Courts open Friday during state shutdown day

Posted May 26, 2010, at 9:33 p.m.

Federal and state offices as well as courts in Maine will be closed Monday, May 31, in observance of Memorial Day.

While most state offices will be closed Friday for a shutdown day, the courts will remain open.

Most criminal matters or cases that require the presence of a state employee will not be scheduled.

According to information on the Maine judiciary’s website, the courts will handle the following matters on shutdown days:

• Emergency petitions presented by a state agency such as a request for a preliminary protection order or an emergency involuntary admission request.

• Matters in which urgent constitutional rights are affected, including in-custody arraignments and juvenile detention hearings.

• Any case type that does not involve a district attorney, an assistant attorney general or other state workers subject to the state shutdown.

• Civil matters will be scheduled and clerks will be available to provide information and collect fines.

In addition, the Maine court system will hold an administrative week from June 1 to 4. All clerks’ offices in District and Superior courts in the state will be closed in the mornings and open to the public from noon to 4 p.m.

The temporary hours will allow court personnel to catch up on paperwork without interruption, according to the Administrative Office of the Courts in Portland.

Judges will have an opportunity to catch up on research and writing. Only emergency matters will be heard in courtrooms.

Similar administrative weeks have been held every three to six months for the past several years. The last one was held the week of March 29.

Regular hours will resume Monday, June 7.

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