How To Enforce An Alimony Order After A Florida Divorce
It is not uncommon for the dependent spouse to request alimony upon a Florida divorce. If the request for alimony is granted, the court will order the higher-earning spouse to make support payments to the other spouse while the divorce is pending and/or after the divorce is finalized.
But what if your former spouse refuses or fails to pay alimony after a divorce in Florida? Unfortunately, the situation is not uncommon. Fortunately, there are ways to make your ex-spouse pay despite their refusal or failure to do so.
Speak with an Orlando contempt and enforcement attorney to help you enforce an alimony order in your case.
Filing a Motion for Contempt to Enforce an Alimony Order
Filing a Motion for Contempt is the first option to enforce alimony in Florida. Once the motion is filed, the court will review your case to determine if the payer spouse’s non-payment is willful and intentional to hold them in contempt of court.
If the payer spouse is held in contempt, the court will determine the appropriate punishment, which may include fines or even jail time. However, if the payer spouse still refuses or fails to pay alimony after being held in contempt, there may be other methods available to enforce an alimony order.
Wage Garnishment to Enforce an Alimony Order
Wage garnishment is another option to collect unpaid alimony in Florida. Also known as income withholding, wage garnishment refers to a legal procedure in which a court orders the payer spouse’s earnings to be withheld for the payment of alimony.
In other words, when the court orders wage garnishment to enforce an alimony order, a percentage of the payer spouse’s pay will go directly to the recipient spouse. Income withholding can be used for different types of income, including:
- Social Security benefits
- Retirement benefits
- Tax returns
- Lottery winnings
What Are Other Options to Collect Unpaid Alimony?
When a Motion for Contempt and wage garnishment is not enough to make your former spouse pay overdue alimony, there may be other options available to enforce an alimony order and collect unpaid support payments.
Often, courts decide to place a lien on the payer spouse’s personal property. In other words, your former spouse who owes alimony will have to pay off a lien on a property before they can legally sell, refinance, or transfer a clear title of ownership to the home.
When the unpaid amount is too large, it may be appropriate to order the sale of the payer spouse’s property to use the proceeds to pay off outstanding alimony payments. In addition, the payer spouse may be ordered to pay the court costs and attorney fees incurred by the recipient spouse when enforcing the order.
Contact an Orlando Enforcement Attorney Today
If your former spouse owes alimony or child support, do not hesitate to contact a skilled attorney to help you enforce a court order and collect unpaid payments. At Greater Orlando Family Law, our Orlando enforcement attorneys can help. Schedule a case review by calling 407-377-6399.