Right to counsel

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Legislation, Civil Commitment - Subject of Petition

There is a right to counsel in civil commitment proceedings. Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 34-B, § 3864(5)(D) (2012). The Supreme Judicial Court of Maine has said that appointment of counsel under § 3864(5)(D) is mandatory, in the sense that the person subjected to commitment does not have the option of proceeding pro se. In re Penelope W., 19 A.3d 813 (Me. 2011).


Additionally, under Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 34-B, § 5478(2), an indigent person subjected to a continuation of treatment in a facility shall be appointed counsel if they are not already represented. 


Appointment of Counsel: categorical Qualified: no