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What Happens if I’m in Criminal Contempt of Court in CA?

There is nothing worse than being accused of a crime. That said, many people fail to understand that even after a criminal charge is brought against them, they’re still at risk of facing further charges if they are held in criminal contempt of court. Please continue reading and reach out to our seasoned Red Bluff criminal lawyer to learn more about what this means and how our firm can help. Here are some of the questions you may have:

What does it mean to be in criminal contempt of court in California?

The first thing you should understand is that there are two types of “contempt”: criminal and civil contempt. Because of this, the penalties you may face for both will vary. If you have failed to comply with a court order, such as by failing to abide by a child support agreement, you’ll likely be held in civil contempt of court. If you fail to make child support payments, courts may hold a person in civil contempt of court, meaning they’ll garnish the person’s wages or otherwise enforce the order and make them pay child support. That said, being held in criminal contempt of court is a punitive matter, and will become a separate charge from the initial criminal charge you’re facing.

What are some of the potential penalties I may face if I’m in criminal contempt of court?

For a person to be convicted of criminal contempt of court charges, the jury must prove the act occurred beyond a reasonable doubt. Unfortunately, those found guilty of criminal contempt will likely face a period of incarceration, which can sometimes begin even before the charge is adjudicated and the sentence is decided. For this reason, if you’re found to be in criminal contempt of court, it’s paramount that you retain competent legal representation who can protect you from those charges at all costs. Our legal team has decades of experience representing clients through each phase of the criminal law process, and we’re prepared and honored to put that experience to work for you. If you’ve been held in criminal contempt of court or are facing criminal charges of any kind, reach out to a competent Redding criminal lawyer from Cohen Criminal Law today. We’re on your side.


Attorney Cohen has fought on behalf of those charged with crimes and traffic violations for over 30 years, and he is ready to fight for you, too. Contact Cohen Criminal Law today to schedule your free initial consultation with our firm.