Maine Revised Statutes

§3136. Contempt

1. Motion for contempt.  Whenever a judgment debtor or any other person fails to comply with any court order entered pursuant to this chapter, except an order against a judgment debtor issued for failure to comply with a disclosure subpoena, the judgment creditor may file a motion with the court to hold that person in contempt. The motion shall be under oath and set forth the facts that give rise to the motion or shall be accompanied with a supporting affidavit setting forth the facts.
[ 1987, c. 184, §19 (NEW) .]
2. Contempt subpoena.  For the purpose of the contempt hearing, the judgment creditor shall have the right to subpoena the person sought to be held in contempt. Contempt subpoenas shall be issued in blank by the clerks of the District Court. The contempt subpoena shall set forth the title of the action, the date and place where the person sought to be held in contempt is ordered to appear for the contempt hearing, an order to produce any documents requested by the judgment creditor, a warning that failure to obey the contempt subpoena may result in the arrest of that person and that a finding of contempt by the court may result in the person being fined or imprisoned, or both, until the person complies with the court order.
[ 1987, c. 184, §19 (NEW) .]
3. Service of contempt subpoena and motion.  The subpoena shall be served with a copy of the motion for contempt and supporting affidavit, if any, upon the person sought to be held in contempt at least 10 days prior to the hearing by an officer qualified to serve civil process in the same manner as provided in section 3123.
[ 1987, c. 184, §19 (NEW) .]
4. Failure to appear.  If the person sought to be held in contempt fails to appear after being duly served with a contempt subpoena and the judgment creditor appears at the time and place named in the subpoena, upon the request of the judgment creditor, the judge shall issue a civil order of arrest directing the sheriff to arrest the person and bring the person to the court on any day the court is in session. In the case of a nonindividual, the civil order of arrest must be issued for the arrest of any officer, director or managing agent who was served with the contempt subpoena.
[ 1997, c. 17, §3 (AMD) .]
5. Orders.  Upon a finding at the contempt hearing that a court order has been disobeyed by the person and that the person has the present ability to comply with the order, the person must be adjudged in civil contempt. The court has the power to impose such reasonable fine or imprisonment as the circumstances require, provided that the person is given an opportunity to purge that person of the contempt. Whenever the person personally purges that person of the contempt, the court shall release the person from imprisonment and may remit any fine or a portion of the fine. In addition, the court may enter orders pursuant to sections 3126-A, 3127-A, 3127-B, 3130, 3131 and 3132 to assure the person's compliance with the court order and to aid the judgment creditor in the enforcement of the order.
[ 1999, c. 587, §8 (AMD) .]

Nothing contained in this section may limit in any way the court's power to enter a finding of criminal contempt in appropriate circumstances. [1987, c. 184, §19 (RPR).]

1971, c. 408, §1 (NEW). 1973, c. 477, §8 (AMD). 1973, c. 788, §59 (AMD). 1987, c. 184, §19 (RPR). 1997, c. 17, §3 (AMD). 1999, c. 587, §8 (AMD).