What You Need to Know About Divorce and Contempt of Court
A divorce legally ends your marriage contract. You receive a divorce decree that lays out the terms of the divorce. Part of that decree includes a stipulation that you both agree to abide by the terms of the decree upon punishment. That punishment consists of a contempt of court charge. If you are uncertain about any part of your divorce decree, the following information may be helpful:
How Can You Be Held in Contempt of Court?
Both you and your spouse can be found in contempt of court if you violate any part of your divorce terms. The more common issues that result in contempt of court charges include not paying spousal or child support, not complying with marital asset division, or not abiding by a restraining order. You can also be found in contempt of court if you lie under oath during your divorce court proceeding.
What Can You Do?
If your former spouse does something that you think should be found in contempt of court, the first step is to call your attorney. They will listen to the details of the issue and first determine if there is a need to proceed to court. If contempt of court is deemed necessary, your attorney will work with you to collect the necessary evidence to provide to the court. Once you collect the evidence, your attorney can file the citation for a contempt of court charge.
Once the citation goes to court, you will get a court date for a hearing to deal with the issue. Both you and your spouse have to go before the court. Your spouse will be served a summons from the court to appear for the hearing. At that time, your spouse will plead guilty or not guilty. If your spouse does not attend the hearing, the court can issue a warrant for their arrest.
If you are being served a summons for a contempt of court charge, call your attorney right away. They are there to assist you in all aspects of your divorce. You will need help to understand what your rights are and help you avoid any problem that could land you in jail.
A contempt of court charge is a serious issue, even in divorce. To avoid this from happening, you should heed any advice given by your attorney. Always follow through with the terms of your divorce, keep good records, and call your divorce attorney any time you have a problem.