H.874 An Act relative to the costs of appeals by the Commonwealth

Type:  Criminal Justice 

Currently in Massachusetts, taxpayers reimburse privately retained defense attorneys in cases where the Commonwealth appeals, regardless of whether the Commonwealth wins or loses.  In cases where the defendant has persuaded a judge to rule in error, taxpayers should not have to pay privately retained attorneys to have that erroneous decision reversed. This legislation limits a defendant’s right to reimbursement of attorney’s fees only in cases where the Commonwealth loses after an appeal pursued by the Commonwealth.