What Should I Do if My Ex-Spouse Is Not Following the Divorce Agreement?
In New Jersey, divorce agreements may cover a number of issues, from child custody matters to the division of marital property. These agreements are enforceable by the New Jersey family courts. If your spouse has not been following the agreement in your case, there are steps you are able to take to file an action and have your spouse ordered to follow the agreement.
When a divorce is finalized, the conditions of the divorce are memorialized in a family court order. The conditions of the divorce may simply be the agreement that a couple has reached on their own or through mediation. Or, the conditions may reflect a judge’s decision at the end of a family court trial. Regardless, these conditions become enforceable by law.
First, if you feel that your ex-spouse has not been following the divorce agreement, you need to identify the specific clause in your agreement that he or she has violated. For example, was your ex-spouse denying your scheduled visitation with your children? Did your ex-spouse abuse drugs or alcohol in front of the children?
Next, you must gather any proof you can of the alleged violation. Simply telling a family court judge that someone was violating a court order is not enough. There are many different types of evidence you may gather to prove that your ex-spouse is not following an order—you may gather text messages, emails, Facebook posts, photographs, and even eyewitness statements that support your position.
You should consult with an experienced family court attorney to gain an understanding of the types of evidence you should be compiling. As you gather new pieces of evidence, turn those over to your attorney so that your attorney may continue building your case.
In many cases, the parties are able to reach an agreement before filing a new court case becomes necessary. The parties may be able to communicate through their attorneys about the alleged contempt and work through the issues. If not, however, they must turn to the family courts.
When someone is accused of violating a family court order, a contempt case must be filed. A contempt case is necessary when someone is accused of violating a court order. If an individual is found to be in contempt of court for violating a court order, that individual may be ordered to pay fines or even serve jail time.
During a contempt hearing, the parties may present evidence to support their positions and argue against the other party. They may present witness testimony and also present other types of evidence, such as documents. The judge then determines if the individual violated the family court order and must decide what penalties are proper.
Prevailing in a case is much more likely with the assistance of a skilled New Jersey divorce attorney
If you feel that your ex-spouse is violating your divorce agreement, you need to speak with one of our skilled New Jersey divorce attorneys as soon as possible to determine if a contempt action is necessary. At Lomurro Law, we are experienced in all types of family court matters, including divorce and contempt actions. To schedule your free consultation, call 732-482-9285 or contact us online.