If your divorce case was resolved by the entry of an agreement, and not by a trial before a Judge, there may come a time that your former spouse does not comply with the terms and conditions of the agreement. If this occurs, you may need to move to enforce or compel this or her compliance with the terms and conditions of the agreement. When the non compliance is as a result of nonpayment of child support or alimony, you may be entitled to pursue contempt proceedings and incarceration, among other things, against him or her if there is an ability to pay and there is a willful and intentional violation of the obligation(s) by your former spouse. Your agreement should be examined to see whether it provides you with reimbursement of your attorney fees in the event that there is noncompliance.
It is important to have an experienced family law attorney advise you as to your remedies in the event that your former spouse decides to ignore the agreement. It is even more important to have an experienced family law lawyer advise you prior to entering into the agreement as to your remedies in the event of future non compliance.
Your agreement is a contract and unfortunately a former spouse may just “breach” that contract. Non support matters, such as non payment of a loan or a credit card, can result in the Judge only being able to award you with a money judgment and not contempt remedies. And it may be possible that obligation to you could be dischargeable in bankruptcy.