The Basics Of Child Support In Pennsylvania
The process of court-ordered child support can be a contentious and stressful. Generally speaking, a divorced parent has the obligation to support their children until they are 18, providing monthly financial payments to the custodial parent if necessary. The obligations can go longer, particularly if they need to pay for undergraduate or vocational school.
At Mastri Law LLC, we help parents accurately determine how much child support a parent should pay. Our experienced staff can help ensure there is full disclosure on the part of both spouses. We can also represent you in discretionary areas such as school tuition, medical expenses, enriching activities, and other special costs.
Considerations When Determining Child Support
Pennsylvania adheres to a straightforward equation of determining child support based on the number of children and the joint income of the parents. But there are factors the courts will consider in determining the amount. Commonly areas of investigation include:
- Unusual needs or fixed obligations of the child
- Income and other expenses of the parent
- Medical expenses insurance doesn’t cover
- Standard of living
- Best interests of the children
The State Enforces Payment Obligations
As mandated by the federal government’s Child Support Enforcement Amendments of 1984, states must enforce child support orders. If the paying parent is not in compliance, the state may do one or more of the following:
- Require employers to withhold child support payments from paychecks.
- Impose property liens against parents who are delinquent in their payments.
- Deduct unpaid support obligations from federal and state tax refunds.
Parents in northeastern Pennsylvania who struggle to make payments can hire Mastri Law LLC to help request a modification of the existing child support order. When financial circumstances change for the better, child support payments can be modified to reflect this, too. It is also worth noting that a caregiver in Pennsylvania can request payment from a parent even if they do not have official custody of the children.