There is a certain amount of finality when a family law court creates an order. Knowing that the matter was taken before a judge who issued a ruling can help both sides find peace of mind after a troublesome dispute. However, there is nothing that guarantees a court order is going to be final. In some cases, the court’s attention will need to be sought again to set things right again, such as in cases of enforcement or modification.
When Court Orders Must Be Enforced
Family law court orders are powerful legal tools, but it can only do so much on its own. When an ex-spouse or another party simply refuses to acknowledge the clauses within a court order, it can be a serious problem that needs a solution that is just as strict.
Common examples of transgressions against family law court orders include:
- Not meeting child custody order and visitation demands.
- Not paying child support.
- Refusing to pay alimony.
- Relocating children without permission.
When one party seriously or consistently ignores or fails to follow a family law court order, the other party being affected by those failures needs to consider enforcement as a remedy. In brief, enforcement involves requesting the court to take additional steps against the transgressor to ensure compliance in the future. The court may resort to wage garnishments, license revocation, fines, and even jail time against someone who is knowingly breaking the rules set out by a previous court order.
Modifying a Court Order
On the other hand, some court orders are unwittingly violated due a significant change in circumstances. Imagine if you had to provide a large quantity of child support each month but unexpectedly lost your job. You would most likely not be able to meet your child support obligations, not to mention pay costs related to your own necessities.
You may be able to request the court to modify a preexisting order to make your life easier, or to make it possible for you to meet obligations. The court will want to see proof of your change of circumstances, though.
Courts tend to approve modifications only if one or more of these three factors are present:
- Must move to a new town or state for gainful employment.
- Dramatic and unplanned loss of income.
- Child or parent becomes seriously ill or injured.
Supportive Legal Counsel You Can Lean On
Both enforcement and modification of a court order present a difficult legal situation. To cut the guesswork out and move forward with confidence, whether you need the court to take action in enforcement or see your side with a modification, you can rely on Boudreaux Hunter & Associates, LLC and our Houston family law attorneys. We have managed countless divorce cases and disputes throughout the years, and we would be able to apply our experience and insight to your own. Fill out an online contact form today to request a case evaluation with our team.