Posts Tagged ‘Modification and Enforcement of a Divorce Decree’

Modification and Enforcement of a Divorce Decree

Thursday, September 19th, 2013

Post-Judgment Modification and Enforcement

It’s not unusual, in the immediate aftermath of a divorce, of anywhere along the line, to discover that the terms you agreed to are no longer meeting your needs, or the needs of your minor children. You may have a new job, with new hours and new responsibilities, making it difficult to abide by the existing custody or visitation schedule. Health problems can have an impact on whether you can meet your obligations regarding care or nurture. Your children may develop special needs, related to health, education, or extra-curricular activities. Or you may encounter challenges getting your ex-spouse to comply with the court order.

Post-Decree Modifications

The terms of your divorce do not have to be set in stone. In most instances, you are best-suited to try to work out any changes in custody, visitation or support. You don’t need a court order to change the time you drop off your child, or to swap weekends. In fact, if you can work out new agreements without taking matters to court, it will be better for your children in the long run.

However, if your ex-spouse is unwilling to work with you, or demands his or her way all the time, you may have no recourse but to ask the court to enter an order changing custody, visitation or support. To do so, you must submit a written request to the court, with notice to your ex-spouse. The court will always give priority to what is in the best interests of your children. The court may issue temporary modification orders pending a hearing, if it determines that the modification is in the best interests of the child. At the hearing, both sides will be able to provide evidence regarding the best interests of the child.

There are situations where the court will entertain other evidence:

  • If the minor child is at least 12 years of age, the court will consider his or her wishes when making the determination
  • If the custodial parent relinquishes possession and care of the child for more than six months, or if there has been a material or substantial change in the circumstances of either parent or the child, the court can take that into account

Enforcement and Contempt Proceedings

If your ex refuses to comply with your divorce judgment, you can ask the court to enforce the order and to have your ex held in contempt of court, which could result in loss of driving privileges, professional licenses or other sanctions.

Contact Us

At the law office of Bailey & Galyen, we provide a free initial consultation to every client. To set up an appointment with an experienced Texas family law attorney, contact us by e-mail or call our offices at one of the convenient locations listed below. We will take your call 24 hours a day, seven days a week.