What to do if my husband has violated our temporary orders?

Our orders state he is to leave my property alone but he used his motorcycle to damage the front of my car. Our orders state we are not allowed to have anyone of the opposite sex spend the night with us while our children are present. He has let his girlfriend and her daughter spend the night with him while our girls are there also. Can I take him to court? And if so, will a judge do anything about this?

Asked on July 6, 2012 under Family Law, Texas

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You can file a motion to enforce or a motion for contempt if he has violated any of the court's orders.  What the court will do about it is a completely different beast....... Some judges are very strict and have a backbone-- and therefore expect that their orders are to be enforced.  These judges can impose sanctions against your husband to enforce compliance.  Other judges are have a hard time enforcing court room decorum-- let alone one of their own orders.  These judges will often let parties off with "strong warnings" about next time.  If you have a divorce attorney, you need to visit with him/her about your judge's propensities.  Most local attorneys will know which judges mean business and which ones don't.  If you have a judge that's not going to do anything, your better off filing a criminal mischief charge for the damage that he did to your vehicle.  The police may try to tell you that it's community property, but if you were granted use of the car per the temporary orders or have always used this as your car, then you can file criminal charges for the damage.  You may have to do some prodding with the investigator or DA's office, but tell them case cite:  Tackett v. State,  No. 05-02-01338-CR,
2003 Tex. App. LEXIS 3760, (Tex. App. --Dallas 2003) supports the position that you can still press charges for criminal mischief while you are married.


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