If your former spouse is refusing to pay the alimony payments that are
outlined in your divorce settlement, you might be wondering if there is
are any courses of action you can take to rectify this and ensure you
obtain the money you are owed. First, it is important that you seek legal
representation immediately. A skilled family law attorney will be able
to help you choose your best path for legal recourse and ensure every
step is properly executed.
It is also crucial that you keep evidence that proves your ex-spouse failed
to make payments, did not make full payments, or failed to make these
payments on time. Additionally, you should also explain how your ex-spouse’s
failure to make his or her alimony payments caused you financial difficulty.
Contempt of Court for Non-Payment of Alimony
If your spouse continues to disobey the court’s order to pay you
the alimony you are owed, a judge might institute a charge of contempt
of court against him or her. Once this happens, your spouse will have
a contempt of court case with a second judge regarding the non-payment
of alimony. Your former spouse would likely obey the second judge’s
order since, at this stage, he or she could potentially face fines or
Other Methods for Collecting Alimony
The most common methods for collecting unpaid alimony are through mediation,
a lawsuit in a higher court or small claims court, and wage garnishment.
If you used mediation to achieve your divorce settlement, this would essentially
be the same set-up. You and your spouse will sit with a certified mediator
and work on an agreement. You would also be able to have your respective
attorneys present to provide legal advice and ensure your interests are
If you were to file a lawsuit, this would essentially be an action against
your former spouse for debt collection. During the trial, both you and
your spouse would present your evidence. Depending on how much you are
owed, you might end up in small claims court or a higher court.
The final option, wage garnishment, is generally more difficult than the
other options since federal law protects a certain percentage of a person's
income and the amount permitted by wage garnishment is regulated. It is
possible that, even if you were successful in a wage garnishment action,
you would have to wait in line after others to whom your former spouse
owes money. Depending on your order in line, you might end up waiting
a long while before you get paid.
Alimony Attorney in Orlando
If your spouse failed to make
alimony payments, you need to obtain the skilled legal assistance of an attorney
who is experienced in handling such complex matters. At R. Gregory Colvin,
LLC, our family law attorney in Orlando is backed by more than 25 years
of experience in litigation and negotiation.
Get started on your case today and
contact our law office at (407) 603-3460 to request a free initial case evaluation.