Verification- Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
- Last verified: 8/09/2012
- Current status is Active
- This attorney has no record of public discipline.
- This attorney has certified that he or she is covered by professional liability insurance.
Boston University School of Law, J.D., 1986
University of Michigan, B.A., 1981
American Bar Association
Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys (MATA)
About Alan Fanger
Alan received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan in 1981 and his law degree from the Boston University School of Law in 1986. Prior to attending law school, Alan worked in the newspaper business as both a sportswriter and copy editor. Alan started his own practice in 1989 after nearly three years of law firm experience.
Alan is a member of the American Bar Association and the Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys (MATA). Since 2008 he has been co-chair of MATA’s monthly luncheon speaker series and has given presentations to that group. More recently Alan was a panelist at a Massachusetts Bar Association (MBA) seminar on “Lawyers in Transition”; Alan’s presentation addressed new court rules and procedures for attorneys transitioning back into practice.
Honors and Awards
- SuperLawyer 2005
- SuperLawyer 2011
- SuperLawyer 2012
Attorney Alan Fanger has affirmed the following reviews are authentic.
"Alan Fanger is a highly talented attorney and on top of that a truly great guy. He handled my case with a level of conscientiousness, honesty and knowledge that put my worries to rest during a complex business dispute. Alan made himself easily accessible and went the extra mile to ensure I understood every detail of my case. The service was outstanding and I would highly recommend Alan to anyone in need of an attorney."
By Scott, a Business client
"Alan did a wonderful job for us in a very hard situation. He communicated very well and always was able to get back to us the same day. It is sometimes difficult to trust someone that you don't know but I would not hesitate to hire Alan. There is no one better!"
By Jennifer, a Contracts client
"It was a pleasure to work with Alan at a time when I was at a low point emotionally. Having to go through litigation was a difficult time for me as I did not know what to expect and Alan turned out to be a blessing. I was able to get through it knowing he was involved and looking out for my best interests."
By Michael, a Litigation client
"I always recommend Alan when one of my clients needs a civil litigator. With extremely high levels of both skill and integrity, Alan gets the job done. I'd hire him to represent myself without giving it a second thought"
By Paul N.
Legal Questions & Answers
The developer is likely required to have turned over control of the association to the unit owners, as the “turnover” event has already occurred. I recommend that you review the declaration of trust and follow the procedures set forth in that document for convening a meeting of the unit owners for the purpose of electing trustees. Once trustees are elected, their status as trustees should be reflected in a document filed in the Norfolk County Registry of Deeds. Once elected, the trustees will have the right to advance a claim against the master insurance policy. Even in the absence of trustee elections, individual unit owners still have the right to contact the insurance company, though the insurer may not wish to deal with the individual owners.
I am sorry about your loss. Under Massachusetts law, a will is required to be published in the probate court in which the decedent was “domiciled” (as of his or her death) within 30 days of the date of death. Shortly after publication of the will all heirs at law (usually spouses and children) are required to be sent a notice of both the probate proceeding and the requested appointment of the executor nominated by the will. That notice provides a date by which you or your attorney must file an “appearance”. This date is critical; if you do not file a notice of appearance by that date, you lose the ability to contest either the nomination of executor or the validity of the will. The notice of appearance is nothing more than a document with the name of the court, the case number and a title “Notice of Appearance” and stating that you are appearing in the matter. There is then a second and even more critical deadline. That deadline is the date by which you must file what is known as an “affidavit of objections”. The affidavit must be filed no later than 30 days after you file the notice of appearance. In the affidavit of objections, you are required to state under oath all of the reasons why you believe the will is invalid and/or the executor should not be appointed. These could range from lack of mental capacity to undue influence or even forgery to, in the case of executor appointment, a prior conviction of a crime involving fraud or theft. I highly recommend that you consult with an attorney at least for the preparation of this affidavit (which must contain certain “magical” language), if not for the filing of the appearance.
Since your brother benefited from the change in the will, if he was managing your uncle’s finances or was otherwise involved in his care, the burden shifts to him to demonstrate that the change in the will was NOT the product of undue influence. However, you must take the first step by challenging the validity of the will. There are strict deadlines for doing this and the failure to adhere to those deadlines can be fatal to your claim. Please view my video on my website regarding Undue Influence for more information.
Home inspection reports typically have a host of disclaimer language, typically on the first page. It is unlikely that the disclaimer relieves the inspector from liability for failing to identify the proper heat source for the home, and thus it would appear that you have a viable claim against the inspector based on what you have described. Inspectors are required to carry liability insurance, so you would likely be dealing with the inspector’s insurance company on any claim. A claim against the broker would be much more challenging. Brokers can only be held responsible for what they know. So, for example, if the seller reported to the broker that the heating source was gas, and simply passed along that information, the broker would not be legally responsible for conveying false information. You would have to establish that the broker had to have known by visual inspection of the home or the seller’s testimony that he/she told the broker there was electric heat. If you can establish this then the broker could be liable for up to three times damages, together with attorney’s fees.
Here are a few options available to you: (a) you can obtain your own estimate (though it should come from a highly reputable contractor, preferably one who has done work for insurance companies) ; (b) you could hire a “public adjuster” (a claims rep who would represent your interests but who would probably charge 10 percent of the payment as his/her fee, so perhaps only worth it if there’s a great deal of damage); or (c) you could hire an attorney on an hourly basis (this would be in conjunction with option (a).
I am an experienced probate attorney in the Boston metro west area. I would welcome the opportunity to discuss your case. Please call me direct at 617.332.3456. Thank you.
A very common legal matter in Probate litigation is a Will Contest. This is when an interested party challenges the validity of a Will. The question of Undue influence often arises — Did someone close to the deceased convince him or her to rewrite the will (to the exclusion of others or their own personal benefit)? Given the information you've provided, it is likely that you could successfully challenge this Will under the theory of Undue Influence.
A person who executes a will has the right to keep the will private until he/she dies. The policy behind this right is that the person could change his/her mind about the disposition of assets at any time prior to death. You may learn more at my website http://www.LawFang.com
Your rights as a Massachusetts homeowner against a contractor depend on whether the contractor was registered with the state of Massachusetts as a Home Improvement Contractor. If the contractor is in fact registered, you have two very important rights:
1. You are automatically eligible to have your dispute submitted to arbitration through the Mass. Executive Office of Consumer Affairs. The arbitration is not free of charge but the arbitrator’s rates are much lower than in normal arbitration (about $100 per hour per party). Arbitration is informal and much faster than having your case in court.
2. You are automatically entitled to apply to the Home Improvement Contractor Guaranty Fund for up to $10,000 in relief in the event that you obtain a judgment or arbitration award and the contractor is found to be uncollectible or bankrupt.
You may visit my website to learn more: www.LawFang.com
Attorney Alan Fanger serves the entire Greater Boston and Boston metro west region including Arlington, Boston, Braintree, Brookline, Cambridge, Canton, Concord, Dedham, Dover, Framingham, Lexington, Milton, Natick, Needham, Newton, Norwood, Quincy, Sherborn, Sudbury, Waltham, Wayland, Wellesley, and Weston, Massachusetts.