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Massachusetts Criminal Procedure Rule 38: Disability of Judge

(Applicable to Superior Court and jury sessions in District Court)

[Disclaimer]

(a) During Trial. If by reason of death, sickness, or other disability the judge before whom a jury trial has commenced is unable to proceed with the trial, any other judge of that court or properly assigned to that court, upon certifying in writing that he has familiarized himself with the record of the trial, may proceed with and finish the trial.

(b) Receipt of Verdict. Any judge of a court or any judge properly assigned to that court may receive a verdict of the jury.

(c) After Verdict or Finding of Guilt. If by reason of absence, unavailability, death, sickness, or other disability the judge before whom the defendant has been tried is unable to perform the duties to be performed by the judge after a verdict or finding of guilt, any other judge of that court or properly assigned to that court may perform those duties; but if the other judge is satisfied that he cannot perform those duties because he did not preside at the trial or for any other reason, he may, in his discretion or upon motion of the defendant, order a new trial.