A woman looking on her computer about how to file a motion to enforce a court order in Texas

Motion to Enforce Court Order in Texas: What You Need to Know

Navigating the aftermath of a family law matter can feel like being caught in an emotional battle. You’ve painstakingly walked through the process, agreed to the court orders, and breathed a sigh of relief as the final orders were created. Yet, if the other party does not cooperate, it can leave you grappling with thoughts of what you can do to fix the situation.

In these moments, when the agreements that were supposed to guide your new beginning are disregarded, you can take action. Texas family courts allow you to take formal action to enforce an existing court order

Find out what steps you need to take in the process and learn about a motion to enforce court order Texas residents need to know about.

When a Family Court Enforcement Order May be Necessary

Lawsuits related to the enforcement of an original order typically involve specific issues.

For example, your ex-spouse may not be following the terms of a divorce decree concerning property division (such as failing to deliver property). Or, your former spouse may have failed to comply in another area, such as spousal support, child custody, or child support.

If the other party fails to take certain actions or has neglected to file paperwork as it was ordered in a divorce decree (such as transferring the title for a property), this can lead to you filing a motion to enforce a court order.

Some common situations call for an enforcement order. They may include the following instances where the other spouse failed to…

  • Pay child support for the amount that was ordered in the decree.
  • Pay debts or expenses as it was ordered in the decree.
  • Transfer debt out of the other party’s name.
  • Return personal property to which the other party was awarded.
  • Transfer the retirement funds that they had been ordered to pay.
  • Sign off on the closing documents that are needed to execute the transfer of property.

Your situation may be in one of these categories or be related to a specific issue in your family law matter. Be sure to speak with one of our qualified attornies for more information about whether your situation qualifies.

How to Enforce a Divorce Decree in Texas

To enforce an original decree in Texas, you need strong legal support. That’s why we recommend contacting a family law attorney as soon as possible to discuss your case. One of our attorneys will perform a thorough analysis to see if the original order is enforceable, as specified in the Texas Family Code.

Sometimes, you may need to return to court to clarify certain parts of the original court order before you can file a motion to enforce a divorce decree. And, once you have received clarification, your attorney can proceed with helping you file a motion to enforce a court order.

In Texas family courts, enforcing an original order is serious business. These types of cases also come with very specific proceedings. Your attorney will need to be clear about the specific provisions that you’re trying to enforce and will need to provide evidence that the other party hasn’t complied with them.

If you try to pursue enforcement without proper legal representation, or if you do not present your case in a clear, detailed, and organized manner, the other party’s attorney could make objections that lead to an unfavorable result. And you may be disqualified from pursuing enforcement again.

When working with an experienced family law attorney at our firm, we will ensure that you have strong supporting evidence for your case and are prepared to state your position. Being prepared and equipped with strong arguments will increase your chances of enforcing the order.

Enforcing Specific Types of Family Law Matters

Each family law case is different, depending on the nature of the violation. Take a look at some of the key aspects of enforcing an original order in these situations:

Enforcing a Divorce Order in Texas

Enforcing the terms of an original divorce decree, such as asset division and spousal maintenance, requires a well-informed legal approach. The Texas Family Code outlines specific enforcement actions you can take, including garnishing wages for unpaid spousal maintenance and seizing assets.

The legal framework allows the court to ensure compliance with the divorce decree. We can help you file a motion for enforcement, leading to a court review and potentially a hearing to determine necessary enforcement actions.

This process is valuable for helping you pursue enforcement through the Texas family courts to safeguard your rights and financial interests post-divorce.

Enforcing a Child Custody Order in Texas

If your child’s co-parent refuses to comply with the terms of a custody order, there are some things you can do to rectify the situation. Primarily, you don’t want to counteract their non-compliance. You must continue to comply with the custody orders for your child, so the co-parent won’t have any grounds for taking counter-action against you.

You must also document situations where the co-parent hasn’t complied with the custody order. That way, you can support your argument for enforcement by presenting documented proof of non-compliance.

Depending on the severity of the infraction(s), the court may choose to modify the original custody arrangement, punish the parent who allegedly violated the court order, or impose other penalties that are deemed appropriate.

Enforcing a Child Support Order in Texas

If your child’s co-parent refuses to make child support payments or pay the amount of child support specified in the original court order, you can enforce it in several ways, including filing a motion for contempt.

First, you must file a petition with the court, ask the court to enforce the agreement, and drive toward holding the co-parent in contempt of court.

  • If the court determines that the co-parent is at fault, they could be found in contempt and will be ordered to pay the owed amount.
  • If the co-parent does not show up on the day of the hearing, the court may work with law enforcement to issue an order for their arrest.

Furthermore, if the co-parent continues to ignore their child support obligations, there are other means for receiving payment. You can ask the court to garnish the co-parent’s wages, which is administered through the Office of the Attorney General. If the court grants your petition, you can recover a certain portion of the co-parent’s income to help cover the financial support of your child.

Motion to Enforce Court Order Texas: Find Support in Your Case

Filing a motion to enforce a court order in Texas is a critical legal step to protect yourself in the aftermath of a family law matter. Fortunately, the law is on your side to help you counter the other party if they are dropping the ball on their obligations.

The journey might seem daunting to enforce an original order, but we can help make it a smooth process. Our helpful and knowledgeable family law attorneys are ready to support your post-divorce transition.

We currently support clients in Fort Bend County, Brazoria County, Galveston County, and Matagorda County. If you live in one of these counties, contact our offices ​​to discuss your Texas court orders and how to pursue enforcement.

You can call us at 979-267-7660 (Angleton office) or 281-944-5485 (Sugar Land office) to speak with a family law attorney. To get started on a motion to enforce court order Texas residents can use to their advantage, reach out to Parker & Aguilar today.