Submitted On Briefs: October 24, 2019
P. Belisle, Esq., Bangor, for appellant Steven L.
Stockdell, Esq., Brewer, for appellee Acadia Hospital
SAUFLEY, C.J., and ALEXANDER, MEAD, GORMAN, JABAR, HJELM, and
HUMPHREY, J. 
S. appeals from an order of the Superior Court (Penobscot
County, A. Murray, J.) affirming an order of the
District Court (Bangor, Campbell, J.) admitting him
to a progressive treatment program (PTP). We dismiss the
appeal as moot.
On August 28, 2018, Acadia Hospital Corporation applied for
an order admitting S. to a PTP. See 34-B M.R.S.
§ 3873-A (2018). The court scheduled a hearing on the
application and appointed a psychologist to examine S. The
psychologist examined him by telephone on August 29, 2018,
and filed his report with the court on August 31, 2018. The
report was admitted without objection.
The District Court held a hearing on the application on
August 31, 2018, during which it heard testimony from the
psychologist; a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner,
who treated and provided care for S.; and S. himself. At the
conclusion of the hearing, the court found, by clear and
convincing evidence, that all of the elements required for an
order of admission to the PTP were met. See 34-B
M.R.S. § 3873-A(1). The court entered an order admitting
S. to the PTP and committing him to the care and supervision
of Acadia for one year.
S. timely appealed to the Superior Court pursuant to Rule 76D
of the Maine Rules of Civil Procedure. He made no effort to
expedite the appeal in the Superior Court. That court held a
hearing on May 16, 2019, and entered an order affirming the
District Court's order on May 20, 2019. S. filed a timely
notice of appeal on June 7, 2019. M.R. Civ. P. 2B(c)(1).
Although neither party has raised the issue of mootness, we
do so sua sponte. See In re Steven L., 2017 ME 5,
¶ 7, 153 A.3d 764 [Steven L. II). In general,
we will not "hear an appeal when the issues are moot,
that is, when they have lost their controversial vitality,
and [a] decision would not provide an appellant any real or
effective relief." Id. ¶ 8.
More than one year has passed since the District Court
entered its order on August 31, 2018. By statute, and by the
terms of the court's order, the PTP could not exceed
twelve months, and therefore the order has expired. See
id. ¶ 7; 34-B M.R.S. § 3873-A(6). Unless an
exception to the mootness doctrine applies, the appeal must
There are three exceptions to the mootness doctrine: (1) the
collateral consequences exception, which allows for review of
a controversy where sufficient collateral consequences result
from the appealed matter so as to justify relief; (2) the
public interest exception, which permits questions of great
public interest to be addressed to guide the bar and the
public; and (3) an exception that allows the review of
matters that are repeatedly presented to trial courts but