PLEASE NOTE: We are still open and operational! To protect your safety in response to the threats of COVID-19, we are offering our clients the ability to meet with us in person, via telephone or through video conferencing. Please call our office to discuss your options. click here for Covid 19 updates
Laura Dale & Associates, P.C.

If your ex-spouse is defying a divorce settlement

You would think that having a legal "settlement" in place would mean that the terms within it are settled. If you and your spouse haggled over the details of your divorce settlement, whether through mediation or litigation, you may have felt relieved to reach an agreement, receive a judge's stamp of approval and move forward.

Some divorced people find themselves in a situation where their exes fail or refuse to comply with the terms of the court-ordered settlement. You may be struggling to pay your bills without spousal support payments your ex is supposed to make, or perhaps you're always on the defensive with your children because of your spouse's defiance of child custody terms. These types of problems can be very stressful and demand action.

The terms of your divorce settlement

Your ex may be unable to comply with the divorce order if, for example, he or she is out of work or has a work schedule that conflicts with the custody arrangements in the court order. If this is the case, it is up to your ex to seek a modification of the order to avoid legal repercussions you may rightfully request. If you suspect your ex is simply refusing to comply, you may need legal counsel to help protect your rights.

A divorce settlement typically covers basic elements like:

  • Child custody and visitation
  • Child support payments
  • Spousal support payments
  • Division of assets
  • Division of debts

Your agreement may have more or fewer elements, but you and your spouse are bound to everything included in the document, even if it seems trivial, unless a subsequent court order says otherwise.

If your spouse defies the order

From the time the judge approves the settlement, you may wish to begin documenting your ex's actions. You may begin to see a pattern of him or her showing up late to drop off the children for your parenting time or missing a spousal support payment with many excuses for not paying. If your spouse has decided to defy the order, you will have documentation that will help support your case.

An attorney can assist you in filing a contempt of court order against your spouse. A successful petition could result in a judge ordering the garnishment of your spouse's wages for unpaid support. If custody is the issue, a court may go so far as to remove custody rights from your spouse. A continued lack of compliance in these matters could even lead to time in jail.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
  • Board Certified
  • IAFL
  • Super Lawyers 2019
  • Best Lawyers
  • Avvo Rating
  • Avvo Rating
  • Avvo Client Choice 2014
  • Avvo Client Choice 2014
  • Best Law Firms Badge
  • Laura Dale
  • Texas Bar Today Top Ten Badge

Contact Our Experienced Team Today

Se Habla Español | Nous Parlons Français

Due to the experience our lawyers have in many specialized areas, you can rely on us to put together the right team to handle your case, even if it centers on complex issues such as international family law, business valuation or bankruptcy. Contact us today to make an appointment to discuss your needs with a knowledgeable lawyer.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Laura Dale & Associates, P.C.
email us for a response

1800 Saint James Place
Suite 620
Houston, TX 77056

Phone: 713-574-7952
Fax: 713-600-1718
Houston Law Office Map

Review Us