February 28, 2020
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Maine court system seeks panel to review guardian complaints

John Clarke Russ | BDN
John Clarke Russ | BDN
Mary Ann Lynch

AUGUSTA, Maine — The Maine court system is looking for members of the public interested in sitting on a panel being set up to review complaints made against guardians ad litem.

Guardians are appointed by the court to offer advice about what may be in the best interests of a child in legal proceedings, such as child protective and parental responsibility cases.

Maine Judicial Branch spokeswoman Mary Ann Lynch said that in the aftermath of legislation requesting the courts increase oversight of guardians ad litem, the Maine Supreme Judicial Court has issued new rules, effective Sept. 1. Lynch said among the complaints the board may look into are fees paid to guardians. In addition, “people might complain that they think the guardian is biased or committed some other violation of the guardian ad litem rules,” Lynch said.

The courts are looking for four public members who would join eight guardians ad litem on the review panel.

“I think that what we would want from the public members would be people who are thoughtful and can listen to the facts of the case and then make a fair and impartial decision,” Lynch said.

People interested in serving as a public member must file a letter of interest with the Supreme Judicial Court by Aug. 21.


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