Written by divorceattorney  |  31. July 2003

Whether it's temporary or permanent, whether it comes from Supreme Court or the Family Court, sooner or later couples on the outs are going to be subject to court orders. However, not everybody follows these orders all the time, and that's where contempt proceedings come in. In a contempt proceeding, the disobedient party can be found in contempt of court, and fined, assessed legal fees, or given an all expense paid vacation in the County Correctional Center. In either case, not something to be devoutly wished. Think your disobedience has to be intentional to be found in contempt? Think again. In one case, a man who was ordered not to contact his wife, sends her a support check by mail. Here he is paying what he's supposed to, but Nooooooooooo..... court says contempt! Shouldn't have sent the check by mail. In another case, court tells daddy to get a half million of life insurance and make the ex the irrevocable trustee of the policy. He makes a mistake, gets $576,000.00 of life insurance and makes the ex the beneficiary--giving her much more money and more rights than she would have had under the order. Court, without a hearing holds him in contempt, and slaps him with $5,000 in costs! [Case is now being appealed]. Ridiculous? Nonsensical? You betcha, but that's our wonderful legal system folks. Point being, when the court orders you to do something, by a certain date--just do it. Don't vary from it, don't try to improve upon it. Otherwise, you'll be risking the displeasure of the court, and that can mean thousands of dollars, or a rather uncomfortable bed, in a rather dismal atmosphere. Are you having trouble complying with a court order? Is your opposite number not complying with a court order? Need answers? Call my office at 516 624-0240 today. For a look at the laws of New York, Official Court Forms, and much more that can help you in the legal jungle, go to my website at http://justiceneversleeps.net

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