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Massachusetts Supplemental Probate and Family Court Rule 52: Findings by the Court

[Disclaimer]

In all cases not governed by the Mass.R.Civ.P.,

(a) Effect. Except in actions to which G.L. c. 208, § 34, applies, the court shall upon written motion made prior to final argument, providing either party or the court has requested appointment of a stenographer pursuant to Rule 18 or the trial was recorded electronically, find the facts specially and state separately its conclusions of law thereon. Where the court enters judgment pursuant to G.L. c. 208, § 34 it shall issue findings of fact and conclusions of law thereon within sixty (60) days of the filing of a notice of appeal. Requests for findings are not necessary for purposes of review. Findings of fact shall not be set aside unless clearly erroneous, and due regard shall be given to the opportunity of the Trial Court to judge the credibility of the witnesses. The findings of a master, to the extent that the court adopts them, shall be considered as the findings of the court. If an opinion or memorandum of decision is filed, it will be sufficient if the findings of fact and conclusions of law appear therein. Findings of fact and conclusions of law are unnecessary on decisions of motions except as provided in Mass.R.Civ.P. 41(b)(2).

(b) Amendment. Upon motion of a party made not later than 10 days after entry of its findings the court may amend its findings or make additional findings and may amend the judgment accordingly. The motion may be made with a motion for a new trial. When findings of fact are made in actions tried by the court without a jury, the question of the sufficiency of the evidence to support the findings may thereafter be raised whether or not the party raising the question has made in the trial court an objection to such findings or has made a motion to amend them or a motion for judgment.

(c) Transcript of Proceedings Upon Request for Special Findings. Upon a written motion under paragraph (a) of this rule, the party making such request shall order from the stenographer and file with the court the original of a transcript of such parts of the proceedings not already on file as the court may determine material to any facts essential to a determination of the case. At the time of ordering, a party shall make satisfactory arrangements with the stenographer for payment of the cost of the transcript.

As added December 14, 2011, effective January 2, 2012.

Reporter's Notes (2012): The amended rule makes Mass.R.Dom.Rel.P. 52 applicable in cases not governed by Mass.R.Civ.P.