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Enforcement of Judgments Attorneys in Orlando, Florida

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Enforcement of Judgments Lawyer

When a judge signs an order, the decision is legally binding on both parties involved. Sometimes though, one of the parties disobeys the court’s orders or fails to follow the court’s intended plan. In these cases, Florida law gives the judge the power to enforce his or her legal ruling. Two of the methods that can be used to enforce a legal ruling are “contempt” and “enforcement.” Sometimes a party in a case fails to follow the judgment for payment of support.  That’s where Orlando family lawyer Richard Spence comes in handy; he helps people make sure they receive all payments owed.

Legal Procedure

  • When a Payment is Missed, File a Motion for Contempt

  • Show that the Payor Failed to Comply with the Court's Order

  • Burder Shifts to Payor, Must Prove "Unable to Comply"

  • If successful, the Payer Will Be Held in Contempt

  • Penalties Include: Paying Your Attorney's Fees, Fines & Jail Time

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Contempt & Enforcement

Contempt is a legal term that refers to a party’s refusal to obey a legal order or judgment.  Usually, it’s used when one party fails to follow the court’s ruling.  For example, refusing to pay child support or alimony.

Civil vs. Criminal Contempt

In Florida law, there are two types of contempt: civil and criminal. Civil contempt is generally used to compel or convince a party to obey the court’s order.  For example, if a court orders a person to pay $500 per month in child support and they fail to pay it, they could be subject to contempt proceedings.  In proceedings involving payment of support, the moving party must show that the payor failed to comply with the order.  The accused party can defend against the claim but must prove that they were “unable to comply.”  This involves an evidentiary showing that the person literally had no money available to make the payment.

Direct & Indirect Criminal Contempt

Criminal contempt proceedings are used to vindicate the authority of the court or to punish a person for violation of a court order.  There are two kinds of criminal contempt- direct contempt and indirect contempt. Direct refers to an act committed in the immediate presence of the court, like repeatedly referring to allegations or facts that were determined by a judge as not admissible or cursing at the judge.  Indirect contempt occurs outside of the court’s presence, for example, failing to follow a court order, outside of the judge’s presence.

If you have been awarded child custody and support or alimony payments but are not receiving them from the person who was ordered to pay them, you can ask the court to find that person in criminal or civil contempt of court.


In addition to actions for contempt, another possible remedy is enforcement.  When a judge signs an order, that is not necessarily the end of the story.  Sometimes, a judge will order one party to pay child support or alimony, but the party will not comply with that order.  Other times, a party will be ordered to hand over the certain property in compliance with an equitable distribution award, but will not comply.  The judge has continuing jurisdiction to enforce its orders and judgments by awarding money judgments, garnishing wages, suspending the party’s driver’s license or professional license, or placing a lien on the property.

Are You Owed Payments?

If your ex owes you child support, alimony, or attorney’s fees and refuses to comply with the court’s order then contact Orange County family law lawyer Richard Spence to take legal action.  If you have questions about the enforcement of judgments, contact the Spence Law Firm for a confidential consultation.