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Areas of Practice

Experienced Massachusetts Attorney Specializing in Estate Planning, Trusts, Estate and Gift Taxation, MassHealth, Probate and Elder Law

Since 1996, the Law Offices of Brian E. Barreira have been aiding families and individuals throughout the South Shore, Cape Cod and Greater Boston areas of Massachusetts.  Whether you need assistance in the areas of estate planning, wills, trusts, probate, elder law or MassHealth, Attorney Barreira is knowledgeable and available to help.  He has years of experience with the complicated process of applying for MassHealth and negotiating the appeals process through fair hearings and the Massachusetts court system.  He can advise you on whether or not probate avoidance is a good option for you. He can help with all aspects of estate planning such as durable powers of attorney, capital gains taxation and estate and gift taxation.  Taxation, governmental benefit, family issues and other legal issues involved in planning for disability or death can often be complex and interrelated, and all issues need to be evaluated as part of your overall estate plan. These issues and the transfer of real estate, business interests and other assets to the next generation is a common issue dealt with on a daily basis at the Law Offices of Brian E. Barreira. Additionally, he can help you identify needs for guardianship, conservatorship, and special needs trusts.  Attorney Barreira can also handle the litigation that is unfortunately sometimes involved with many of these issues.

A long reputation of excellence

In the years since Attorney Barreira began practicing law, he has amassed numerous accolades from his peers. His thorough knowledge of Massachusetts probate laws, as well as federal and Massachusetts tax, Medicaid and other governmental benefit laws, helps Attorney Barreira get favorable outcomes for his clients. Attorney Barreira is focused on helping you resolve your legal problems in an effective and cost-effective manner.

  • AV-Rated Since 1992, Attorney Barreira has been AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell®, the highest recognition possible in the legal industry, for his professionalism and ethics. He is listed in the Martindale-Hubbell Bar Registry of Preeminent Lawyers in the fields of “Elder Law” and “Trusts & Estates, Wills & Probate.”
  • Massachusetts SuperLawyer – Attorney Barreira is annually recognized by his peers (2009-2021) as a Massachusetts SuperLawyer, an honor bestowed on less than 5% of practicing lawyers.
  • Certified Elder Law Attorney – Although Massachusetts does not recognize legal specialties for certification, since 1996 Attorney Barreira has been a Certified Elder Law Attorney.  The certification was conducted by the non-profit ​National Elder Law Foundation, the only national organization accredited by the American Bar Association to certify attorneys in elder law. 
  • Editor and Co-Author of Massachusetts Estate Planning Treatise – Attorney Barreira is the Editor of Estate Planning for the Aging and Incapacitated Client in Massachusetts.  Published by Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, this 3-volume treatise is over 2,000 pages and is co-written by over 50 Massachusetts lawyers.  Attorney Barreira’s own chapters are “Trusts in the MassHealth Context” and “Taxation of Trusts.”
  • Legal Writer and Blogger Attorney Barreira’s first major article, “An Irrevocable Grantor Trust Can Assure Eligibility for Medicaid,” published in the prestigious Estate Planning journal in 1989, was the first article published nationally about how to establish an irrevocable trust that worked for both Medicaid and capital gains tax purposes. Now that blogging makes information more easily accessible, he focuses on placing his thoughts about estate planning and elder law issues directly on the internet, and in recent years, his blogs, which include ElderLaw.info, IrrevocableTrust.info, MassHealth.info and MassHealthAppeals.com, have received well over 650,000 page views.
  • Masters of Laws in Taxation – In addition to a law degree, Attorney Barreira has an advanced law degree, an LL.M. in Taxation, awarded in 1990, and incorporates all relevant tax issues into his legal advice.
  • Expert Witness – Attorney Barreira is called upon by other lawyers to serve as an expert witness in his fields of specialization. He is even willing to testify against lawyers if he feels they have not done the right thing.

An early leader in the development of elder law as a legal specialty, Brian served during 1990-1996 as the first Chair of the Elder Law Committee of the American Bar Association’s General Practice Section. He has also served as President of the Massachusetts Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Attorneys, and as Chair of the Committee on Long-Term Health Care Issues of the American Bar Association’s Real Property, Probate & Trust Law Section.  After certification of elder law attorneys became available through the National Elder Law Foundation, Brian served on its Examination and Grading Committees.

Among Brian’s diverse experiences, he has served as a background source on elder financial abuse reports for the Boston Globe Spotlight Team and 60 Minutes; as an undercover informant for the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office in shutting down an organization that was fraudulently selling trusts to senior citizens; and as an expert witness in a recent case opposing the fees of two lawyers who attempted to charge over $500,000 for an 83-day temporary guardianship; and as lead counsel in Daley v. Secretary of Executive Office of Health and Human Services, 477 Mass. 188 (2017), which protected the rights of citizens to create irrevocable trusts for their homes.

Prior to opening his own law office in 1996, Brian worked for 11+ years settling complex estates at State Street Bank and Trust Company in Boston, Massachusetts and practicing estate planning, probate and elder law for law firms in Boston and Plymouth, Massachusetts.

Please call the office of Brian E. Barreira at 508-747-8282 to schedule a personal appointment and, if travel is a problem for you, he can conduct a Zoom meeting with you.