Uncivil Litigation: What Happens When Unruly Behavior Upsets A Courtoom

Despite the number of courtroom daytime dramas on TV, people should not behave in immature and violent ways in a real court. Most people do not behave that way, but if they were to start screaming, shouting or attempting physical violence, there are measures which a judge can take for the safety of all. When civil litigation becomes uncivil, you can guarantee the judge will enact one of the following civil actions.

Physical Restraint Via the Bailiffs

This is an extreme measure for the most extreme cases. If you or someone else in the courtroom suddenly leaps toward another in a rage, the judge will request that the bailiffs restrain you or the offending party. Loaded weapons are not allowed in the courtroom, but fists can still do damage and bailiffs can still use their strength and force you to sit.

Contempt of Court Punishments

Verbal outbursts, obscenities and other loud interruptions in a courtroom can result in a contempt of court punishment. If you are prone to losing your temper, and your lawyer cannot help you calm down and remember where you are, then the judge can fine you or sentence you to the local jail for any amount of time he or she deems fit.

If you think the judge's ruling on your civil case is unfair or you disagree with anything that he or she says, you should take it up with your lawyer after you leave the courtroom where it is safer to lose your temper. You will not incur a contempt of court punishment by being emotional outside of court.

Removed from Court Entirely

In rare cases, some people cannot control themselves at all in a courtroom. When neither physical restraint or contempt of court punishments stop you from acting out, the next step is to remove you from court entirely.

If you were already in jail for contempt of court, the judge will request that the bailiffs return you to your cell.

If you were not in jail but have several outbursts in a single session, you may be taken to jail and held there or asked to leave the building and grounds entirely.

Whatever happens in your litigation case from there you will have to get the information from your lawyer.

Preventing Uncivil Behavior in Civil Court

If you know you cannot behave respectfully and appropriately in court, you may refrain from appearing physically, allowing your lawyer to represent you and your case. You may also "appear" by telephone if you want to be present but do not trust yourself to be actually be in court. If you have enough time between now and your court date, you could attend anger management classes to help you deal with your temper and tamper it once you are in court.

If you have questions, contact a professional or visit a website to read more and get help.