Enforcement of Court Orders

Once a judge signs a court order – whether it is a divorce decree or a child support order – the parties must follow that order. Refusing to follow an order can result in serious consequences. A court has a lot of power to enforce its orders and can severely penalize the party violating the order. If you have questions about enforcing an order, our experienced lawyers are here to help

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Enforcing Child Support and Child Custody Orders

In every child custody and child support case, a court signs a final order. [*child support, child custody]. The order can be based on the agreement of the parents or can be the result of a trial in front of a judge. Texas law allows a court to enforce child custody and child support orders by “contempt.” The contempt order can include:

  • A jail sentence of up to 180 days & a fine
  • A “community supervision” order that is like being on probation
  • A requirement to pay attorney’s fees to the other party
  • If child support is involved, a requirement to pay past-due child support

A contempt case is a very technical court proceeding and must be handled correctly. Our experienced lawyers are here to help with your enforcement case, whether your ex-spouse is violating the order, or you are accused of doing so.

Enforcement of Property Division

A court that granted a divorce can enforce the property division through an enforcement lawsuit. Enforcement may be necessary, for example, if a party refuses to sell a home as required by the divorce decree. Sometimes one party will refuse to cooperate with delivery of property, such as money in an account awarded to his or her spouse. Texas law gives the court several tools to enforce its orders. The court’s powers can include compelling a party to deliver property, appointing a third-party to sell property, ordering a party to sign documents necessary to transfer property.

There are some limitations on the court’s power to enforce its order, and it is important to work with a lawyer who understands these requirements. For instance, the court may not modify the property division in an enforcement suit or jail someone for failing to pay a debt. Our lawyers have experience with these issues and are here to help with your property enforcement case.

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