Can I get a public defender for contempt of court for child support? Can I be granted permission to attend by phone?

Asked about 1 year ago - San Marcos, TX

I filed for a downward modification of child support because I lost my job and couldn't afford the previous amount. The court granted my request and lowered the child support amount. I have paid the full amount of the new order on time every month and have even applied extra to catch up the amount in rears. My ex-wife, filed a motion to hold me in contempt for the amount in rears. I can not afford to hire an attorney and I live out-of-state. I just received a certified letter informing that my case is to be heard in 7 days. I do not have the funds to hire counsel nor do I have the funds to travel across the country to appear in court.

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Stephen Andrew Hamer

    Contributor Level 17

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You should have an attorney to look at the motion against you, and draft answer with defenses etc. I do not know about attending by phone. You can call the court coordinator and explain your situation and ask if that is possible. If wife is trying to enforce support through criminal contempt (or you have chance of being incarcerated), you are entitled to court appointed attorney if court determines you are indigent. But you get appointed attorney etc. after you appear.

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  2. Jacqueline R. Kriebel

    Pro

    Contributor Level 14

    Answered . Since you are facing jail time if held in contempt, you can request and the court should appoint counsel to represent you. The attorney can also file a motion for you to testify telephonically.

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