the courthouses, our attorneys are still be able to make filings electronically with both the Massachusetts and federal courts. We will continue our work on new and existing matters and keep you informed of developments and any new or rescheduled court dates. In the interim, please contact the attorney handling your matter if you have any immediate questions or concerns about the status of your case.
Information about Administrative Matters (Zoning, Licensing, etc.). The Order to close non-essential businesses means that most state and local municipal agencies are closed, most agency boards will not convene, and timelines for permits and approvals may be affected. For example, the City of Boston Board of Appeal has postponed all of its hearings until May 15, 2020. During the time these agencies are closed, we will continue working and do our best to keep on your matters progressing. Please contact us if you have any questions about the status of your matter.
Information about Real Estate & Commercial Transactions. Due to the state-ordered business closures, we have observed delays in closing dates, moving dates, financing contingency dates, inspection dates, and other transaction milestones. In addition, some transactions that require court orders, such as a license to sell real estate or for the appointment of a special master, may be affected by reduced courthouse access. Our attorneys are already versed in the court’s newly issued COVID-19 guidance, and will endeavor to obtain emergency relief, if necessary, to obtain any orders required for the transaction to proceed. In the interim, please feel free to contact the attorney handling your transaction if you have any immediate questions or concerns about its status.
Information about Estate Planning matters. Finally, these unprecedented times have highlighted for all of us certain inescapable realities. If you do not have an estate plan, we strongly recommend that you consider making one. If you do have an estate plan, now may be a good time to consider updating it: we counsel our Clients to give their estate plans much thought and consideration, rather than being forced to make such decisions under crisis conditions. We are available immediately to assist you in developing a plan to transition your assets, tax efficiently, to the next generation of your family or to support your charitable causes.
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We all are experiencing the strain that the Coronavirus pandemic has imposed on us, so we sincerely thank you for your continued business and confidence through this these unusual times. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions regarding any of the above.We wish you all good health, both now and in the future.
Very truly yours,
McKenzie & Associates, P.C.