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Gov. Baker Nominates Two Boston Attorneys to the Probate and Family Court

Massachusetts divorce lawyer Jason V. Owens reviews Charlie Baker’s recent judicial appointments and lineup changes at the Plymouth and Norfolk Probate and Family Courts.

In judicial news, Charlie Baker has nominated attorneys Melanie Gargas and Lee Peterson to the Massachusetts Probate and Family Court. Attorney Gargas, of Gargas & Associates in Boston, and Attorney Pederson, of McCarter & English in Boston, must still be approved by the Governor’s counsel before they are assigned a seat at a county Probate and Family Court. Baker also announced that he was recommending Hon. Geoffrey German, a Probate and Family Court judge sitting in Springfield, for a seat in Worcester. (It is not altogether clear whether Judge German is required to undergo the nomination process again for a transfer to another county.)

Changes in Judicial Lineups at Plymouth and Norfolk Probate and Family Courts

On the South Shore, in Plymouth and Norfolk counties, upcoming changes to the judicial rosters include the retirement of longtime First Justice of the Plymouth Probate and Family Court, Hon. Catherine P. Sabaitis, at the end of 2015. In addition, Hon. Jennifer M. Ulwick will be transferring from Norfolk County to Essex County in February 2016, where she will serve as the new First Justice of the Essex Probate and Family Court. Details on which judges will be replacing Judge Sabaitis and Judge Ulwick in Plymouth and Norfolk counties following their respective departures have not yet been finalized. Both judges will be sorely missed on the South Shore.

UPDATE #1 (1/4/2016): We now know that Hon. George F. Phelan has replaced Judge Sabaitis, at least for the time being, at the Plymouth Probate and Family Court.

UPDATE #2 (2/5/2016): Although not yet officially confirmed, we hear that Hon. Elaine M. Moriarty, late of the Suffolk Probate and Family Court, will be replacing Judge Ullwick at the Norfolk Probate and Family Court later this month.

About the Author: Jason V. Owens is a Massachusetts divorce lawyer and Massachusetts family law attorney for Lynch & Owens, located in Hingham, Massachusetts.

Schedule a consultation with Jason V. Owens today at (781) 253-2049 or send him an email

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