How Do I Enforce My Divorce Order

Court orders and separation agreements are enforced by a court of law differently.  A separation agreement is a contract between the parties. If spouses enter into a separation agreement and it is not incorporated into a divorce decree, the parties must file a breach of contract claim with the court in order to enforce the agreement.   Orders or incorporated separation agreements provide the parties with more efficient options for enforcement.

An order that is signed by a judge that resolves equitable distribution, such as marital assets and debts, or the obligation to pay child support, alimony, and post-separation support are enforceable by contempt of court. The aggrieved party can file motion to request the trial court order the offending party to show cause as to why the offending party should not be held in contempt of court.  The aggrieved party can request the court to award attorney’s fees to the aggrieved party for the expenses incurred to enforce the court order.  If found to be in contempt of a court order a judge can fine the party, place the offending party on probation, or put the party in jail.

Consult an experienced attorney about you specific situation so that you can obtain legal advice about how to enforce an order or how to defend yourself from a motion and order requesting that you be held in contempt of court.