Brian W. Riley


Phone: 617.556.0007
Practice Areas: General Municipal, Licensing, Litigation

Attorney Riley, a Shareholder of the firm and Chair of the General Municipal Practice Group, has 30 years of experience in municipal law with a focus on general municipal law issues, licensing and litigation.  Attorney Riley’s practice involves a broad range of municipal law subjects, including town meetings, the Conflict of Interest Law, Open Meeting Law and Public Records Law, charters and bylaws, elections, municipal finance, bankruptcy and all areas of licensing. He has successfully represented clients before courts at all levels and at administrative agencies throughout the Commonwealth.  He serves as the primary contact attorney or back-up attorney to numerous communities and advises clients at open meetings and executive sessions, public hearings, Town Meetings, City and Town Council Meetings, and works closely on a regular basis with Town Managers, Town Administrators and Mayors. 

Representative Matters

  • Provides town counsel services for numerous communities in Massachusetts.
  • Assists with town meeting matters, including drafting warrant articles and motions, reviewing annual and special town meeting warrants, meeting with moderators and other key town officials and representing towns at town meeting.
  • Tedeschi Food Shops, Inc. v. Abington Board of Selectmen, PLCV2011-01383 (2013).       Successfully defended a Board of Selectmen’s denial of an underground storage tank license for a proposed service station, based on public health and safety concerns.
  • Town of Holden v. Wachusett Regional School District Committee, et al., 445 Mass. 656 (2005). Defended a small town from an amendment to a regional school agreement that would have overcharged the town for its share of the budget, in violation of the Education Reform Act.
  • Sullivan v. State Police and Chief of Police of Pembroke, et al., 57 Mass. App. Ct. 10 (2003). Defended Chief’s interpretation of state law prohibiting the sale of firearms from a residential structure, notwithstanding the structure’s separate entrance for business area.
  • Has represented numerous municipal clients before District and Superior Courts as well as state agencies on a variety of licensing issues, including alcoholic beverages, firearms, taxi and limousine regulations, motor vehicle sales and entertainment licensing. Extensive practice before the Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission.

Memberships & Affiliations

  • Massachusetts Bar Association

Bar & Court Admissions

  • Massachusetts Bar
  • U.S. District Court (Mass.)
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit


Suffolk University Law School
Juris Doctor, 1989
Technical Editor (1988-1989), Staff Member (1987-1988), Suffolk University Law Review

University of Pennsylvania
Bachelor of Arts, 1981

Speaking Engagements

  • Attorney Riley is well-recognized in the legal community, frequently speaking on municipal law issues to clients as well as a variety of organizations, including several Massachusetts Municipal Association groups and the Massachusetts City and Town Clerks’ Association. Representative topics include the conflict of interest, open meeting and public records laws, parliamentary procedure and liquor licensing.