A court order barring a woman from contacting another woman by “electronic or any other means” prohibited the subject from tagging the protected woman in a Facebook post, a New York judge has ruled.

Denying a motion to dismiss a criminal contempt case against Maria Gonzalez, acting Westchester County Supreme Court Justice Susan Capeci said the conduct, if proven, would violate the protective order, the New York Law Journal (sub. req.) reports.

A lawyer for Gonzalez argued that the court order didn’t specifically ban making contact via Facebook.

The ABA Journal

It occurs fairly often in pending divorce situations that “no contact” orders are issued.  It is also common for there to be “no contact” orders in criminal domestic violence cases.  With the many ways that people have contact with one another these days other than face to face contact, such as email and texts that are delivered straight to people’s smartphones, it is easier than ever to violate these orders.  That was illustrated recently in a case reported out of Westchester, New York where a judge has held that “tagging” a person who is the subject of a “no contact” order in a photograph in a Facebook post can violate a “no contact” order.  This was noted in an article posted in an ABA Journal Tech Monthly article recently.  There the judge refused to dismiss a criminal contempt complaint against a defendant due to the tagging of a person in a photograph.
 
These “no contact” orders are usually very broad and cover not only direct contact but indirect contact as well.  If you have a divorce pending or a visitation schedule to work out these orders can be surprisingly easy to violate and can subject you to criminal or civil contempt penalties.   

Jim Jeffries | Mobile & Baldwin County Attorney

Jim currently is a member of the Alabama Supreme Court's Advisory Committee on Child Support Guidelines and Enforcement as well as a statewide committee that has been tasked with reviewing and making recommendations for possible revisions to Alabama's version of the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA). Jim was also recently appointed by the President of the Alabama State Bar Association to a serve on a committee whose purpose is to review and comment on Alabama legislation regarding joint custody for a proposal to the Alabama Legislature for possible changes in this legislation.

Jim has attained a Peer Review Ranking of AV from Martindale-Hubbell® - The highest an attorney can be ranked by his peers.

He continues to lecture to attorneys across the state regarding family law issues.

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Jeffries Family Law, LLC

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