Public Laws

124th Legislature

First Regular Session



Chapter 202

H.P. 563 - L.D. 827

An Act To Exempt Protection from Abuse Orders from the Notification and 30-day Waiting Period Requirements under the Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act

Emergency preamble. Whereas,  acts and resolves of the Legislature do not become effective until 90 days after adjournment unless enacted as emergencies; and

Whereas,  orders or judgments from other states must be filed in Maine to be upheld by law enforcement and Maine courts; and

Whereas,  current Maine law requires the person filing a judgment from another state to pay the court fees, including registering, docketing, transcription and other enforcement fees; and

Whereas,  the federal Violence Against Women Act prohibits the assessment of fees for such orders; and

Whereas,  Maine law needs to be amended as soon as possible to comply with the federal law and to avoid jeopardizing certain federal funds that the State currently receives; and

Whereas,  in the judgment of the Legislature, these facts create an emergency within the meaning of the Constitution of Maine and require the following legislation as immediately necessary for the preservation of the public peace, health and safety; now, therefore,

Be it enacted by the People of the State of Maine as follows:

Sec. 1. 14 MRSA §8004, sub-§4  is enacted to read:

4 Foreign protection orders.   Subsections 2 and 3 do not apply if the foreign judgment is an order that qualifies as a protection order as defined by 18 United States Code, Section 2266 or is the equivalent of a protection from abuse order under Title 19-A, Part 4 or a protection from harassment order under Title 5, chapter 337-A.

Sec. 2. 14 MRSA §8006,  as enacted by PL 1975, c. 335, is repealed and the following enacted in its place:

§ 8006.   Fees

1 Filing a foreign judgment.   Except as provided in subsection 2, a person filing a foreign judgment shall pay to the clerk of courts the fee then provided for the entry of an action. Fees for docketing, transcription or other enforcement proceedings are as provided for judgments of the District Court or Superior Court.
2 Exception.   A fee may not be charged for the registration, docketing, transcription or other enforcement proceedings of a foreign judgment or order that qualifies as a protection order as defined by 18 United States Code, Section 2266 or is the equivalent of a protection from abuse order under Title 19-A, Part 4 or a protection from harassment order under Title 5, chapter 337-A.

Sec. 3. 19-A MRSA §1753, sub-§5,  as enacted by PL 1999, c. 486, §3 and affected by §6, is amended to read:

5. Confidentiality.   If Notwithstanding any other provision of law, if a party alleges in an affidavit or a pleading under oath that the health, safety or liberty of a party or child would be jeopardized by disclosure of identifying information, the information must be sealed and may not be disclosed to the other party or the public unless the court orders the disclosure to be made after a hearing in which the court takes into consideration the health, safety or liberty of the party or child and determines that the disclosure is in the interest of justice.

Emergency clause. In view of the emergency cited in the preamble, this legislation takes effect when approved.

Effective May 26, 2009.

Office of the Revisor of Statutes
State House, Room 108
Augusta, ME 04333