The Probate and Family Court in Massachusetts has the authority to enforce temporary orders and judgments.
A party (Plaintiff or Defendant) who violates or disobeys a court order risks being held in contempt by the court. This includes failing to pay alimony or child support or refusal to comply with a parenting schedule ordered by the court.
There are two types of contempt, civil and criminal. The purpose of civil contempt is to act as a remedial step in enforcing compliance with a court order.
In the event one party is not following a court order, the other party can file a Complaint for Contempt. This process requires the initiating party to provide a valid court order, show the defendant has knowledge of the order, and provide evidence that the defendant is willfully disobeying the order.
A criminal contempt, on the other hand, is a tool to punish the defiant party. Someone found guilty of criminal contempt may face jail time.
Either party can file a complaint for contempt to address non-compliance with any order, including temporary orders and final judgments.
Whether you wish to file a Complaint for Contempt or have been served with notice of a hearing, our office can assist you in court. Contact us today to discuss your legal rights.