Our family recently found ourselves involved with DCF. The day we got the call was honestly a nightmare. We knew nothing about DCF aside from what we heard in the news, but we learned really quickly that they can be extremely deceptive and DANGEROUS. The situation stemmed from a bitter custody dispute and ultimately ended up involving the DA’s office. We had a family law attorney and a criminal attorney. Neither of them wanted to, or were capable of helping us deal with DCF. Luckily, we got a recommendation from a social worker friend of ours for Mike Rich at The Law Office of Michael L. Rich.
From day one, Mike was extremely attentive, thoughtful, and calming in the midst of chaos. My first contact was via voicemail, and although he was traveling he got back to me that night. I explained our situation and Mike informed me of our rights, and how he should proceed. We decided to retain his services, and he sent us a brief questionnaire as well as a ton of resources we could use to research the process and rules/laws governing DCF.
Mike was there for our meetings with the DCF worker, and he was a relentless advocate for our rights. We also had Mike handle our DCF Fair Hearing. We were pleasantly surprised by his demeanor during the hearing. Mike is a gentleman, laid back, and very friendly but not the least bit afraid of confrontation when the situation called for it. It’s also worth noting that since he has been working with DCF for so long, he has a rapport with the hearing officers and other players involved, which I think helps ease the tension of the situation.
Mike was one of three lawyers we had during this ordeal (DCF defense attorney, family lawyer, and criminal). His billing practices were BY FAR the most transparent and fair. When he sends you a statement, the detail he puts into each one is almost unbelievable. He is very honest and upfront about the charges, and always asked permission to purchase transcripts and other necessary expenditures outside of his billable hours. Mike definitely restored our faith in lawyers after a few less satisfactory experiences.
My wife and I honestly can’t say enough good things about Mike. During one of the worst experiences of our life, he was definitely a bright spot. If you find yourself involved with DCF and are considering hiring an attorney, do not hesitate to call Mike at MichaelRichLaw.com.
Good luck, and god bless!
Mr. N. & Ms. R. B. (DCF Assessment and Fair Hearing representation) October 2018 to March 2019.
Thank you very much for your thoughtful, honest and comprehensive email response regarding our situation. My wife and I suspected we would not have any standing in this matter but our interest in seeing the child who is like a grandchild to us is so strong that we felt as though we had to try everything possible. Although we were hopeful there might be a path forward, my wife and I were nevertheless impressed with the time you took to draft a response and the empathy that came through in your email.
Thank you again for taking the time out of your busy schedule to provide us with this information based on your extensive experience in this area. The very positive reviews you received are clearly well deserved. We will keep you and your firm in mind and not hesitate to contact you should we have a need for representation in the future.
Mr. A. G. (free, brief consultation) February 2019.
Michael, Thank you for your fine candid advice and counsel. It made a difference in the outcome of the proceedings. You gave me information I used to convey to the court that convinced the judge to award temporary custody back to my kids. We had the right expert lined up based on your recommendation … but he was not even needed. Please know you made a difference in the return of our grandchild to her loving family. We thank you once again. Best regards,
Mr. S. G. (Care and Protection advice and referrals) October to December 2018
Mike recently helped us to successfully resolve a DCF case. We were very impressed by his professional knowledge and experience in handling our case. We feel so lucky that we picked Mike to represent us and appreciate very much for his help.
Mr. and Mrs. W. (DCF Investigation 51A representation) August to September 2018
It’s been a pleasure working with you. You are a great lawyer. Thank you so much!
Ms. H. G. (Representation as Plaintiff in Abuse Prevention 209A Order extension hearing) January 2018
Thank you for all your help! We did get a letter from [DCF] saying they unsupported all [the allegations] … . We’re feeling grateful and relieved. Thank you for being such a supportive element in this brief and nerve wracking adventure. Wishing you great continued success in your business of helping people!
Mr. & Mrs. D & S. E. (DCF Investigation 51A representation) October to November 2016
Thank you very much! You were a true professional and clearly the right lawyer for this job. This whole process was a great source of distress for us and your calm, experienced hand really brought us through the darkness and confusion.
Mr. & Mrs. S. & M. C. (DCF Investigation 51A/B representation) March to April 2016
We want to thank you for all of your efforts on our behalf. While we still have several challenges to face, eliminating DCF from the list is a tremendous help. It will allow us to focus on our son’s health and education, and it will reduce the stress level for him. I don’t believe we could have successfully navigated these issues without your help. We really appreciate your support.
Mr. & Mrs. D. (DCF Investigations 51A/B representation) November 2015 to March 2016
Mike, I am very appreciative of your professional help to deal with DCF for me. You are the one who listens to me and understands my needs. Your rich professional knowledge in the field provided strong support in my case, and I feel very comfortable and fortunate to work with you. Although I don’t know at the moment what the final result will be, my mind has become peaceful. If I could turn back the clock, I would hire you from the very beginning when DCF started the investigation.
Ms. H. L. (DCF Fair Hearing representation), ongoing from November 2014
Thank you so much for your help and guidance…you’ve been invaluable to us!
Dr. & Mrs. R. (DCF Fair Hearing and Juvenile Court representation), May 2013 to May 2014
Thanks Michael for the excellent support you have provided on this matter. We are ever grateful for that and appreciate it tremendously. (See also http://www.avvo.com/attorneys/02452-ma-michael-rich-1434893/reviews.html#399371).
Mr. & Mrs. N. & D. S. (DCF Initial Assessment, 51A/B representation), March to April 2014
Attorney Rich helped lead us through a very traumatic experience with much kindness and professionalism.
Mr. & Mrs. S. & P. B. (Child abuse investigation), May to June 2013
Attorney Rich, you are a highly respected lawyer, have handled DSS/DCF matters progressively and if I were rich I would hire you in a minute. I personally want to thank you for the time you took to answer quite a few questions regarding my matter on the Avvo website. Thank you very much for the information you have extended to me. It was very generous of you. It is very difficult in this area to obtain counsel who have a high standard of representation with similar qualities and knowledge regarding DCF matters. Your community that you serve is very lucky to have you.
Mrs. D. K., (free, brief consultation), March 2014
We believe that your approach to child advocacy is extremely patient and thorough. We were extremely impressed with the amount of resources that are available to us. Your services have been quite extensive and very helpful. Thank you.
Mr. & Mrs. R. & G. P. (free, brief consultation), June 2011
I highly recommend Attorney Michael Rich. He rescued me from a wrongful accusation of neglect of my baby daughter and cleared my name with the Department of Children and Families (DCF) at a Fair Hearing. He was excellent overall, very responsive and extremely knowledgable.
Mr. A.B.N. (Fair Hearing client, November 2010)
I just wanted to thank you for taking the time to consult with me regarding my children’s CHINS case. I appreciate your valuable time and sharing your knowledge with me!
Ms. L. L. C. (free, brief consultation), October 2010
I had always been impressed by Mike’s responses to a wide variety of legal questions posted by average citizens on our local Arlington email lists. The fact that he enjoys helping strangers in his town to navigate in unfamiliar legal territory is a credit to his character. I approached Mike with a simple legal question, hoping to be pointed in a general direction, and was humbled by his response — which was a free consultation by email and provided me with an immense understanding of my situation. I am greatly thankful for his help; he is a genuine man who is greatly generous with his knowledge. I know the whole Arlington community benefits from his involvement here in town.
Ms. V.H.M., August 2010
After going through two other attorneys, I found Mr. Rich. He has the tenacity of a bull and the integrity to match, yet the cool, brilliance, knowledge and skill that is as wise as a serpent but stings like a bee. I was in an uphill battle after having had misguided counsel and as a result of his hard work and efforts, I won. He knows how to deal effectively with DCF. There is none better. I only wish that I had him on my case from the beginning. He’s the best!
Ms. B.R., May 2010
I do want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for all you have done, and all of the patience of which you extended. You will always remain in my thoughts and I will always appreciate the support you have given in every aspect.
Ms. C.H., January 2010
Thank you for your prompt and expert legal representation on behalf of me and my children. Due to your timely interventions, my children and I will remain united together as a happy family – which is as it should be.
Please accept our heartfelt thanks for your understanding, compassion, and valued support during our extremely stressful and difficult situation.
Mrs. D.P. and children. December 7, 2009
Thanks for all your help with me and (my daughter)… God has sent so many nice people into my life and you are sure one of them.
Ms. E.D. former client
Mike helped us understand a complicated family legal situation. He was available immediately when we needed him.
Ms. L.M. May 10, 2009
I have known Attorney Rich for nearly 20 years and consider him a friend and valued colleague. I have sought his opinion numerous times on matters involving the practice of juvenile law. Always, Attorney Rich has been responsive, extremely helpful and provided me with thoughtful guidance for which I am grateful. I would recommend him without hesitation to clients seeking representation in this specialty area.
Howard M. Fine, Attorney. February 2009
Attorney Rich actually works for the money! He is thorough, honest, dependable and never rude to his clients. He was able to help our family through a horrible encounter with the DSS (now DCF). His quiet, calm approach put us at ease and made it possible to gain positive attention for our family without a lot of tension and fanfare. He knew exactly what path to take in the form of experts and gave us solid advice that worked. We can not thank him enough for his diligence.
Anonymous, January 2009
Michael is a real down to earth lawyer – who gets the job done well! Michael worked with me on a case that was very emotional. He was compassionate, meeting with myself and family members. He resolved a bad situation in a quick and efficient manner and his help made what was a very difficult time in my life manageable. Thanks Michael Rich!
Ms. K.E. February 2009
Mike Rich is a dedicated, compassionate, and highly skilled lawyer. As his client endorsements show, he is well liked by his clients, who have benefitted from his compassion under extremely difficult circumstances and at the same time he gave them the highest level of legal skills.
Mary Rogers, Attorney, Salem, MA, September 2009
Michael L. Rich, Esq. is recommended in the highest degree possible. Our family came to Mike Rich by way of recommendation both through research and word of mouth. Attorney Rich represented us in a matter involving The Dept. of Social Services (MA), and our family. Being unfamiliar with, unaccustomed to “the system” we were very concerned, and had a feeling of of being small and powerless versus a system that was leviathan. Not only did Atty. Michael Rich inform us of and vigorously represent and defend our rights, he did so with greatest degree of professional skill combined with a principled personal touch that gave us relief and security, and a position of justice. Attorney Rich kept in regular communication with us, kept us entirely informed regarding all matters, including options, costs, and case history in such matters pertinent to our case. And Atty. Rich did so in a timely, responsive way. Our case was resolved to our satisfaction, justly, in a reasonable time frame.
Anonymous, January 2009
It has been great to work with Attorney Michael Rich. He is a consummate professional and I would highly recommend him as legal counsel. He also has a very informative easy to peruse web-site.
Anonymous, February, 2009
When I was looking for a lawyer, Michael Rich was the only person I found who didn’t treat me automatically as scum for having run afoul of DSS. He kept me well informed about my options, respected and listened to my suggestions when I had them, and kept things progressing when I was too overwhelmed to contribute any input. Ultimately, he was able to overturn a DSS decision in court for me. I’m still amazed that anyone could beat a system as stacked as DSS is, but Michael Rich can and did!
Anonymous, February 2009
Thank you so much for all your hard work on my behalf. Thank you for being the first person I encountered in this whole mess who didn’t instantly assume I was horribly guilty and a terrible parent for having gotten tangled up in the DSS web. Thank you for asking for my feedback and listening to my suggestions, as you prepared various documents for court, and thank you for making decisions at times I felt too overwhelmed to do so. Thank you for doing all the extra work to have the case impounded (especially impressive since you’d never done that before, and you figured out how to do it in the quick time frame I needed). And most of all, thank you for winning the case! Knowing that I have that off my record again seems like I have opened my future up again! And on a more basic level, I feel like I can finally enjoy my son’s childhood again, without worrying that all the time between now and when he turns 18 are years to be watching over my shoulders for DSS. For all this, and so much more, Thank You!!!
Ms. S.T. December, 2008
It is great that I get to tell you what a most excellent attorney I think you are, thank you once again for the work you did and tell you that the services, although probably able to be delivered by some others, were the best because of you, your professionalism blended with your personality and character. I mean it Mike, you’re the best, and always foremost in any opportunity presented where a recommendation for representation and help is sought.
Danny M., December 30, 2008
“Mike is a knowledgeable and zealous advocate, with whom I’ve worked for the past 10 years. I have personally observed his commitment to his clients, all of whom he treats with dignity and respect. Mike is a trusted colleague and good friend.”
Maria Ventullo, Attorney, November 3, 2008
After working with a mediator, Mike reviewed my divorce agreement, keeping an eye out for details that pertained to the welfare of my daughter. He did a timely and excellent review. I couldn’t have asked for better. Mike is caring and experienced. I recommend him highly.
Ms. S.M. November 14, 2008
Some of us are very wary of lawyers, thinking that we can never really get the help we need, or find anyone with the integrity or expertise that the situation demands. Mike Rich is an experienced attorney, and a family man who truly understands the legal system. He has worked long, hard, and very successfully to help real people deal with tough issues and bring positive outcomes. If you are facing challenging legal issues that involve children and family, Attorney Michael Rich is the man for the job.
Ms. B.F. March 9, 2009
My wife and I had the good fortune of being referred to Attorney Rich when we were struggling to find representation for a very complicated, interstate family court matter. Due to Michael’s expertise, reputation, and collegiate networking, our case was handled quickly, precisely, with results much more easily than we anticipated.
We were impressed with the level of respect, empathy, and knowledge Michael demonstrated during the course of our litigation.
We highly recommend attorney Rich to anyone seeking compassionate council with a results oriented approach.
I received a letter today stating that our case was closed and that the allegations of abuse were unsupported. Again, thank you for your help and be assured that if an opportunity arises for a referral, you shall have one.
It has been almost four years since you and Lynne started helping us in this long odyssey and we immensely appreciate your help. I shudder to think what would have happened without your guidance and encouragement.
My husband and I hired Attorney Mike Rich to defend our family against false DSS allegations. We were frightened and deeply concerned about our family and particularly, our children. Attorney Rich was a calm, methodical and determined force in the midst of the chaos that had become our lives. He listened intently and knew the facts of our case as well as we did. He not only fought for our family and won; he did it with a quiet insistence that kept a very difficult situation from spiraling out of control. Attorney Rich knows the DSS regulations and procedures as well as the applicable law. He is knowledgeable, determined and capable. He also has a vast amount of resources and the appropriate contacts for services that may be needed. For example, he put us in touch with a forensic social worker and other professionals that were needed to help prove our case. I can not say enough positive things about Attorney Rich and his work ethic. If you choose to hire him, he will fight for you and do so with the utmost integrity.
Mr. and Mrs. R.C.
The above comments are from emails, cards and letters received from clients and from recommendations posted on LinkedIn and Avvo. If you have comments about how Atty. Rich has helped you, please email them to him at firstname.lastname@example.org. All comments subject to review and provided space is available.