What Happens If You Do Not Follow Court Order?

While following the court order is mandatory, there can be exceptions when you can get relief

There are various options that you can use following a court order. For example, you can approach a higher court to seek justice. Even with a Supreme Court order, you can file a review petition. A mercy petition can also be filed with the Governor or the President of India.

While these options are available, sometimes people may just refuse to accept the court order. To understand what happens if you do not follow a court order, here are some important points to consider.

Provisions under contempt of court

To ensure justice, the constitution provides judges the power to use the provisions given under the Contempt of Courts Act 1971. This power can be exercised by the High Courts and the Supreme Court of India. It is an important tool to enforce the court’s decision on the people and entities involved in the case. When someone does not follow the court’s order, there are two types of contempt of court actions that can be initiated.

Civil contempt – Under a Civil contempt procedure, action can be taken when someone intentionally does not follow a court’s judgement. It is also applicable in case of a direction, decree or other orders passed by the court. An intentional breach of any undertaking given to the court will also be covered under a civil contempt procedure.

Criminal contempt – This is applied when there is an attempt to scandalize or lower the authority of any court. Interfering in the judicial proceedings or obstructing the administration of justice can also be treated as criminal contempt. Various other actions such as giving false statements, attacking witnesses, threatening judges and litigants. etc. can be treated as criminal contempt. Presenting the court and judges in a bad light and verbal abuse and accusations also can be treated as criminal contempt.

What is punishment for not obeying court’s order?

In both the civil and criminal contempt cases, the punishment is the same. Maximum jail term that can be ordered is six months. Courts also have the power to order a fine of up to Rs 2,000. However, a person involved in contempt of court can apologize to the court to avoid the prison term and the fine. The court will determine if the apology is genuine and sufficient.

What to do if you are not satisfied with a court order?

It is natural to experience anger and pain when a court’s judgement is against you. However, not following the court order will make things only worse. Instead, you need to use legal options that may be available. A lawyer can inform you about all the choices you have. They will suggest the best ways to proceed further.

In some cases, you can approach the court directly to seek relief. Based on your specific condition or circumstances, the court may make some modifications in the order. Make sure to support your case with verifiable evidence such as your health records, financial statements and other relevant information. These can help you get some relief from the court.

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