Burns & Levinson LLP

Boston Massachusetts 2110

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Law Firm Name
Burns & Levinson LLP
125 Summer Street
Boston, Massachusetts, 2110
United States

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About Burns & Levinson LLP

Ann Hetherwick (?Hether?) Cahill?s litigation practice focuses on probate and trust litigation, family law, guardianships and conservatorships, and appeals. In probate litigation matters, Hether has represented clients in will contests, actions involving the interpretation and termination of trusts, and trustee removal actions. She has represented fiduciaries and beneficiaries regarding the proper administration of trusts and estates. Matters representative of her probate and family law practice include: winning summary judgment on behalf of a client involved in a will contest, resulting in the Probate and Family Court striking the objector?s affidavit of objections and appointing our client as personal representative of the estate; obtaining settlement of a multi-party will contest involving cross-petitions to probate two different wills, resulting in the appointment of a neutral personal representative; obtaining settlement of an estate mismanagement action on behalf of our client, the sole beneficiary of a large estate, including obtaining a court-ordered removal of the personal representative; winning summary judgment on behalf of our clients, professional trustees, thereby dismissing claims for breach of fiduciary duty and violation of the Massachusetts consumer protection statute made by the income beneficiary alleging that she was denied discretionary distributions of trust principal, and obtaining a voluntary dismissal of the remaining claim for removal; expanding the powers of a conservator to enable the fiduciary to execute a trust to carry out her incapacitated father's wishes; obtaining appointment of our clients as guardian and conservator of their incapacitated daughter; negotiating a prenuptial agreement involving trust interests; settling a complex divorce involving business interests. As a former law clerk on the Massachusetts Appeals Court, Hether utilizes her appellate experience and research and writing skills to represent both appellants and appellees. She is a member of the post-conviction panel of the Committee for Public Counsel Services to represent criminal defendants on appeal. Hether?s appellate experience includes: at the Supreme Judicial Court, winning an appeal on behalf of a client, a corporate board member, where no evidence supported the trial judge?s finding that he acted with ?actual malice,? the heightened burden a plaintiff must prove in asserting a claim of tortious interference with contractual relations. The Supreme Judicial Court vacated the judgment, as well as all related awards of damages and attorney?s fees, in favor of our client; and at the Massachusetts Appeals Court, obtaining an affirmance of a trial court order denying the defendant?s motion to set aside a multi-million dollar judgment, which had been awarded to our client. Hether is ranked at the highest level of legal ability and ethics, ?AV,? in the benchmark Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory. In 2009, 2011, 2012, 2017, and 2018 Hether was named a ?Rising Star? in the ?Massachusetts Super Lawyers? list published by the Thomson Reuters rating service in Boston Magazine. The Rising Star award is limited to 2.5% of lawyers in Massachusetts under the age of 40 who have been practicing for less than 10 years. In 2014, Hether was selected to join the Editorial Board of the Massachusetts Law Review, the longest continually run law review in the country, on which she currently serves as the Case Comments Editor. Her publications include: Cy Pres and Deviation, MCLE Fiduciary Litigation in the Probate Court 4th Edition (April 2019); ?Limits on Attorney?s Fees,? Massachusetts Bar Association Fifth Annual Probate Law Conference (Nov. 2017); ?Using Guardianship of Minors as Leverage to Change Addiction Issues of Parents,? Massachusetts Bar Association Fifth Annual Probate Law Conference (Nov. 2017); ?Leveraging Addiction Recovery in Parents by Use of Guardianship of Minors,? Boston Spirit Magazine (Sept./Oct. 2017); ?Guardianship,? MCLE Using Estate Planning to Leverage Treatment of Addiction & Mental Illness (April 2017); Cy Pres and Deviation, MCLE Fiduciary Litigation in the Probate Court 3rd Edition (Nov. 2016); ?Equity Actions to Determine Ownership, Recover Assets,? Massachusetts Bar Association Fourth Annual Probate Law Conference (Nov. 2016); Blog: It's Still Not Too Late to Act! Divorce Law Monitor, (June 1, 2016); Blog: It's Not Too Late to Act! Divorce Law Monitor, (April 15, 2016); Case Comment: ?Abolishing the Distinction Between Natural and Unnatural Accumulations of Snow and Ice When Determining Negligence of Property Owner, Papadopoulos v. Target Corp., 457 Mass. 368 (2010),? 94 Mass. L. Rev. No. 1, 20 (Sept. 2011) Book Review: ?When Law Fails: Making Sense of Miscarriages of Justice,? 93 Mass. L. Rev. No. 1, 261 (June 2010) (reviewing Charles J. Ogletree and Austin Sarat); Case Comment: ?Combining Non-Consecutive Periods of Employment to Qualify as ?Eligible Employee? under the Family Medical Leave Act, Rucker v. Lee Holding Co., 471 F.3d 6 (1st Cir. 2006),? 91 Mass. L. Rev. No. 4, 182 (Jan. 2009); Article: ?Admissibility of Hearsay Statements to Police: Davis v. Washington and Hammon v. Indiana,? 50 Boston B. J. 17 (Nov./Dec. 2006); and Case Comment: ?Constitutional Law?Spies Barred from Enforcing Espionage Agreements with the United States?Tenet v. Doe, 125 S. Ct. 1230 (2005),? 29 Suffolk Transnat?l L. Rev. 371 (Summer 2006). Hether joined the Private Client Group of Burns & Levinson in January 2016, after working at Sally & Fitch LLP for nearly eight years. Prior to private practice, she served as a law clerk to the Honorable Joseph A. Trainor of the Massachusetts Appeals Court for two years. She is a graduate of Skidmore College (B.A., philosophy/government, 2000) and Suffolk University Law School (J.D., 2006). While at Suffolk, Hether was a member of the Suffolk Transnational Law Review, received the Best Brief Award in her Legal Practice Skills Course, served as a student prosecutor at the East Boston District Attorney?s Office, and interned in the civil division at the U.S. Attorney?s Office in Boston. She worked as a litigation legal assistant at the law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP in New York prior to law school and in Boston during law school. In May 2016, she co-taught a course Guardianship, Conservatorship, and Special Needs Planning through Newton Community Education. In June and September 2016 and May and October 2017, she co-taught a course concerning estate planning and litigation through Newton Community Education. In October 2015, 2016, and 2017, Hether participated as a panelist on the MCLE Taking Depositions Workshop. She has been involved in the Boston Chamber of Commerce Women's Leadership Program (2016-2017 year), Brookline Community Foundation's Professional Advisors Committee (since 2017), Dana-Farber Leadership Council, Suffolk University Law School by serving as a mentor to law school students, and Kids In Need of Defense (?KIND?) by representing children pro bono in immigration cases. Hether is admitted to the bars of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts, and the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals. She is also a member of the Massachusetts and Boston Bar Associations.

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