Contempt Charges

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Contempt Charges

During a custody dispute, the judge says that either parent is not allowed to
talk bad about the other one. He then states that it extends to family
members as well. There was a contempt charge against me for something
that my friends and family allegedly did without my knowledge. Can I be held
in contempt for their actions?

Asked on February 21, 2017 under Family Law, Utah


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Legally, you are not liable for another person's actions, unless you assisted them in some way, directed them to do that, etc. As a practical matter, it may be that the court believes that you did cause this to happen; you may need testimony from a family member, etc. stating that they did this on their own, and that you were in fact not involved.
There is one exception: you can be held liable for the actions of a minor child under your legal control, as the parent or legal guardian.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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