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Is Cursing In Public Illegal?

By Hager & Schwartz, P.A.

November 12, 2021

Is Cursing In Public Illegal?

Many people do things in public that others may find…. off-putting. This may be public displays of affection, being loud and rambunctious, or having a verbal argument. Cursing is much less ‘taboo’ than it used to be, so you may be wondering, is cursing in public enough to warrant a disorderly conduct charge? Let’s go over where the law stands on cursing in public in Florida.

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What is Disorderly Conduct?

TheFlorida Statute for disorderly conduct clearly states a list of activities that are prohibited.

For something to be considered disorderly conduct, it must:

  • Corrupt public morals
  • Outrage the sense of public decency
  • Affect the peace and quiet of witnesses
  • Breach the peace

You may already be thinking, these are incredibly vague guidelines. It’s true, disorderly conduct charges generally depend on the discretion of the arresting officer.

More specific behaviors that usually warrant disorderly conduct charges include:

  • Unlawful loitering
  • Public drunkenness
  • Fighting
  • Rioting
  • Refusing to disperse

Cursing in Public

Generally, cursing in public is not an illegal offense.

However, there are some instances where you still could be charged with disorderly conduct when cursing.

This includes:

  • If your language incites violence
  • If your language incites illegal activity
  • If you are shouting threats

If your profanity draws a crowd or warrants a threat to public safety, then could face disorderly conduct charges.

Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense

Sometimes, people get a little too rambunctious on the weekend and find themselves in legal trouble. If this happens to you, call Hager & Schwartz, P.A. for a judgment-free consultation. We understand that mistakes happen and we want to help ensure your mistake does not end up on your permanent record.