Enforcing Court Orders in St. Louis
Understanding Your Legal Rights in Missouri
Once a couple has filed for the divorce, all of the terms and conditions that have been laid out in their divorce decree are legally binding and enforceable. This means that either party would have the right to take legal action if the other fails to uphold their end of the agreement. If your former spouse has refused to comply with the terms of your divorce, you should not hesitate to learn more about your options. Speak to a St. Louis divorce attorney at The Buxner Law Firm today during a free, in-office, 30-minute consultation.
We may be able to assist you in enforcing your court order if your ex-spouse has:
- Failed to comply with your child custody arrangement
- Failed to make scheduled child support payments
- Failed to turn over assets or property included in the divorce
- Failed to uphold their obligation to pay spousal support
How do I enforce a child custody order?
Whether your child custody arrangement was sorted out during a divorce or after paternity was established, the terms of this arrangement are legally binding. This means that both parents must comply with any and all custody and visitation schedules that have been laid out in the court order. If you are a non-custodial parent who has been granted visitation rights, for example, the custodial parent must make the child readily available for these visits at scheduled times. If they keep you from seeing your child, you can take action.
Similarly, the parent with visitation rights must also adhere to the limitations of the court order. If the non-custodial parent decides to keep the child for longer than is allowed, their actions could have serious legal implications. Regardless of what side of the arrangement you are on, you have rights that are legally enforceable. In fact, Missouri Revised Statutes § 452.425 states that law enforcement can be called in to enforce the rights of either parent when the provisions of a court order have been violated.
How do I enforce child or spousal support?
If your ex-spouse has been ordered to pay child support or spousal maintenance as a condition of your divorce, they must comply with this obligation every month. Whether their payments have been coming in late or not at all, it is your right to seek help from a family court judge. The first step would be to file a petition with the court explaining how your former spouse has failed to adhere to the provisions of your divorce decree. Next, a court date would be scheduled, the other party would be served, and the case would be heard by a judge.
The court may be able to enforce child or spousal support payments by:
- Garnishing the other party’s wages or personal earnings
- Holding the other party in contempt of court until they comply
- Intercepting the other party’s tax refund or lottery winnings
- Freezing the other party’s bank account until they pay what is due
- Placing a lien on the other party’s personal property or real estate
- Temporarily suspending the other party’s driver’s license
Hire an AV®-Rated Family Law Attorney
Going through a divorce is never easy, but matters can become that much more stressful when your ex-spouse refuses to uphold their end of the agreement. Don’t let a non-compliant spouse prevent you from getting the financial support or the time with your child that you deserve. Count on the St. Louis divorce lawyers at The Buxner Law Firm to fight for your rights throughout every step of the legal process. We offer a free, in-office, 30-minute consultation to all potential clients, so you shouldn't wait any longer to give us a call.
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