Mr. Leger (defendant) and Ms. Leger (plaintiff) were the divorced parents of at least one minor child. Mr. Leger, who was employed as a crane mechanic, filed a motion to terminate alimony and reduce his child-support obligation on December 2, 1998, because he had been injured in a car accident. Ms. Leger then filed a motion requesting that Mr. Leger be held in contempt for failure to pay alimony and child support. The Legers agreed that Mr. Leger owed $5,500 in past-due child support and alimony. Mr. Leger also admitted that he had not tried to discuss his inability to pay with Ms. Leger and that he simply did not pay. The Legers reached a stipulation outside of court that covered most issues, but the contempt issue was still before the trial court. The trial court held a hearing and found that Mr. Leger was in contempt for failure to pay child support and alimony. The trial court ordered that Mr. Leger serve 14 days in jail. Mr. Leger appealed the decision.