Filing Contempt Against Your Ex
That difficult divorce is finally behind you, but the stress of dealing with your ex, unfortunately, is not. Because you share children with your former spouse, you are stuck enduring many of the same behaviors that were so frustrating during your marriage and throughout the divorce process. Attempting to navigate life with a family plan to which your ex is completely unwilling to adhere is driving you bonkers and is upsetting to the kids as well. What options do you have if you are experiencing difficulties with an ex who refuses to comply with the arrangements laid out in your divorce papers? Fundamentally, you are dealing with a former spouse who is in contempt of a formal court order. If you’ve already tried to both sweet-talk and pressure your ex to no avail, you may not know where to turn now. Your best bet moving forward includes the assistance and guidance of a tough, local family law attorney, who understands that the ultimate goal is protecting the best interests of your children, and that may require some difficult legal work.
When one parent refuses to comply with visitation orders, it is problematic for both the other parent and for the children who are stuck in the middle of the conflict. If mediation doesn’t resolve the issue, it may be necessary to file a Motion for Family Access Order, which can produce results more quickly than a motion for contempt. In a hearing, the court may require the offending parent to provide access to the child to make up for missed time, may order counseling for both parent and child, and may fine the parent who is not complying with the parenting plan.
Motion for Contempt
If your former spouse doesn’t show up for hearings or and the problems persist for other reasons, it may be time to pursue a Motion for Contempt against your spouse. A successful case will demonstrate that your spouse knows the content of the court order and is capable of meeting expectations, but simply chooses not to comply with the terms of the agreement. Your ex will have the chance to offer up their version of events, so coming prepared with evidence of your complaint such as documented specifics showing non-compliance is essential. Contempt is punishable by fines, a requirement to pay your legal fees, and even possibly jail time.
Dealing with Support Issues
If your ex is not making required child support payments, it can become a serious legal problem for them as time goes on, leading to felony charges. Wage garnishments, the seizure of bank accounts, and other interventions only work when the deadbeat parent can be located, and if that’s a problem, it may require investigative services.
The Help You Need
At WiseLieberman our committed and persistent Boca Raton family law attorneys have your best interests in mind, and work toward positive outcomes before, during, and after divorce. If you are struggling with a former spouse who refuses to comply with the terms of the divorce, we can help. Contact us for a confidential consultation in our office today.