Failure to pay alimony in Georgia may lead to further legal actions in Georgia. This is because Georgia enforces alimony.
For example, if a spouse fails to pay alimony despite a court order, that spouse may be held in contempt of court in Georgia.
What happens if you fail to pay alimony in Georgia?
Failure to pay alimony in Georgia could be addressed via civil or criminal contempt of court. Contempt of court basically means that a spouse failed to pay alimony and that this failure to pay alimony was willful or intentional.
Further, if the court issues a judgment for the alimony arrears, you could go after the other spouse’s property or wages. This could be done through garnishment. Generally, garnishment is applicable to only arrears and not future payments.
Can you go to jail for failing to pay alimony in GA?
You could go to jail for failing to pay alimony in GA. If, after a hearing on the motion for contempt, the court finds that the paying spouse willfully failed to pay alimony in Georgia, the paying spouse would be held in contempt. Then, the court might order the paying spouse to be jailed until the paying spouse pays the alimony arrears.
The burden is on the former spouse who fails and refuses to pay alimony to show that he has in good faith exhausted all of the resources available to him and has made a diligent and bona fide effort to abide by the divorce decree awarding alimony.
For example, where the ex-husband showed that he was unable to earn income due to his health conditions and tried to sell his property to pay the alimony without success, the Supreme Court of Georgia reversed the trial court’s order finding the ex-husband in contempt for failure to pay alimony in Georgia. Brady v. Brady, 228 Ga. 793 (1972).
Can you quit your job to avoid paying alimony?
No, you cannot quit your job to avoid paying alimony.
Generally, evidence of a paying spouse’s willful unemployment or underemployment may be considered in a contempt motion against the paying spouse for failure to pay alimony.
That is, such evidence may be introduced to show that the paying spouse is willfully disobeying the court’s order on alimony payment.
Is failure to pay alimony in Georgia unintentional?
If you can’t pay alimony due to circumstances out of your control, you may want to chat with Atlanta Divorce Lawyer about your options. Depending on the facts of your case, you may be able to file for modification of alimony.
Consult with a divorce attorney Atlanta to enforce alimony or discuss your failure to pay alimony.