What If My Spouse Is Not Following Orders?
The power of the court does not end when a court order is issued. The parties involved are required to adhere to the provisions in the orders. If there is a failure to do so, the legal system allows for various actions to be taken to enforce the order. This is called Contempt of Court. Fam C §290. In general, any person who willfully disobeys a lawful court order, and has both knowledge of and the ability to comply with that order, may be found in contempt of court and may be fined, required to pay attorney fees, ordered to perform community service, or imprisoned.
If the contempt alleged is for failure to pay child, spousal, or family support, each month for which payment has not been made in full may be alleged and punished as a separate count. CCP §1218.5(a).
Restraining orders, including the standard family law restraining orders prohibiting the transfer of property during a dissolution proceeding, are enforceable by contempt. Fam C §290
Whether it is a child custody/visitation violation or a spousal support issue, there are several legal actions that can be taken for enforcement. It starts with a review of your situation, and a discussion with you about moving forward to get the matter under control, the support paid, or your visitation with your children complied with.
In some cases, all it will require is the threat of pursuing a contempt of court citation to get a person to finally respond and act as required to comply with the original court order. Other cases may require seeking a court order to garnish wages, access property or get tax refunds applied to an outstanding balance for child support or spousal support.
You should not have to endure the frustration and hardship resulting from another person’s failure to follow the rules. My firm can help you pursue court order enforcement and take the weight off your shoulders. I have a great understanding of state family law, and extensive courtroom experience to bring to the table for you. Contact my office today for more information.
Fam C § 290
A judgment or order made or entered pursuant to this code may be enforced by the court by execution, the appointment of a receiver, or contempt, or by any other order as the court in its discretion determines from time to time to be necessary. [Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 86, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 2007]