Enforcing Alimony Agreements in New Jersey
Court orders regarding the payment of spousal support, or alimony, remain valid and legally enforceable until the expiration date specified by the court or the parties’ agreement. Failing to pay alimony, either by choice or out of a sudden inability to do so, can result in serious financial and legal penalties.
Any violation of a spousal support order should be taken seriously. You have the legal right to the support that the court has ordered you to receive, but non-compliance with alimony agreements can be difficult to handle without the help of a seasoned attorney. If you need help enforcing an alimony agreement in New Jersey, consider reaching out to a spousal support lawyer with experience handling this unique and often contentious situation.
Options for Seeking Past-Due Alimony Payments
It is important to recognize that legal action is not always the best option to pursue immediately after someone misses or is late in making an alimony payment. In some cases, the party expected to pay support may have experienced a sudden and drastic change in their financial security. In these cases, it may be better to jointly seek a modification of the existing support order to ensure both parties can live with the modified terms.
Open communication with the delinquent party can sometimes be a productive way of resolving a minor issue without involving the court. However, in the event that someone subject to a support order continually refuses to make payments or deliberately disobeys the terms of that order, it may be necessary to file a motion to enforce an alimony order or agreement.
The party filing such a motion can make specific demands in the motion regarding how they would like the matter to be ideally resolved. Depending on the circumstances, a person in New Jersey seeking enforcement of their spousal support agreement can request that past-due payments be provided on time, demand reimbursement for court fees, request a court order requiring on-time payments in the future, or seek a bench warrant to have the delinquent party arrested. One of our legal professionals can help an individual in filing a motion to enforce an alimony agreement, ensuring that the necessary steps are taken.
Potential Court Actions for Enforcing an Alimony Agreement
There are also several actions a court can take to ensure a party who defaults on their spousal support obligations makes up for this misconduct. These include but are not strictly limited to:
- Ordering the delinquent party to provide overdue payments with interest
- Garnishment of wages
- Property liens
- “Writs of execution” to compel a delinquent party’s bank to withdraw overdue payments directly from their bank account
- Contempt of court orders punishable by fines and possibly incarceration
A skilled lawyer in New Jersey can go over the potential actions a court may take to enforce an alimony agreement during a private consultation.
Discuss Options for Enforcing Alimony Agreements with a New Jersey Attorney
In a perfect world, there would be no need for courts to get involved after putting a spousal support order in place. In reality, though, there are all too many examples of people refusing to pay alimony to their former spouse, creating a complicated and exhausting legal issue for both parties.
Assistance from a dedicated legal professional can go a long way toward simplifying the process of enforcing alimony agreements in New Jersey. Call today to discuss your options.