Uphold the Court’s Decision With The Stuart Firm
When you go through all the drama of a family lawsuit, the last thing you want to do is return to court. Unfortunately, individuals do not always follow court orders. When this occurs, you can file a motion for enforcement, and The Stuart Firm can help.
Whether your ex fails to pay child support, violates a restraining order, or refuses to honor a custody agreement, we are here for you. We can also help you if you’ve been forced into contempt proceedings by a vengeful former spouse.
No matter what you’re facing, you can call us at (432) 284-4411 – don’t hesitate to get started today.
When Does the Court Step In?
During a divorce, family courts often issue orders for things like child support, visitation, property division, and spousal maintenance (alimony). In some cases, such as those involving domestic violence, the judge may even issue a temporary restraining order.
Violating any of these orders is serious, so the court may step in again to enforce them if one party requests an enforcement hearing.
If you need to request or respond to an enforcement hearing in or around Midland, Texas, look no further than The Stuart Firm.
Which Orders Are Enforceable?
Not all court orders are enforceable. Before you can ask the court to enforce an order, you must first confirm the order is “clear, specific, and unambiguous as to the duties and responsibilities of the alleged violator.” In a restraining order, for example, one party must not come within a certain number of feet of another, so the order is clear, specific, and unambiguous. If the violator comes within x feet of the person with the restraining order, there is no question the order was violated.
Conversely, some child visitation orders are as vague as, “the parents will split time with their children 50/50.” If one parent decides to keep the child from January to May, the court cannot enforce this action because that parent has technically done nothing wrong.
When it comes to child custody, court orders must be very specific and list a time, place, and date to exchange children. This is why it’s so important to have a good attorney during a divorce.
Often, the same attorney who helped you request an enforceable order can help you request an enforcement hearing. If your order is not enforceable, a Midland enforcement hearing attorney can help you clarify an order and give the other party an opportunity to obey the order, as written.
How Does the Court Enforce an Order?
People who don’t follow court orders can be subject to contempt proceedings. If the court finds someone in contempt, the judge can punish that person with fines, jail time, or both.
For this reason, everyone who has been served with a citation should contact an attorney immediately. In some cases, the court may even appoint a lawyer to the person facing contempt.
Contempt does not always end with jail time. Courts may put individuals on probation with requirements like financial counseling and treatment for drug or alcohol addiction.
Ultimately, the court enforces an order by punishing the party that violated it and laying the groundwork to help prevent future violations.
Get More Information
Chapter 157 of the Texas Family Code defines the requirements of a motion for enforcement. This set of laws spells out pleadings and defenses, remedies, time limitations, and more. Whether you need to request an enforcement hearing or have received a complaint, you will have to follow these rules and navigate the legal system, which can be difficult without an aggressive and compassionate advocate.
Fortunately, you’ve found The Stuart Firm, and our legal team is experienced in the courtroom and 100% client-focused.
We know you don’t want to go back to court, but we can help you make sure the law works in your favor. At The Stuart Firm, we are proud to offer consultations where we can answer all your questions and address all your legal concerns.
Call us at (432) 284-4411 or contact us online to schedule a case review today.
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