571-8.5 Powers. (a) The district family judges may:

(1) Administer oaths;

(2) Subpoena, summon, and compel the attendance of parties and witnesses from any part of the State, and compel the production of books, papers, documents including school, medical, and financial records, or tangible things;

(3) Make and issue all orders and writs necessary or appropriate in aid of their original jurisdiction;

(4) Perpetuate testimony under the rules and orders of the family court, and issue commissions for the perpetuation of testimony to be used on controversies pending before them;

(5) Grant continuances in proceedings before them;

(6) Enforce decrees and judgments and punish contempts according to law;

(7) In a criminal case, alter, set aside, or suspend a sentence by way of mitigation or otherwise upon motion or plea of a defendant made within thirty days after imposition of a sentence;

(8) Appoint guardians ad litem for minors or persons who are incompetent or attorneys to represent parties in accordance with law;

(9) Admit to bail persons rightfully confined in all bailable cases, or dispense with bail as provided by the State Constitution;

(10) Make and award judgments, decrees, orders, and mandates, issue executions and other processes, and do other acts and take other steps as may be necessary to carry into full effect the powers that are or shall be given to them by law or for the promotion of justice in matters pending before them; and

(11) Make and issue orders for pre-trial detention of persons aged eighteen years or older to an adult correctional facility, when the person is alleged to have committed an act or acts during the person's minority that would constitute a violation of section 571-11(1).

(b) Every witness duly subpoenaed as provided in this section shall be allowed the same attendance and mileage fees allowed witnesses subpoenaed before the circuit courts. [L 1973, c 219, pt of 1; am L 1980, c 115, 1; am L 1998, c 190, 2]


Case Notes


Family court had subject matter jurisdiction to issue temporary restraining order under 560:1-302(b), 560:5-106(2) and (3), and this section, where resolution of ward's capacity was required to be resolved, and an apparent threat of ward's removal from the court's jurisdiction was alleged. 113 H. 211, 151 P.3d 692 (2007).

Family court abused its discretion when it denied wife's multiple requests for an extension of pretrial deadlines and sanctioned wife for missing the deadlines by excluding evidence where record revealed that although trial was delayed a month to accommodate the personal schedule of the assigned trial judge and husband agreed to extend the pretrial deadlines for both parties, the family court refused to grant wife any extensions and did not explain why it denied wife's various motions for an extension of pretrial deadlines. 121 H. 401 (App.), 220 P.3d 264 (2009).



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