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Specialty tag(s): Modification and Enforcement, Child Custody, Child Support

How to Enforce a Court Order for Child Support or Custody

Megan Decadi | March 5, 2024

If your co-parent isn’t complying with the custody agreement or child support that’s required under the terms of your divorce, you can file a lawsuit to enforce these orders. You’ll need two things to seek enforcement of a court order for child support or custody:  specific documentation to back up your claims, and an experienced family law attorney who has the knowledge and experience to help you advocate for the best interests of your child or children.

Step 1: Documentation of Failure to Comply With the Court Order

Before trying to enforce a child custody order in court, make sure that you have proof to support your case. Keep a log of every time the order was not followed, including specific details like the dates, times, and circumstances surrounding the noncompliance. The same is true when you need to enforce a child support order: Notify the state attorney general of the situation, and keep records of the amounts and dates of payments received or not received.

Step 2: Filing an Enforcement Lawsuit

To enforce a child custody or support order in court, you’ll need help from an experienced family law attorney who understands the intricacies of enforcement lawsuits and can help you build a strong case. A knowledgeable attorney whom you can trust can also support you in taking a long-term view when short-term problems present themselves. Remember, the most important thing isn’t that you have been wronged: It’s that your child has been wronged.

Your attorney will help you pursue a resolution that’s in the best interests of the child, which may not be the option you would have thought of first. For example, you may want to have your ex thrown in jail for not paying child support but, if they’re only not paying because they’re currently unemployed, that might be an unreasonable outcome to pursue. Being jailed won’t help your ex to be able to support your child financially, and it’s likely to harm both your co-parenting relationship and the relationship between the child and both parents.

When you need a respected child custody attorney who can help you stand up for your child’s best interests, Goranson Bain Ausley is here to help. Contact us today for a consultation to get started.

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