Contempt of Court

Bankruptcy, Criminal, Business > Contempt of Court

Contempt of court refers to the conduct of an individual that explicitly and in a very unambiguous manner disrespects, defies or insults the court’s authority or dignity.

In a family law case, court orders that define parenting arrangements as a part of a divorce settlement are serious documents that must be complied with totally in word and spirit. These orders are given after careful consideration of the circumstances and aimed at maintaining stability for all the concerned parties, especially the children after parents have split. That’s why strict and comprehensive adherence to these court orders is crucial.

The court takes a serious view if one or both the parents violate an order as it can create an atmosphere of uncertainty throw a carefully planned schedule into chaos and disarray.

To prevent such a situation, contempt proceedings can be initiated to force the erring party to follow the court order. Contempt cases are filed when it is apparent that there is a calculated and intentional violation of a family court order.

Violation of a family court order can have a huge impact on the lives of those involved. If an order from the family court is ignored or not complied with appropriately, the person responsible for the same can be charged for contempt of court. A few examples:

  • Violating the mutually agreed and accepted parenting time agreement
  • Failure to comply with the visitation time agreement by refusing to hand over the child within the agreed timeline
  • Deliberately stalling the visit of the child to the other parent in accordance with the parenting plan
  • Failure to pay child support or spousal support

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Judges are empowered with the discretion to decide whom to hold in contempt and the type of contempt charges that can be pressed against the person or persons. Attorneys, witnesses, officers, the staff of the court and any other person or persons associated with a case can be held guilty of contempt of court.

The person committing contempt by the failure to obey a court order and comply with the ruling of the family law court faces severe contempt sanctions. The judges can invoke various laws created for the purpose to coerce people into complying with a court order that has been deliberately violated.

In some cases, contempt charges operate independently of the underlying family law case and may continue even after the underlying case has been legally resolved.

Want Quality And Expert Legal Assistance For Contempt of Court Case?

You can minimize the risk of a contempt of court charge initiated by a family law court by engaging the services of a family law attorney with experience in such cases. The attorney can represent you and speak on your behalf.

At The Law Office of Rowena N. Nelson, we offer sound and quality advice on matters related to compliance with court orders. Our expert family law attorneys in Maryland, DC and Northern Virginia can also defend you when a contempt charge is leveled at you. We can help you get a favorable resolution and that much-needed peace of mind.

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