Maria Rockwell

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Maria Rockwell focuses her practice on all aspects of probate and domestic relations cases as well as all aspects of civil appeals. She works with clients from the initial interview through settlement negotiations, trial, post-judgment motions, appeals and collection of judgments. Clients turn to Maria not only to protect their interests, from custody to proper distribution of estate post-separation, but also to guide them through challenging life changes.

Several of Maria’s cases have resulted in published decisions in the Massachusetts Appeals Court and Supreme Judicial Court. The Probate and Family Court has appointed Maria to represent incompetent litigants and serve as guardian ad litem to investigate and report to the Court involving matters relating to wills, trusts, probate accounts and child related issues in custody disputes.

Maria currently serves on the Committee for Public Counsel Services’ Children and the Law Program appellate panel. She has participated in numerous continuing legal education programs and also served on a panelist on seminars relating to paternity, guardianships and trusts.

Admitted to Practice: 

Massachusetts
Supreme Court of the United States

Representative Experience:

  • Negotiated favorable property division with respect to unvested equity compensation and allocation of the same at a substantially reduced alimony percentage
  • Successfully achieved Appeals Court result of non-contempt based on ambiguity in the Separation Agreement
  • Obtained favorable judgment against a fiduciary after a four day trial based on claims of undue influence and breach of fiduciary duty, resulting in the return of $1,000,000 to the Probate Estate. Successfully defended the judgment and Motion to Stay in the Appeals Court, resulting in final resolution of the case
  • Successfully defended a Complaint for Contempt after a two day evidentiary hearing, resulting in a finding of non-contempt and denial of the plaintiff’s request for counsel fees
  • Commenced litigation on behalf of a former spouse who paid alimony in excess of the durational limits where the judgment entered prior to the passage of the Alimony Reform Act, resulting in the termination of the obligor’s lifetime alimony obligation

Background: 

Prior to joining Bowditch & Dewey, Maria was a law clerk to the Justices of the Massachusetts Probate and Family Court for several years, working directly with the justices of the court on a wide variety of probate, family and equity issues in Worcester, Norfolk, Plymouth, Middlesex, Barnstable and Bristol Counties.

Professional/Community Affiliations: 

  • Board of Directors, Friendly House
  • Worcester Bar Association: Probate Court Committee, Bench-Bar Committee, Young Lawyers
  • MetroWest Women's Bar Committee