Glossary of Mass distinctions-con law

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Advisory opinions and certified questions
1. no advisory opinions

2. Will answer certified questions from fed court on unsettled questoins of MA law

3. will answer important questions from gov, legislture, exec council
home-rule peition
town may request that MA forbid sale of alcohol within borders
Suspect classifications
Strict scrutiny includes:

religious, ethnic, handicap, sex based discrimination

**only apply when state and local laws
**age not suspect
declaratoin on handicap
1. gets strict scrutiny

2. forbids discrimination against handicapped person in any program or activity in commonwealth
Equality under law
Equality under law can't be abridged or denied based on sex, race, color, creed, or national origin
MA rational basis test
Balance harm to disadvantaged class
public purpose of classification

**more bite than fed
**classification survives if any facts can be conceived to justify it
Same sex marriage
Denying marriage and protections to same sex couples is unconstitutional under MA consitution
free election protection
Declaration forbids state or private interference with electoral process
Freedom of religion
1. when burdens free exercise, must be narrowly tailored to compelling governmental interest

2. neutral law, claimaint must show (a) sincerely held religious belief (b) conflicts with and is burdened by state requriement

State can rebut by showing:
unusually important gov goal and exemption for claimant would hinder fulfillment of goal
Chapter 151B
Employment discrimination only permissible when based on "bona fide occupational qualification"
Chapter 151B on employment
Employment discrimination only permissible when based on "bona fide occupational qualification"
Chapter 151B on housing
forbids discrimination against any protected class in sale or lease of housing
Chapter 151B on credit and services
Companies that issue credit services can't discrimination against protected class OR

Practice economic discrimination like refusing to lend money in certain neighborhoods
Protected classes under Chapter 151B
race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, hanidcapped, age (when over 40), marital status
Age discrimination under 151B
Only protects those over 40

* mandatory retirement programs forbidden unless plan equals at least 44000 or tenured professor

- don't protect against credit providers
Handicap under 151B
Housing and meployers must make reasonable accommpdations, meaning won't impose undue financial or administrative burden on employer AND

wont' require employer to waive or disregard specific job functions
Sex discrimination under 151B
Forbids job discrimination based on pregnancy or sex-related medical conditions

--can use sick leave during/after pregnancy
--unpaid leave during birth
--reasonably equivalent position upon return
Sexual harassment under 151B
No hostile work environment
Includes same-sex
151B on sexual orientation
Can't discrimination in awardin child custody

Doesn't protect homosexual marriage so cmps can deny benefits to gay partners
151B on religion
can't impose condition of employment that would require individual to violate sincerely held religions belief

**focus on whether sincerely held
Procedure of 151B
1. file complaint with MCAD w/in 6 mths (or continuing violation theory)

2. After iwth MCAD for 90 days or consent of commissioner, can file with superior court
Failure to file timely 151B complaint with MCAD
Bars all 151B remedies

But not other common law or statutory claims
Burdens of proof under 151B
typical burden shifting
1. p prevents prima facie case
2. d produces legitimate nondiscrimiantory reason
3. p shows pretext and discriminatory motive
Remedies for 151B violation
injunctive relief and compensatory damages
charitable immunity and 151B
charitable immunity cap on damages doesn't apply to actions udner 151B
MA equal rights act
all persons have right to

1) make and enforce contracts
2) purchase, lease, sell, real and personal property
3) equal beneit of laws
MA civil rights act
forbids any person from interfereing or attempting to interfree with any right secured under MA or US constitution through threats, intimidation, or coercion

-includes any right with origin in fed or state statute or constitution

--d must have forced or sought to force plaintiff to do something
MA equal pay act
prohibits wage discrimination based on sex

Can't pay men and women different wages for "work of like or comparable character or work of liek or comparable operations"

--maternity leave must be given
MA public accommodation law
forbids housing in any place of public resort, accommdoation, or amusement

--includes private orgs taht own or lease space and highly selective in membership
injunction regulating speech
1. injunction restraining litigant from discussing case in media is prior restraint on speech

2. only valid if compelling interest with no reasonable, less restirctive alternative

3. general interest in mainttaining child anonymity is not compelling to sustain injunction. Must show harmful effect of disclosure on kids
regs in residential areas
public housing policy prohibiting door to door and soliciting violates rt to recieve and distribute communications
freedom of speech in public school
protects expressoin of studnets unless causes disruptoin ro disorder in school, even lewd or vulgar
statute imposing crim liabiltiy for soliciting contributions and peaceful begging
overbroad and unreasonable content based restriction on expressive activity
right to bear arms
no rt in mass declaration fo rights for private citizen to have arms SO ok to require license.

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