Dedicated Family Law Attorneys Helping Parties Seek the Enforcement of Court Orders in Denton County Including Lewisville and Frisco, TX
Divorce decrees are legally-binding court orders. However, parties do not always do what they are ordered to do. One thing that we tell our clients when they finalize a divorce or resolve some other family law matter is this: A Divorce Decree (or other court order) is only a piece of paper unless and until the parties abide by the provisions contained therein. In other words, a court order means nothing and does not help anyone if both parties do not live up to their end of the agreement – or if they blatantly defy the court’s directives.
Unfortunately, we see this all too often in family law matters. In many cases, such as when a party does not contribute the required child support payments, or if he or she fails to pay for the health insurance premiums, the real victims are the children.
Other common cases of failure to comply with court orders include those involving child custody, property division, and spousal maintenance.
To compound matters, it is not always a simple matter of reminding a former spouse and/or co-parent to do what he or she is supposed to do. Many times, parties purposefully choose to avoid their court-ordered obligations. Their rationale is often based on a fundamental disagreement with the order, punishment, and/or indifference.
In some cases, complying with an order may no longer be feasible for a party. In these cases, however, his or her proper recourse is to abide by the order, properly request and receive the court’s permission to modify the existing order – NOT simply to stop compliance.
Failure to Abide by a Court Order: Unacceptable
Whether intentional or not, a party’s failure to abide by a court order is never OK; and it can result in serious consequences. The compliant party should not have to bear the effort, expense, and frustration of seeking enforcement of a court order. However, it is a reality, and it is a legal matter we can help you resolve.
We have experience handling a wide range of family law matters in Denton and throughout North Texas, including enforcement of court orders pertaining to divorce, child custody and child support.
Whatever the circumstances, and no matter how frustrating the situation can be, it is very important not to take matters into your own hands and try to right a wrong by committing another wrong. Going through the proper channels is the best way to obtain compliance by the other party. Contact our office for help.
When your former spouse or co-parent fails to abide by a court order, you may be best served by filing with the court a Motion to Enforce and/or a Motion for Contempt.
Motion for Enforcement
A Motion for Enforcement is often an effective option when you need the other party to adhere to some directive in the court’s order. This type of motion is often filed in cases where a parent fails to do something specific, such as returning a child to the other parent following parenting time, or failing to make a scheduled child support payment.
A Motion for Enforcement is also filed to seek performance of a financial obligation – such as turning over the proceeds from the sale of the marital home, or to file the requisite paperwork to effectuate the division of a retirement account.
When the court grants a Motion for Enforcement, it finds that the other party has failed to abide by an existing order AND it orders action. In most cases, if the offending party still fails to comply with the court’s directives, the repercussions are very serious, and can result in jail time.
Motion for Contempt
A Motion for Contempt is often filed to “put teeth” into an existing order. In other words, a court’s finding that a party is in contempt (i.e., disobeyment) results in serious consequences – likely more severe than found in the existing order. Sometimes, the filing of a Motion for Contempt is the only action that will convey the seriousness of the matter to the offending party.
Contact A Knowledgeable Denton Family Law Attorney Today to Help You Seek Enforcement of a Court Order
Call (940) 465-9872 or contact us here to schedule a complimentary consultation with a member of our experienced legal team. We are proud to serve Denton County and all of North Texas. We accept credit cards and have payment plans available for your convenience.
If it is time to seek enforcement of an existing court order, let us help you navigate the process.