State v. Welch

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Appellate Procedure
  • Date Filed: 11-29-2017
  • Case #: A158592
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: DeHoog, P.J., for the Court; Shorr, J.; & Aoyagi, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

Mootness arises when a finding from the court will have “no practical effect on the rights of the parties.” State v. Langford, 260 Or App 61, 66, 317 P3d 905 (2013). A judgment of contempt by itself does not create “sufficient stigma to save an appeal from being moot.” State ex rel State of Oregon v. Hawash, 230 Or App 427, 428, 215 P3d 124 (2009).

Defendant appealed a judgment for punitive contempt for violating a restraining order. Defendant argued his appeal was not moot because the social stigma and possibility of future adverse consequences attached to a judgment of punitive contempt were sufficient to permit a finding that his appeal was not moot. The State argued Defendant’s appeal was moot because the trial judge imposed no sanctions and simply required Defendant to abide by the conditions of the restraining order, which he was required to do regardless of any other judgment. Mootness arises when a finding from the court will have “no practical effect on the rights of the parties.” State v. Langford, 260 Or App 61, 66, 317 P3d 905 (2013). A judgment of contempt by itself does not create “sufficient stigma to save an appeal from being moot.” State ex rel State of Oregon v. Hawash, 230 Or App 427, 428, 215 P3d 124 (2009). The Court of Appeals determined the mere possibility of future adverse consequences is not adequate to render a dismissal inappropriate. The Court held the trial court did not err because Defendant failed to identify any collateral consequences from the punitive contempt judgment. Appeal dismissed. 

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