I have been ordered to pay $15k for back child support, $23K attorney’s fees, and $1200.00 per month child support for my nine year old daughter. I have no problem with the $15K but I am a little miffed at the $23K. Do I have an option to appeal the $23K in attorney fees? Will I be held in contempt if I do not pay? What is the worst that could happen?
If you are ordered to pay attorney’s fees and you do not, you will be held in contempt when the other side makes a motion. This could result in sanctions and even jail time.
The trial court’s determination of an award of attorney’s fees is binding on the appellate courts in the absence of an abuse of discretion. This means that if the court made findings of fact that you refused to provide adequate support prior to the action (justified by the 15k back pay) and that the party seeking support had insufficient means to defray the cost of the suit.