Understanding Child And Spousal Support In Pittsburgh
When families separate, the new financial realities are often very difficult to face. The same amount of money is being earned by the couple, but now that money has to somehow support two separate households.
I am Susan J. Pearlstein, a child support attorney in Pittsburgh, and I am dedicated to finding cost-effective solutions to your legal problems.* I am a lawyer who will work with you directly to make sure you understand all your options and choose the best possible solutions to your child and spousal support issues.
Providing Answers To Real-Life Questions About Child Support In Pennsylvania
Many people have misconceptions about child support. I am here to help ease your fears, answer your questions and make sure that the support you are paying or receiving is fair. Some common child support questions include:
- Are fathers the only parents who have to pay child support?
No. Pennsylvania is an equal rights state. This means that both parents have an obligation to provide support for their children. Whichever parent has more than 50 percent custody will have the right to receive child support from the other parent.
- If I have to pay support, will I have any money left to pay my own expenses?
In most cases, if you are the parent paying child support you will have at least half of your income for your own expenses. In many cases you will be left with far more than that amount.
- Can I tell the custodial parent how to spend the child support?
While you may be frustrated with how your ex spends money, child support is generally not separated from other money in the house. If you have legitimate concerns about the custodial parent’s behavior, a motion to modify custody may be a better option.
- How do multiple child support orders affect how much support I will pay or receive?
There is no straightforward answer to this question. If more than one child support order is involved, you need an experienced attorney to help you navigate this issue.
Your Attorney For Help With Spousal Support
Similar to child support, spouses in Pennsylvania have a legal obligation to support each other. What is different about spousal support is that this “right” only applies while you are married; child support must be paid regardless of marital status.
There is a relationship between spousal support and child support payments, but it depends on custody and visitation rights and it can quickly become complicated. I can help you determine the spousal support payments in your case and how that will impact child support.
Contact Me For Help In Allegheny County
In Pennsylvania, alimony is the support paid to an ex-spouse. Alimony is different from child support and spousal support because ex-spouses do not have a legal right to ongoing payments. It is possible to have alimony included in a marital termination settlement or final divorce order, but alimony generally remains in place for a specific time period.
*I practice law primarily in the areas of domestic relations and consumer debt. My law office is designated as a debt relief agency that helps people file for relief under the Bankruptcy Code.