My ex is responsible to pay 1/2 of our daughter's Catholic School tuition. I have had him back and forth to Family Court for arrears throughout the years and the Magistrate always finds in my favor because this is what was written in our divorce stipulation 15 years ago. Once my daughter started high school, he has not paid for 10th or 11th grade and out of nowhere I find myself being held in contempt of court with him stating "I have hindered his relationship with his daughter"! This was thought up by his fiance at the time. My attorney states he was forum/judge shopping. The papers read that he wanted to stop tuition payments while this matter was pending and to terminate his obligation to pay 50% of tuition fees. I hired an attorney, my daughter had to get involved and I had to pay half of her attorney. After all was said and done, it showed that I NEVER hindered his relationship, he did that himself. He chose to date other women rather than spend time with his daughter. His own family admitted that he never made the time through the years for his daughter. In November of 2010, we sat at a four way meeting at my attorney's office and it was agreed that he did in fact owe me the $8000.00 for tuition. On December 10, 2010 a stipulation was signed by both myself and my ex. That's as far as it goes. I've tried contacting my attorney inquiring as to why the stipulation was finally signed by the County Clerk on February 27, 2012 almost 2 years after the stipulation was written. My attorney finally got back in touch with me stating some papers were "lost" and they were never sent out to either attorney. I finally threatened her with putting in a grievance with the bar association and she emails me stating, "Opposing counsel never had him sign the Confession of Judgement and he stopped paying his attorney and refuses to get in touch with her to sign any papers" My attorney says to bring him back to court for contempt which I do NOT want to do. I will not spend another cent on attorney fees (this has already cost me $10,000 including my daughter's counsel). She said that I could again go after my attorney fees, but he has made himself "judgement proof" by hiding his income so I would not be able to to prove he makes anything. He works for Local3 and goes on furlough many times throughout the year and claims unemployment. His prior arrears are paid through unemployment and garnished from his check weekly when he does work. I want to know if any of this sounds legal to you. I paid my attorney up front and she seems to have done nothing from me. I want my $8,000 thats owed to me. I would like to bring this matter back to family court but I don't think I can while this matter is pending in Supreme Court. Any advice?
State/Country relating to question: New York
Talking with my attorney who never gets in touch with me. This has been going on for almost 2 years.
Hi! I will be the professional that will be helping you today. I look forward to providing you with information to help solve your problem.
I certainly understand your situation. Based upon what you stated above, it does appear that what your attorney is telling you, is true. However, I agree with you that it should have not taken 2 years for the stipulation to be signed by both parties and entered into by the court and that had your attorney stayed on top of this, it would have been done prior to your ex terminating his contact/representation, with his lawyer. You would need to take him back to court to hold him in contempt and can do this yourself, if you did not want to incur any more attorney fees. If held in contempt and based upon what you stated above, it is likely that he would be jailed by the Judge. That may be the wake up call he needs to start paying. As far as the issue with your attorney, if she has not done anything nor can document billing, you should get some, if not all your money returned. You can ask for an accounting of the $8,000 and see if she can justify the amount.
How can I take him back to court myself if I have an attorney representing me? Do I release her? How do I bring this to court myself?
You would first need to discharge the attorney from representing you, so if you contacted her and told her to withdraw, I'm sure she would not have a problem doing so. She may require you to sign something saying you agree and she will file it with the court and ask the Judge to take her off the case. You would then need to file a motion to hold him in contempt of court and state the history of the case and basis for which you want the court to do so. The clerk of court in the family division may have forms for you use, so you can contact them to see. Thank you for allowing me to answer your question. If you have nothing further, please click the accept button,so I can get credit for my answer.
General Family Law. Divorce. Child Custody. Child Support.
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