What Is Contempt?

Facing A Contempt Family Law Matter?

Contact Our St. Louis Family Law Attorney!

Actions involving contempt occur when a party that is obligated to a court order of judgment fails to abide by the requirements set forth within the agreement. This can include both actions and lack of actions from any of the parties involved in the order.

Some of the following may be considered contempt:

  • Failing to pay child support
  • Ignoring visitation restrictions
  • Bringing back children late all the time
  • Forgetting to pay spousal maintenance
  • Violating and order of protection in any way

If you need to hold an individual accountable to a court order or have been accused of being in contempt, you need to act fast to protect your rights and ensure a fair outcome. Reach out to our St. Charles County family law attorneys in Chesterfield today or fill out a free case evaluation.

The Test for Contempt

When seeking an order of contempt, the court will look to see whether or not an individual had the means and ability to abide by the terms of the judgment but still failed to do so.

The three prong test includes the following:

  1. There must be a judgment;
  2. The contemptuous party must be aware of the judgment; and
  3. The party willfully disobeyed the judgment terms.

Often these types of suits are followed with a request that the court determine the damages or unpaid amounts owed, which may include legal and attorney fees.

Custody, Support, & Property Issues

Examples of contemptuous behavior may include not abiding by visitation/custody terms set out in a parenting plan, failing to refinance a home, retaining an item that is to be sold in a property division agreement, or not cooperating with other terms contained in the judgment.

The family lawyers at Pedano, O’Shea, McGavic & Hogenmiller, LLC are experienced in pursuing and defending against contempt motions throughout Missouri. We can work vigorously to make sure that the judgment is followed and the outcome is fair and just.

If you would like to discuss your contempt case with our office, we invite you to call us today schedule a complimentary consultation.

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