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Alimony, Child & Spousal Support

In marriage, incomes, living expenses, and childcare are shared between the spouses. A divorce creates the need for separation and reorganization of such matters. In many cases, the new living situation creates a hardship or undue financial burden for one party. If appropriate requirements are met, child or spousal support, or alimony may be awarded.

Spousal Support

Alimony pendente lite, and spousal support are similar orders, which may be enacted before the divorce proceeding is finalized.

  • Spousal support may be ordered before a divorce action has been filed in certain circumstances. However, in most cases the parties must already be separated.
  • Alimony pendente lite can be ordered after divorce action has been filed, before a decree of divorce is issued. It is a temporary order, the duration of which is determined by the court. The amount is usually set according to guidelines set forth by Pennsylvania law. However, the presiding judge may choose to deviate from these guidelines by considering various factors as outlined in the statute.

Alimony

Alimony is an arrangement for one party to support the other financially after divorce. It is ordered at the time of, or after, the decree of divorce. There is not a pre-determined formula for calculating the amount or duration of alimony payments. However, the court is required to consider many factors, which include each spouse’s income, earning ability, and contributions to the marriage. If either party’s circumstances change significantly, papers can be filed to request a modification of the order. Additionally, it will automatically end under certain circumstances, such as remarriage or death of the recipient.

Child Support

Legally, parents have an obligation to support their children financially, and they may be required to make payments to the child’s primary caregiver. In most cases, the non-custodial parent makes payments to the parent with primary custody. However, a non-parental caregiver can file for child support payments, even if that individual does not have legal custody of the child. The amount of support is normally determined in accordance with a formula established by the Pennsylvania Rules.

You are legally required to comply with the terms of a court order, unless proper steps are taken to amend it. Whether you are the financially responsible party, or the recipient of payments, the outcome could affect your and your child’s standard of living, in the immediate and long-term future. Choose an attorney who has the skills and passion to defend your rights, without unnecessarily subjecting you and your family to a lengthy and ugly legal battle. Jack A. Rounick will work to achieve a favorable outcome, as quickly and smoothly as possible. Call us at 484-684-6055 and schedule a legal consultation today