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Contempt of Court Act 1981, Section 14 is up to date with all changes known to be in force on or before 28 February 2017. There are changes that may be brought into force at a future date. Changes that have been made appear in the content and are referenced with annotations.
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(1)In any case where a court has power to commit a person to prison for contempt of court and (apart from this provision) no limitation applies to the period of committal, the committal shall (without prejudice to the power of the court to order his earlier discharge) be for a fixed term, and that term shall not on any occasion exceed two years in the case of committal by a superior court, or one month in the case of committal by an inferior court.
(2)In any case where an inferior court has power to fine a person for contempt of court and (apart from this provision) no limit applies to the amount of the fine, the fine shall not on any occasion exceed [F1£2,500].
[F2(2A)A fine imposed under subsection (2) above shall be deemed, for the purposes of any enactment, to be a sum adjudged to be paid by a conviction.]
[F3(2A)In the exercise of jurisdiction to commit for contempt of court or any kindred offence the court shall not deal with the offender by making an order under [F4section 60 of the Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000] (an attendance centre order) if it appears to the court, after considering any available evidence, that he is under 17 years of age.]
(3)F5. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
(4)Each of the superior courts shall have the like power to make a hospital order or guardianship order under [F6section 37 of the M1Mental Health Act 1983] [F7or an interim hospital order under] [F6section 38 of that Act] in the case of a person suffering from [F8mental disorder within the meaning of that Act] who could otherwise be committed to prison for contempt of court as the Crown Court has under that section in the case of a person convicted of an offence.
[F9(4A)Each of the superior courts shall have the like power to make an order under [F10section 35 of the said Act of 1983] (remand for report on accused’s mental condition) where there is reason to suspect that a person who could be committed to prison for contempt of court is suffering from [F8mental disorder within the meaning of that Act] as the Crown Court has under that section in the case of an accused person within the meaning of that section.]
[F13(4B)The preceding provisions of this section do not apply to the family court, but—
(a)this is without prejudice to the operation of section 31E(1)(a) of the Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984 (family court has High Court's powers) in relation to the powers of the High Court that are limited or conferred by those provisions of this section, and
(b)section 31E(1)(b) of that Act (family court has county court's powers) does not apply in relation to the powers of the county court that are limited or conferred by those provisions of this section.]
X1(5)The enactments specified in Part III of Schedule 2 shall have effect subject to the amendments set out in that Part, being amendments relating to the penalties and procedure in respect of certain offences of contempt in coroner’s courts, county courts and magistrates’ courts.
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