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When must you be released from Jail for Violating a Court Order- Specificity of Commitment Order

by | Feb 11, 2024 | Firm News


For a court to order the release of someone confined for violating an order, the trial court’s order of commitment must be void, either because it was beyond the power of the court or because it deprived the relator of his liberty without due process of law. See Ex parte Gordon, 584 S.W.2d 686 (Tex.1979).

To meet legal standards, there must be a written order to jail someone for civil contempt of court, according to Ex parte Puckitt, 322 S.W.2d 597 (1959). Even if there’s a written contempt order, a separate written jail order must be given to the officer, as established in cases like Ex parte Hardin, 344 S.W.2d 152 (1961) and others. This jail order doesn’t have a specific required format. It can be a certified copy of the court’s judgment or a separate order signed by the judge or court clerk.

The court can temporarily hold a person in jail while waiting for the official jail order to be signed, as explained in Ex parte Barnett, 600 S.W.2d 252 (Tex. 1980).

Legally, a written jail order is a must before someone can be imprisoned for contempt, detailed in Ex parte Hardin and others. The format of this order isn’t strictly defined by law, as discussed in Ex parte Arapis, 306 S.W.2d 884 (1957). It might be the court’s judgment itself or a separate document signed by the judge or court clerk.

If you or someone you know is currently facing confinement for contempt of court in any county across Texas, don’t face this challenging situation alone. At Beveridge Law Firm, founded and owned by Ben Beveridge, we specialize in handling cases of contempt of court and ensuring that your rights are protected throughout the legal process. Our experienced team is dedicated to providing expert guidance and representation to help you navigate through this difficult time. No matter where you are in Texas, we’re here to support you. Our office is located at 410 South 2nd St, Alvin, Texas 77511. Reach out to us today at 281-407-0961 or submit your information at Let us help you find the best path forward.t