In The News

News - 2017

Mar. 2017

Richard Novitch argues before SJC on constitutional challenge to Alimony Reform Act

Richard M. Novitch argued before the Supreme Judicial Court in a case challenging the retroactive application of the durational limits of the Alimony Reform Act of 2011.

Mr. Novitch asserted to the state's highest court in Popp v. Popp that applying the law's durational limits to terminate alimony payments previously negotiated and approved by a Family Court judge violated his client's substantive due process rights protected and guaranteed by state and federal constitutional law.

His client is appealing a lower court order that imposed a durational limit on the time she is to receive alimony payments, even though those limits had not been bargained for previously.

Subsequent to the Alimony Reform Act becoming law, his client's ex-husband filed a complaint seeking to reduce the amount of his alimony obligations.  After a three-day trial, the Probate Court not only reduced his obligations, but imposed a term limit on them.

As part of the same case, the SJC is also considering whether the Alimony Reform Act unconstitutionally shifts the burden of proof to alimony recipients to justify the continuation of the very support they negotiated for previously.

Mr. Novitch assists clients in all aspects of domestic relations law, including complex matrimonial matters.  He has tried numerous cases in Probate and Family Courts in Massachusetts, and has been involved in numerous appeals.