What canI do if my ex-spouse is not paying spousal support?

UPDATED: Oct 6, 2010

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What canI do if my ex-spouse is not paying spousal support?

I was divorced on 01/009and my ex-husband was ordered to pay spousal support. However he has only been paying me half of what he owes for over a year. Judgement was for $893. I can’t even afford to take him back to court, so what can I do ?

Asked on October 6, 2010 under Family Law, California


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

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

You can file an application with the court for an earnings assignment order.  An earnings assignment order means that the spousal support will be taken directly from your ex-husband's paycheck through his employer.  Your application for the earnings assignment order is signed under penalty of perjury that your ex-husband is in default on support payments. 

If the spousal support order in your case did not include a provision for an earnings assignment order, your application must state that you have given your ex-husband written notice of your intent to seek an assignment order if there is a default in support payments and that the notice was transmitted by first class mail, postage pre-paid, or personally served at least 15 days before the date of the filing of the application.  The written notice of the intent to seek an assignment order may be given at any time.  Your ex-husband can waive the written notice requirement.

Upon receipt of your application, the court issues without notice to your ex-husband an assignment order requiring your ex-husband's employer to pay to you that portion of your ex-husband's earnings due or to become due in the future to cover the amount ordered by the court for support and an amount ordered by the court for past due support.

You can afford to go back to court by filing a form that allows you to waive all court filing fees.

Check with the court clerk to obtain the appropriate court form for your application for the earnings assignment order.

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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