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Colorado Family Law Court Order Violations Lawyer

Elkus & Sisson attorneysFor some lucky people, the end of divorce or custody proceedings truly means the end of their family law struggles. Both parties go on to comply with the court order in full, minimizing the need for further legal intervention. Not everyone is this lucky, though. In some cases, co-parents intentionally violate the court order to get their way, turn their children against their other parent, or try to benefit financially. In others, they willfully misinterpret the court order or genuinely think they are above it.

Regardless of why you’ve found yourself dealing with a co-parent or ex-spouse in violation of your court order, you’re likely frustrated and agitated. We understand. Our team of Denver family law attorneys, led by attorney Robert Pomper is ready to help you hold the other party accountable.

Greenwood Village Attorneys Serving the Denver Metro Area

Elkus & Sisson, P.C. are family court order violations attorneys in Greenwood Village located just a short drive from downtown Denver. Our address is 7100 E Belleview Avenue, Suite 101 Greenwood Village, CO 80111 (open in Google Maps). Call us today at (303) 567-7981 or fill out a contact form and we will call you to schedule an appointment to discuss your families legal needs.

When Your Ex Violates Your Court Order

Whether a divorce agreement or custody agreement is handed down by the court or agreed upon by you and your ex, it is legally binding. Both parties are legally obligated to abide by it, and failing to do so can lead to co-parenting issues, financial losses, and disrupted co-parenting relationships. Some of the most common family law court order violations include:

  • Failing to pay child support: This is a serious court order violation that has a direct negative impact on the children’s quality of life and forces the other parent to compensate for the other parent’s choice not to pay. The parent who is supposed to receive child support can ask the court to step in.
  • Interfering with co-parent’s parenting time: Interfering with parenting time is perhaps one of the most egregious violations and one that can destroy any faith in the co-parenting relationship. Unfortunately, this is a very common technique used by high-conflict co-parents. They know that failing to return the children on time or attempting to seize extra time can cause significant stress and anxiety for the other parent. When a violation concerns interfering with parenting time, the Court allows enforcement remedies with additional remedies to help the parent whose parentings rights are being violated. 
  • Ignoring custody orders: Your court order likely has specific clauses about who can make decisions regarding the child’s medical care, religion, extracurricular activities, and other important needs. When a parent who’s supposed to share decision-making responsibility makes unilateral parenting choices or intentionally hides their choices from the other parent, they violate the court order.
  • Failing to transfer property: The court order specifies what must happen to the marital property and how it must be transferred to the appropriate party. If your ex-spouse misses the deadline and makes no attempts to transfer your property to you, you can take them to court.
  • Failing to pay debts: A divorce agreement also specifies who pays which debts. When one spouse fails to pay a shared debt, it can affect the other spouse’s credit rating and lead to collection calls.

court of appealsWhat is an Entry of Judgment?

An entry of support judgment essentially makes it easier to enforce the court order to pay child support. Per state law, each child support payment that’s due becomes a judgment when the party fails to pay it. An entry of support judgment, along with an affidavit of arrears, clarifies which payments have been missed and how much is owed to the other parent.

When submitting these documents, you may also have to submit the payment history from the Family Support Registry. Furthermore, the party owed child support can also add interest at the rate of 12% per year calculated monthly.

Once the entry of judgment is filed, there are numerous ways you can enforce it. Much depends on the specific circumstances of your ex’s financial well-being and income sources. You may seek to garnish their bank account, impose a lien on their real estate, or have their wages garnished.

Contempt Proceedings in Family Law

When your ex or co-parent ignores or blatantly violates the terms of your court order, you must take action and hire an attorney to enforce the order. Contempt of court occurs when someone violates the court order or interferes with court proceedings. Direct contempt refers to inappropriate or disruptive courtroom behavior, which does happen in family law. However, this is far less common than indirect contempt, which refers to a party’s violation of a court order outside of the actual courtroom setting.

Upon your ex’s violation of the court order, your attorney can file a Motion for Citation for Contempt of Court. This is likely not something you want to do every single time they violate the court order, as it will take up a significant amount of your time and effort. It’s often best used when there is a clear pattern of misbehavior and willful violation of the order. You may go this route if the other party withholds your child from you, fails to pay your spousal or child support, does not hand over assets given to you in the divorce agreement, enrolls the child at a new school or medical facility without your input, or puts the child in danger by ignoring their medical needs.

There are different ways the court may take action in contempt proceedings. First, they may order remedial sanctions. This forces the other party to make the situation right to clear the contempt charges. Should they fail to do so, they may face extra fines, have to pay your attorney’s fees, or even be put in jail. Punitive sanctions are reserved for when the offender shows a wanton disregard and disrespect for the court order. Beyond just violating the court order, they discredit the court’s authority and standing. You cannot remedy punitive sanctions; the offending party must serve the punishment as ordered.

Reach Out Today and Preserve the Integrity of Your Court Order With Elkus & Sisson, P.C.

You deserve to count on the terms of your court order being upheld. It’s crucial for your co-parenting relationship, your ability to provide for your child, and your mental well-being. Push back against willful, flagrant violations with Elkus & Sisson, P.C. Call us at 303-567-7981 or get in touch online to take the first step.