What to do about non-payment of court ordered alimony?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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What to do about non-payment of court ordered alimony?

My ex-husband was ordered to pay me $650 month by the 15th of each month. It was ordered to start almost 4 1/2 years ago. After years of not paying anything, he has paid maybe $450/ month for almost a year; it’s still $200 less than ordered by the judge. He makes well over $80,000/ year. He’s remarried, no minor children together or with any other partner. He now has sent a court

suit to terminate the alimony. I only work part-time and make about $225/

month. I added the amount owed so far and it’s almost $30,000 he owes me. I

went to my lawyer that I’d gone to when we divorced but I can’t afford her. Is there anyway I can get the court to at least get the back pay?

Asked on March 18, 2016 under Family Law, Alabama


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

You can have your ex-husband held in contempt of court for failure to pay the amount of alimony the court ordered.
You would file an Order to Show Cause (court form), and request a hearing date from the court clerk.  You should also file a declaration signed under penalty of perjury stating the facts in support of contempt of court against your ex-husband.  In addition, you should include any documents or canceled checks as evidence that he has failed to pay the required amount.
It would also be advisable to ask the court clerk for appropriate court forms you need to file for contempt of court as the required documents may vary from state to state.
You file your documents with the court with a proof of service attached and mail a copy of what you have filed to your ex-husband so that he has notice of the hearing.
Contempt of court may result in financial penalties and/ or incarceration.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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