When can you refuse to testify in court and not get into trouble?

My husband was arrested and charged with a failure to register as a dangerous person before we got married. We were living with my mother and she lied about him living there to protect her assistance and later came clean to an investigator. The county served me with papers to testify at his trial but the trial has been post-poned three times and I have not received a letter or been served with papers to testify on this new date. Does this mean that if they ask me to testify since I have not been served I have the right to say no, without being in contempt of court?

Asked on March 5, 2013 under Criminal Law, Minnesota


Matthew Majeski / Majeski Law, LLC

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

You have a right to receive notice of a court proceeding you are expected to participate in.  Generally "asking you to testify" will be done concurrently with this notice.  However, if you have even informal notice that you're expected to appear, I would never advise anyone to intentionally miss a court appearance.

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