Alimony, also called “maintenance” in Kentucky, is money paid by one spouse (the “paying spouse”) to the other spouse (the “supported spouse”) as part of a divorce order. In Kentucky, the purpose of alimony is to prevent inequalities and help both spouses live at or near the same standard of living after the divorce. If your ex was ordered to pay spousal support and is refusing to comply, it is probably putting a huge strain on your finances. You do have the option to enforce the order but act quickly and speak to your former spouse first. Find out if there is a reason. If they have a valid reason, the court may reduce or temporarily pause the payment. If this is not the reason or you are not on speaking terms with your ex, you should seek legal representation.
Ways To Compel Compliance With A Court Order
The court may find a non-compliant party in contempt of court for not paying the alimony. This can result in fines and jail time if the non-compliance continues.
The following are a few other court proceedings that can help retrieve the money owed to you by your ex…
A Writ of Execution
A writ of execution is a process issued by the court directing the U.S. Marshal to enforce and satisfy a judgment for payment of money. If the judge orders a writ of exaction, an enforcing officer will be able to seize your ex’s property to pay off missed spousal support payments. You may receive portions of the ex’s bank account, property, or other assets the court deems appropriate.
Income withholding is a court order that requires the employer of the spouse not paying alimony to withhold a portion of their income and send it directly to the other spouse for alimony. This method allows the spouse in need to get the money directly, without having to deal with the spouse who is refusing to pay. You will not have to deal with your former spouse.
Contempt of Court
If your spouse has refused or failed to pay your alimony, a judge may find your spouse in contempt of the court. This approach usually means the judge will give an order for the spouse to pay the money owed to you and potentially add another fine for their refusal to pay. If your spouse continues to refuse to pay, the court can take additional actions, such as charging more fines or even jail time.
Spouses that are required to pay alimony should be held accountable for their failure to complete legal mandates and should be made to the pay the money they should have been paying in the first place. If your former spouse refuses to pay you, you may be struggling to make ends meet. Dealing with the non-compliant spouse can be a stressful experience, but an attorney can assist you and ensure you receive what you are owed.
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About Helmer Somers Law
We are committed to helping families resolve their differences and get back to their lives. We help individuals and families fight for custody of children. We protect your rights as you go through divorce proceedings. We offer the guidance and support that you will need when you are involved with the legal system. We help clients with cases involving…
- Divorce and legal separation
- Child custody and visitation
- Child support and spousal support (alimony)
- Property division
- Domestic violence
- Grandparent rights
- And other related issues