There are many reasons you might need to return to court after completing your divorce. For example, you might need to ask for a modification of your divorce decree because your or your former spouse’s circumstances have changed. However, you may also face situations in which your ex-spouse has not complied with the legally binding terms in your divorce decree.
Sometimes, you and your former spouse might be able to meet with each other to address these issues without getting the courts involved, but in other situations, you might need to take legal action to enforce your divorce decree. Either way, you will want to work with a family law attorney who is experienced in addressing post-decree matters.
Post-Decree Enforcement Issues
The terms set forth in a divorce decree are legally binding, and both parties are required by law to follow them. If either party does not meet their court-ordered obligations, the other party may bring the case back before the court to enforce these terms. In some cases, the parties may be able to address and resolve these issues when they arise, while in other situations, a non-compliant spouse may face penalties such as being held in contempt of court. Here are some examples of common post-decree enforcement issues:
- Failure to Divide Property and Assets as Agreed – In some cases, a divorce decree might require one of the spouses to sell a house or other major assets and split the proceeds from the sale with the other spouse. If a buyer has not yet been found at the time the divorce was finalized, an ex-spouse may end up keeping the property or selling it without sharing the profits. One party may also refuse to transfer funds or turn over property as ordered in the divorce. If a person knowingly violated the terms of a divorce decree, then the other party can ask the court to enforce the decree and also impose any additional penalties deemed appropriate by the judge.
- Not Paying Spousal Support or Child Support – Legal action may also be necessary if an ex-spouse fails to meet their obligations for paying financial support. If a person has a legitimate reason for being unable to pay support, they may be able to ask for a modification of the divorce decree. However, until this modification goes into effect, financial obligations will continue to be owed, and the recipient may take action to collect past-due support, as well as interest on missed payments.
Contact a Hillside Post-Decree Matters Lawyer
If you are concerned about your ex-spouse’s failure to follow the terms of your divorce decree, reach out to the Law Office of Vincent C. Machroli, P.C. to learn about your legal options for post-divorce enforcement. Contact our highly-rated Oak Park divorce attorney by calling 708-449-7404 for a free consultation.