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You are here: Home > Child Support Services > Enforcement > Motion to Show Cause

Motion to Show Cause

(Contempt Action For Non-Payment)

A Motion to Show Cause is a contempt charge filed in court when the Obligor fails to pay his/her monthly obligation for child support.

Basic Requirements:
Obligor must be at least 30 days in Default (must owe at least one month’s obligation) AND CJFS-OCSS is unable to locate any valid employment or attachable income source for the Obligor.

  • Obligor is in default and/or not making payments
  • Support Officer begins enforcement process by attempting to locate employment and sending Obligor a warning letter.
  • Address verification is obtained from the United States Postal Service which is a requirement for the Motion process to be completed.
  • Amount due on Support Order is calculated.
  • Motion packet is completed and forwarded to Prosecutor for filing in court.
  • Parties of the case are notified via certified mail of hearing date, time and location by the Court.

The process is relatively the same in both Domestic and Juvenile Courts. The time frame varies depending on the availability of the court dockets. Party requesting enforcement must attend Motion Hearing or risk the action being dismissed.

What happens after the Motion to Show Cause Hearing:
If the Obligor was found in contempt during the Motion to Show Cause hearing, the case is generally monitored by the court to see if the Obligor has fulfilled the purge requirements. The Obligor must be in compliance at the time the case is reviewed by the court. If the Obligor is still not in compliance, an arrest warrant may be issued for the Obligor. Once the warrant is issued, you may contact the Sheriff’s Department for pick-up if you know the whereabouts of the Obligor.

Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department
Civil Warrants Division

**Please be advised that although the Obligor may file bankruptcy, this does not excuse his/ her child support obligation including arrears, and enforcement can begin once the bankruptcy action has been discharged through the court.