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Proving contempt: Getting the child support you deserve

You deserve the child support that a court awarded to you, and if that child support isn't being paid, you don't need to sit back and wait for it indefinitely. Having to wait for this support may not affect you financially, but that's no reason not to seek it out. The support is meant to help your child get the things he or she needs, whether or not that money is necessary in his or her daily life. It's up to you to make sure the child support money goes toward your child's needs.

When child support isn't paid, the parent who isn't paying is in contempt of court. What that means is that he is willfully violating a court order, which is against the law. Anyone who disregards a court order can be punished by the authorities. Some examples of contempt include failing to pay child or spousal support, refusing to return your child after visitation or failing to make an effort to let you see your child for reasonable amounts of time.

Contempt can be used to enforce temporary orders, and it has heavy penalties. If the violation is bad enough, it's possible that the person will be found in contempt and forced to comply.

If you have to prove contempt on the other person's part, then you'll want to consider ways to prove that the person knows about the court order and knows he or she is violating it purposefully. Our webpage has more information on the severity of being in contempt of court.

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