During the divorce process, there are certain steps that need to be taken
before the divorce can be finalized, and the couple are no longer considered
spouses. At the end of it all, the couples will have a finalized divorce
agreement by which they must abide. This agreements sets forth certain
factors that may affect the two parties long after divorce, such as property
division, child support, child custody, and spousal support or maintenance.
These are all things that must be decided on during the divorce and are
considered legally binding by the court once the divorce is final.
It is the responsibility of each party to make sure they follow the divorce
orders completely or they may be considered non-compliant with the agreement.
This occurs when one party refuses to pay the other spouse support or
they don’t follow through with the custody and parenting time arrangements.
When this does happen, it is important to understand what options you
may have and what you can do to enforce these orders. At Matthew Sheasby,
Attorney at Law, our
San Bernardino divorce attorneys are equipped with the necessary knowledge to help you deal with non-compliance
in divorce cases.
Non-Compliance in Child Custody
When a couple has children and they decide to divorce, child custody often
becomes one of the most contentious matters as it deals with how much
time each parent gets to spend with the children, as well as where they
are going to live. In most cases, the court will make their decision based
on the best interests of the children. The parents must follow these standards,
but if they don’t, the court may take action against the non-compliant
parent. For instance, if the non-custodial parent doesn’t pick up
the children regularly for their time, they may face an increase in child
support because they are not spending as much time with their children.
This is also the case if the custodial parent withholds visitation time.
Non-Compliance in Child Support
It is the duty of both parents to provide financial support for the child.
In many divorce cases, the non-custodial parent will be ordered to pay
child support to the custodial parent in order to care for the children
and pay for certain things. When the payor fails to provide support, they
can face a contempt action by failing to adhere to the court order. This
means the court can take various actions against the non-paying party
to collect the support payments or to penalize the party for non-compliance.
This may include garnishing the wages of the payor, a jail sentence, and more.
Non-Compliance in Spousal Support
Committing contempt can carry both civil and criminal penalties. When one
party fails to pay spousal support, the court may seek a wage garnishment,
payment for attorney’s fees, fines, and a possible jail sentence.
These are all done to convince the payor that paying the support is the
best option and avoids any trouble in the long run. Prior to a contempt
action, though, the court may issue the non-compliant party an ultimatum,
warning him or her about the possible consequences if they continue to
violate the divorce order.
Before you decide to take action against a non-compliant party, you need
to take necessary steps to prove that the party is in contempt of the
court order. This means you must show the party knew of the order, had
the necessary ability to comply with the order, they knowingly violated
the order, and they lack a reasonable excuse for the violation. In order
to prove this, your best option is to read your order carefully, reach
out to a lawyer, give the ultimatum, file the contempt action if necessary,
and attend the hearing.
If your ex-spouse is not complying with the court order after a divorce,
you may be able to take action. Call our San Bernardino divorce attorneys
at James D. Madden & Aruna P. Rodrigo, Family Law Attorneys to better understand your options
when dealing with non-compliance. Our team can explain the necessary steps
for you to take in order to hold your ex-spouse in contempt and force
actions to either have them comply or allow them to face the penalties.
We are dedicated to making sure your rights are protected after a divorce.
free consultation and we can walk you through the entire process and offer you the information
you need to take the next steps forward and seek a favorable resolution
in your case.