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      RS 13:4611     

  

CHAPTER 30. CONTEMPT

NOTE: Section heading effective until Jan. 1, 2019. See Acts 2017, No. 264, §3.

§4611. Punishment for contempt of court

NOTE: Section heading as amended by Acts 2017, No. 264, §3, effective Jan. 1, 2019.

§4611. Punishment for contempt of court; defenses

            Except as otherwise provided for by law:

            (1) The supreme court, the courts of appeal, the district courts, family courts, juvenile courts and the city courts may punish a person adjudged guilty of a contempt of court therein, as follows:

            (a) For a direct contempt of court committed by an attorney at law, by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars, or by imprisonment for not more than twenty-four hours, or both; and, for any subsequent contempt of the same court by the same offender, by a fine of not more than two hundred dollars, or by imprisonment for not more than ten days, or both;

            (b) For disobeying or resisting a lawful restraining order, or preliminary or permanent injunction, by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars, or by imprisonment for not more than six months, or both.

            (c) For a deliberate refusal to perform an act which is yet within the power of the offender to perform, by imprisonment until he performs the act; and

            (d)(i) For any other contempt of court, including disobeying an order for the payment of child support or spousal support or an order for the right of custody or visitation, by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars, or imprisonment for not more than three months, or both.

            (ii) In addition to or in lieu of the penalties provided by this Paragraph, the court may order that the person perform litter abatement work or community service in a court-approved program for each day he was to be imprisoned, provided that the total days of jail, litter abatement work, and community service do not exceed the maximum sentence provided by this Paragraph.

NOTE: Item (1)(d)(iii) as enacted by Acts 2017, No. 264, §3, effective Jan. 1, 2019.

            (iii) It is a defense as provided by R.S. 9:311.1 to a charge of contempt of court for failure to comply with a court order of child support if an obligor can prove that he was incarcerated during the period of noncompliance. This defense applies only to the time period of actual incarceration.

            (e) In addition to or in lieu of the above penalties, when a parent has violated a visitation order, the court may order any or all of the following:

            (i) Require one or both parents to allow additional visitation days to replace those denied the noncustodial parent.

            (ii) Require one or both parents to attend a parent education course.

            (iii) Require one or both parents to attend counseling or mediation.

            (iv) Require the parent violating the order to pay all court costs and reasonable attorney fees of the other party.

            (f) A pattern of willful and intentional violation of this Section, without good cause, may constitute a material change in circumstances warranting a modification of an existing custody or visitation order.

            (g) The court may award attorney fees to the prevailing party in a contempt of court proceeding provided for in this Section.

            (2) Justices of the peace may punish a person adjudged guilty of a direct contempt of court by a fine of not more than fifty dollars, or imprisonment in the parish jail for not more than twenty-four hours, or both.

            (3) The court or justice of the peace, when applicable, may suspend the imposition or the execution of the whole or any part of the sentence imposed and place the defendant on unsupervised probation or probation supervised by a probation office, agency, or officer designated by the court or justice of the peace, other than the division of probation and parole of the Department of Public Safety and Corrections. When the court or justice of the peace places a defendant on probation, the court or the justice of the peace may impose any specific conditions reasonably related to the defendant's rehabilitation, including but not limited to the conditions of probation as set forth in Code of Criminal Procedure Article 895. A term of probation shall not exceed the length of time a defendant may be imprisoned for the contempt, except in the case of contempt for disobeying an order for the payment of child support or spousal support or an order for the right of custody or visitation, when the term of probation may extend for a period of up to two years.

            Added by Acts 1960, No. 32, §6, eff. Jan. 1, 1961. Amended by Acts 1964, No. 241, §1; Acts 1972, No. 664, §1; Acts 1985, No. 43, §1; Acts 1991, No. 508, §2; Acts 1993, No. 429, §1; Acts 1995, No. 517, §1; Acts 1999, No. 57, §1; Acts 2001, No. 425, §2, eff. June 15, 2001; Acts 2004, No. 520, §1; Acts 2006, No. 653, §1; Acts 2014, No. 330, §1; Acts 2016, No. 132, §2; Acts 2017, No. 264, §3, eff. Jan. 1, 2019.



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