Monday, August 4, 2014

More to being in Contempt than not Paying

There is more to being in civil contempt than simply not paying your support obligations (child support or alimony).

First, the Court must find that there is a valid order for support that has been unpaid. This is usually the easy part of the analysis. However, the analysis does not stop there.

The Court must also find that (1) the person paying has the present ability to pay, and (2) that person has willfully refused to pay.

Most of the argument lies in the definition of "present ability to pay." I've heard judges say many times that after the IRS gets it's part of your gross pay, the next part goes for child support. It is not a defense to a Motion for Contempt that you don't have any money left over to pay child support after your bills have been paid (rent/mortgage, car, insurance, food, gas,...).

If you have questions about contempt, please call a Jacksonville Divorce Lawyer

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