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Aurora Family Law and Divorce Lawyer

In any family law or divorce proceeding, parties' will usually have any and all disputes resolved by a Court Order. A Court Order specifies the obligations of each party and is entered by agreement or by ruling of the Court. Orders may also be entered as temporary or permanent, depending on the nature of the issue and the status of the particular case. Every court order requires strict compliance and remains in effect until further order of court.

Understanding Court Orders and Contempt of Court:

Court orders in family law and divorce related actions will usually involve:

  • Child Support Obligations
  • Child Visitation Time
  • Settlement Agreements
  • Alimony/Spousal Maintenance
  • Exclusive Possession of the Marital Home
  • Other Temporary and Permanent Relief

In the event either party violates a court order or fails to comply with its terms, the aggrieved party may seek the order's strict compliance through the court. The aggrieved party will seek to hold the non-compliant party in "Contempt of Court" for violation of a Court Order. If a party is found to be in violation of a Court Order, the non-compliant party can be incarcerated until the party "complies" with the Court Order. For example, a party that refuses to pay court ordered child support, may be held in contempt of court and be taken into custody until he/she pays the outstanding arrearage of court ordered child support. As you can see, the non-compliant party can "purge" his contempt by complying with the Court's order.

Petition for Rule to Show Cause

The mechanism in place to hold one in contempt of court for violating a court order, is the Petition for Rule to Show Cause. By filing this Petition and providing notice to the non-compliant party, you are asking the court to require the non-compliant party to "Show Cause" why he/she should not be held in contempt of court. The aggrieved party must establish a prima facie case that the non-compliant party willfully violated a Court Order.

If the Court determines that a prima facie case has been made, the burden of proof shifts from the aggrieved party to the alleged contemnor. Now the alleged contemnor has to provide proof that, more likely than not, they either did not violate the court order, or, if the order was violated, that said violation was not willful.

Contact an Aurora Divorce Attorney

Ideally, it would be in the best interest of all parties to follow all Court Orders, until further Order of Court. However, if you find that Court Orders are not being followed, you must petition the court for its compliance. Likewise, if you are being accused of violating a Court Order, you may have certain defenses that may allow you to avoid a finding of Contempt by the Court. If you have questions or need an experienced Divorce or Family Law Attorney, please contact my office for a free consultation. We will guide you through the process and will develop a strategy to solve your legal issues.

Contact an Aurora Divorce Lawyer for legal representation

in any Divorce or Family Law matter today.


The Law Offices of David Lee is available in Kane, Kendall, Dupage and Dekalb Counties

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