Enforcement & Contempt
Sometimes a party fails to obey an order or judgment of the Court. This is often an extremely frustrating experience for the other party. When that happens, the person who benefits from the order must make a request to the Court to force the other party to comply with the requirements of the order or judgment.
If you believe that a Court order or judgment in your case is being disobeyed and needs to be enforced, we can help.
We can provide you with information as to how, where, and when to ask the Court to enforce a Court order or judgment. We can counsel you as to what enforcement techniques and procedures are available and assist you in selecting the most effective for your particular case. In addition, we can draft and submit to the Court an appropriate request to enforce an order or judgment on your behalf.
If you would like to discuss enforcing an order or judgment made by the Court in your case, please contact us to schedule an appointment for a free consultation.
If you would like more information about the law and procedures for making a request to enforce an order or judgment, please continue reading.
What Types of Orders and Judgments Typically Require Enforcement?
Any order or judgment made by the Court can be the subject of an enforcement procedure. In divorce and family law cases, most enforcement activity involves orders or judgments for the payment of money and child custody and visitation.
What Procedures Are Available to Enforce Orders and Judgments?
A party seeking to enforce an order has a range of available options, depending on the level of non-compliance and the nature of the order or judgment. You can ask the Court to enter another order specifically directing that the other party comply with the order at issue, or direct that the non-complying party suffer some adverse consequence if the situation is not corrected within a certain period of time. In addition, the Court can preclude or prevent the non-complying party from introducing certain evidence or proving or denying certain facts because of the violation of the order, or it can direct a judgment on the merits of the entire case in favor or the party seeking compliance with the order or judgment. As a last resort, the Court can hold the other party in civil or criminal contempt of Court, which can result in a period of incarceration in the county jail.
Can the Court Force the Other Party to Pay Legal Fees ?
Yes. A Court can order the party who is not complying with an order or judgment to pay the costs and fees incurred in filing and litigating an enforcement proceeding.