What to do if you are owed child support or alimony but cannot locate the payor parent or spouse?

It happens far too often that one parent or spouse may be owed child support or alimony from a parent or former spouse, but the person with the obligation to pay has vanished and purposefully cannot be found.  If you have made reasonable efforts to find the payor and are still unable to locate them, you should not “sit on your right”, but rather file a Complaint for Contempt as soon as possible in the Probate and Family Court of appropriate jurisdiction.

It is important to take all proper procedural steps necessary and file a Complaint for Contempt against a person who has not paid child support or alimony.  If the defendant does not respond to the Complaint after alternate service, a default judgment could enter against them.  An unpaid Judgment carries significant weight and will help you in collecting money from the defendant down the road.  You may even have priority in collecting from a defendant’s estate if they died with an unpaid judgment.

Once the Complaint for Contempt is filed, the Court has procedures in place if you cannot locate a defendant.  These procedures require specific Motions, Affidavits and notices of publication which must be adhered to or you run the risk of a judge dismissing your Complaint for Contempt.  The attorneys at Foley and MacAdie have the knowledge and expertise to walk you through all the necessary steps it takes to file and have a judgment enter on a Complaint for Contempt against someone who has disappeared from the jurisdiction.

If you need assistance with an absentee payor, or any other issue of family law, the attorneys at Foley and MacAdie, P.C. are happy to help you.  We look forward to hearing from you.

The information provided by Foley and MacAdie, P.C. is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.