The specifics of what constitutes 'Contempt Of Court' vary slightly from State to State, but generally
speaking, in order to find that a civil contempt has occurred, it must be determined that:
- a lawful order of the court was in effect;
- the order clearly expressed an unequivocal mandate;
- the party against whom the contempt is sought had knowledge of the order (although the order need not be served upon the party);
- there is proof as to a "reasonable certainty" that the order was disobeyed; and
- the rights of a party to the litigation were prejudiced, i.e. that the accused "defeated, impaired, impeded, or prejudiced" the petitioner's rights or remedies.