What Can I Do if My Ex-Husband Violated a Court Order and Changed the Health Insurance on Our Child?

Full Question:

I have a supplemental judgment modification that states my ex husband is 80% and I am 20% responsible for all out of pocket medical expenses. I just received a notice from a collection agency regarding an $800 plus $150 interest medical bill from 2010 for our oldest son. The bill was in my husband's names as he is the one required to carry primary insurance on the children. Apparently he went into the account for this outstanding bill online and changed the responsible party information to list myself. I contacted the agency and told them what the judgment stated and they told me they didn't care, that if one parent doesn't pay the other parent is fully responsible. How can this be if I have a document signed by a judge stating differently? Please tell me this is not true only a scare tactic by the agency. The bill was my ex husbands insurance deductible amount-is that my out of pocket responsibility?
08/08/2011   |   Category: Debts and Credit   |   State: Oregon   |   #25300

Answer:

Generally, a hospital, because it is not a party to a divorce decree, does not consider itself bound by the terms of a divorce decree and will pursue collection according to the papers signed with the insurer and the hospital. If the husband violated the orders regarding insurance payments, then it will likely be a contempt matter for the court in the divorce case. If he is in violation of a court order, a motion for contempt may be filed.

When a court order isn't followed, a petition for contempt may be filed in the court that issued the order. A request may also be made to have the court to order the noncomplying party to pay for the losses caused by the failure to comply. The court retains continuing jurisdiction to enforce its orders by holding the noncomplying party in contempt of court.

If the former spouse fails to make required payments, it is possible you may file a motion for contempt, and then it will be a matter of subjective determination for the court, based on all the facts and documents involved. A party may also file a Judgment on Rule for Contempt, which is a prepared judgment ready for the judge to sign, to further the court's ease in making a determination. A certificate of service is filed along with the petition to prove that the petition was served on the opposing party.