An enforcement action is a lawsuit brought to force someone to obey a court order. In family law, the typical enforcement actions concern child support and custody and/or visitation. If a person is violating a court order, those orders will usually be enforced through contempt. If a person is found in contempt of the courts order, the court can punish the person by sending them to jail, imposing a fine, or both. In order for a court to enforce orders, those orders must have clear and specific instructions so that each party will know exactly what they have been ordered to do or not do. If a court order is not clear and specific, the court can clarify the order and then give the party an opportunity to obey the order. There are defenses to enforcement actions in both custody/visitation cases, as well as child support cases.
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