Child Support

Men who pay child support in Pennsylvania to mothers who were never their wives may wonder whether the children they support are their own. These days, it is easy to administer a home paternity test and quickly learn whether there is a blood relation between the child and the man who is paying support. Yet, it’s […]

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Child Support Taken from Retained Earnings of Business

July 23, 2014 Child Support

When a business owner in Pennsylvania owes child support, he or she may consider whether to include the retained earnings that are not distributed to owners in calculating child support.  A recent decision of the Superior Court (non-precedential) answers this question by making reference to a previous child support decision.  In M.J. v. S.J., No. 747 […]

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Parent’s Obligation to Pay for College Does Not Justify Child Support Adjustment

July 16, 2014 Child Support

Parents who are paying for their children’s college tuition in Pennsylvania may wonder if they are entitled to an adjustment of the support obligation for their minor children who have not yet entered college.  The Superior Court recently addressed that issue in an unpublished decision, M.J. v. S.J., No. 747 WDA 2013 (July 16, 2014).  The […]

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Documents Not Required to Prove Income Reduction in Child Support Case

January 12, 2014 Child Support

In Crouse v. Crouse, No. 639 MDA 2013 (unpublished, January 7, 2014), the mother and father settled their child and spousal support case when they first separated in 2008. At that time, Father was a principal of a corporation in the construction industry. Eleven months later, the support obligation was reduced when one of the children […]

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How College Savings and Custodial Accounts Are Treated in Divorce

October 15, 2013 Child Support

As a family lawyer, I have seen more and more families saving for their children’s futures in recent years. That’s a good sign. But when parents get divorced, what happens to the college savings can be unpredictable.  There are at least four different vehicles for college savings: (a) Uniform Transfers to Minors Act (“UTMA”) custodial […]

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No Blood Testing Allowed in Paternity Case

October 1, 2013 Child Support

A recent decision of the Superior Court examined the “best interests” standard in paternity cases. R.K.J. v. S.P.K., 2013 Pa.Super. 259 (September 26, 2013).  R.K.J. (“Mother”) gave birth to a child, and her boyfriend S.P.K. (“Father”) signed an acknowledgment of paternity in the hospital, even though he knew that he was not the biological father. […]

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Business Owner’s Bad Bookkeeping Criticized in Child Support Action

July 27, 2013 Child Support

The Superior Court articulated its intolerance for a business owner’s shady bookkeeping practices in M.K.K. v. T.C.J., No. 129 WDA 2012 (July 25, 2013), a child support action arising from Washington County. The father in this case, who owned and operated a vacuum cleaner sales and repair shop as a Schedule C business for over thirty […]

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Flipping Loss Not Deductible from Income in Child Support Action

May 31, 2013 Child Support

The Superior Court in K.J.P. v. R.A.P., 68 A.3d 974 (Pa.Super. 2013) examined losses emanating from a parent’s investment activity apart from his primary employment. In addition to his regular employment as a marketing and product development consultant, Father was engaged in the purchase, renovation and sale of residential properties, owning as many as 20 […]

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Gifts Still Not Income in Child Support Proceedings

May 20, 2013 Child Support

In Suzanne D. v. Stephen W., 2013 Pa.Super. 93 (April 22, 2013), the Superior Court contemplated how to characterize $350,000 in money transfers that father received from his father, in the context of a post-divorce child support proceeding. Father testified that the transfers were loans, evidenced by a promissory note, which would be deducted from […]

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Why is Child Support Based on Income, without Considering Expenses?

May 17, 2013 Child Support

As a child support lawyer, I am frequently asked why the Pennsylvania child support guidelines don’t consider a parent’s expenses. Sometimes paying child support makes a parent “see red.”  Parents may experience personal budget deficits when they have to add child support to the list of bills they pay each month. And the court doesn’t […]

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