February 23, 2015 | 12pm PT/1pm MT/2pm CT/3pm ET | 75 minutes | Free

American courtrooms face an ever-increasing level of uncivil and disruptive behavior on the part of litigants, attorneys, and members of the public. How should judges respond to trial disruptions? Judges relying on the inherent power of the courts through the use of civil and criminal contempt face ethical pitfalls, costly court delays, and possible sanctions when contempt powers are improperly exercised.

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Judge Phyllis Kotey discusses the appropriate use of contempt powers in this 75-minute webcast.

During this webcast, you will learn to:

  • Identify and distinguish between criminal and civil contempt by lawyers, litigants or witnesses.
  • Apply appropriate sanctions to contemptuous acts by lawyers, litigants or witnesses.
  • Utilize preventive measures and sanctions for dealing with trial and court disruption.


Presented by Hon. Phyllis D. Williams Kotey (senior status), professor and criminal justice clinic director of Florida International University, College of Law.

This webcast is being offered free of charge through generous sponsorship by the State Justice Institute.

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