HOUSE DOCKET, NO. 1710        FILED ON: 1/17/2019

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 3274


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



Michael S. Day and Marjorie C. Decker


To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in General
Court assembled:

The undersigned legislators and/or citizens respectfully petition for the adoption of the accompanying bill:

An Act relative to access to justice.






Michael S. Day

31st Middlesex

Marjorie C. Decker

25th Middlesex

Jack Patrick Lewis

7th Middlesex

Jason M. Lewis

Fifth Middlesex

Steven Ultrino

33rd Middlesex

Carolyn C. Dykema

8th Middlesex

Tram T. Nguyen

18th Essex

Thomas M. Stanley

9th Middlesex

Adrian C. Madaro

1st Suffolk

Tommy Vitolo

15th Norfolk

Patricia D. Jehlen

Second Middlesex

Joseph A. Boncore

First Suffolk and Middlesex

Mike Connolly

26th Middlesex

Denise Provost

27th Middlesex

David M. Rogers

24th Middlesex

Russell E. Holmes

6th Suffolk

Carlos González

10th Hampden

Natalie M. Higgins

4th Worcester

Sal N. DiDomenico

Middlesex and Suffolk

Jennifer E. Benson

37th Middlesex

Tami L. Gouveia

14th Middlesex

Carmine Lawrence Gentile

13th Middlesex

Mindy Domb

3rd Hampshire

Andres X. Vargas

3rd Essex

Lori A. Ehrlich

8th Essex

Liz Miranda

5th Suffolk

Daniel R. Cullinane

12th Suffolk

Sean Garballey

23rd Middlesex

Jonathan Hecht

29th Middlesex

James B. Eldridge

Middlesex and Worcester

Kay Khan

11th Middlesex

William J. Driscoll, Jr.

7th Norfolk

Michelle L. Ciccolo

15th Middlesex

Daniel J. Ryan

2nd Suffolk

Stephan Hay

3rd Worcester

James K. Hawkins

2nd Bristol

Brendan P. Crighton

Third Essex

Julian Cyr

Cape and Islands

HOUSE DOCKET, NO. 1710        FILED ON: 1/17/2019

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 3274

By Representatives Day of Stoneham and Decker of Cambridge, a petition (accompanied by bill, House, No. 3274) of Michael S. Day, Marjorie C. Decker and others relative to interviews or questioning conducted for immigration investigations or enforcement purposes.  The Judiciary.


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



In the One Hundred and Ninety-First General Court



An Act relative to access to justice.


Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

SECTION 1. Section 24 of chapter 37 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2016 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting after clause (e) the following clause:-

(f) federal detainees housed in their facilities to and from the several divisions or departments of the trial court, pursuant to a valid state court writ of habeas corpus.

SECTION 2. Chapter 147 of the General Laws is hereby amended by inserting after section 62 the following section:-

Section 63. (a) An interview or any questioning conducted for immigration investigation or enforcement purposes of a person in the custody of any state or local law enforcement agency, sheriff’s office, the department of correction, or Massachusetts court, shall take place only with the written informed consent of the person in custody, unless otherwise required by federal law. If the person in custody indicates that they wish to have an attorney present for an interview with a federal agent, the custodian shall allow them to contact such attorney, and in the case that no attorney can be present, the interview shall not take place. The custodian agency shall not be responsible for the payment of the person’s attorney’s fees and expenses.

(b) The office of the attorney general shall prepare a uniform consent form in English and other languages commonly spoken in Massachusetts for use pursuant to subsection (a), which shall: (i) explain the purpose of the interview, that the interview is voluntary, that the person may decline to be interviewed or may choose to be interviewed only with an attorney present, and that the person may decline to sign any documents presented to them at the interview; and (ii) document the person’s consent or lack thereof, whether an interview took place, and, if so, whether an attorney was present. Custodian agencies shall make their best efforts to provide a form in a language that the person understands, and to provide interpretation if needed.  Consent forms shall be public records as defined in clause Twenty-sixth of section 7 of chapter 4, provided that the name, address, phone number and other personal identifying information regarding the interview subject shall not be a public record. 

(c) The provisions of paragraphs (a) and (b) shall not apply to persons in federal custody who are held in a state or local facility pursuant to an intergovernmental contract.

(d) Court officers, clerks, probation department employees, other trial court administrative personnel, prosecutors, and personnel of the prosecutor’s office, may provide federal agencies or agents with information relating to any person involved in matters before the court only upon request and in the same manner and to the same extent as such information is lawfully made available to the general public. Such officials shall not otherwise notify federal agencies or agents of the presence of individuals attending proceedings in Massachusetts courthouses, unless required by federal law.  

(e) The superior court in the county where the person is held shall be authorized to hear any claim in law or equity arising from violation of this section.

SECTION 3. Section 3 of chapter 258B of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2016 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting after clause (w) the following clause:-

(x) for victims, family members, and witnesses, to not be asked by a law enforcement agency, the prosecutor, personnel in the prosecutor’s office, trial court personnel, or parole, probation or corrections officials about their immigration status, or the immigration status of their family members, unless such inquiry is required by federal or state law; provided that a judge or magistrate may make such inquiries as are necessary to adjudicate matters within their jurisdiction. The court may enter orders or conditions to maintain limited disclosure of any information regarding immigration status as it deems appropriate to protect the liberty interests of victims, family members and witnesses.