Contempt is what happens when a person has violated an order or judgment given by a court. It applies to final divorce decrees, child custody orders, and child support orders.
Conditions of Contempt
To find a party guilty of contempt, the court has to do 2 things. First, the court has to find that the person did in fact violate the court’s order. Second, the court must find that the person had the ability to do what was ordered and just didn’t do it.
The person accused of violating the order has to show proof that he or she did not have the ability to do what was ordered or that it was not done intentionally, but was a mistake.
Consequences of Contempt
There are many different consequences of contempt. The judge can get very creative.
A person can be jailed, loose licenses, be stripped of visitation for a specified period of time, have other rights and privileges with the child taken away, be placed on probation, be fined, be ordered to pay the attorney’s fees for the other party. These are just a few of the possible consequences. But, judge’s can come up with some of their own that fit the specific set of facts and people involved.
Filing a contempt motion is a very powerful tool that can be used to make people do what the judge ordered.