Modification of Child Support
Raising children is a long, expensive process. In Pennsylvania, parents are obligated to pay child support for their children who are under 18, and even in some circumstances over the age of 18. As time goes on, it is likely that circumstances of either parent may change.
There may be a period of unemployment, a raise, a marriage, an increase in the child’s health needs, or various other factors that call for a modification of child support. No matter your circumstances prompting the need for modification, a qualified family lawyer can advocate the most favorable adjustment for you and your family.
Chester County Child Support Modification Attorney
This can be a complicated matter, especially if the two parents are in disagreement about what needs to be changed. If you are seeking or facing a child support modification in Chester County, Lancaster County, Montgomery County, and Delaware County, contact the experienced and compassionate legal team at Ciccarelli Law Offices.
We use a team approach to tackle any support modification or enforcement issue, whether you are the parent seeking the adjustment or the dissenting parent. Our team of qualified family lawyers work directly with you to determine and advocate for the solution you believe best for your family. To find out what Ciccarelli Law Offices can do for your case, call (610) 692-8700 today and schedule your free initial case consultation.
Pennsylvania Child Support Adjustment Process
Factors Involved in Determining Payment Amounts
The law establishing a parent’s financial liability through support for unemancipated children under 18, and the possible liability of support for children aged 18 or older, is defined in 23 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 4321. When the level of child support is initially being determined, it is dependent on a variety of factors, including income and the amount of other support given – such as health insurance.
The term “income” goes beyond wages and salary and includes other things defined by 23 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 4302, including, but not limited to:
- Bonuses and commissions
- Property gains
- Interest and royalties
- All forms of retirement income
- Inheritance of an estate or trust
- Disability and workers’ compensation
- Lottery winnings
- Income tax refunds
- Lawsuit settlements
A change in income is one of the most common causes for child support modification, whether certain income has been lost or the payer of child support has gained income. A Chester County family lawyer can assist you in determining an optimal adjustment for you and your family, as well as assist you with any matters related to enforcing the payment schedule.
Scenarios Where Child Support is Commonly Changed
When the reasonable needs of the child being supported or the payment ability of the parent making payments change for an extended period of time or permanently, a modification may be warranted. According to 231 Pa. Code Rule 1910.19, the process is started through a petition for modification of an existing Pennsylvania support order which states the material and substantial change or changes in circumstances causing the petitioner to seek modification.
After the petition for modification of child support in Chester County is filed, it may not be withdrawn unless the court gives leave or both parents consent to withdraw. After receiving the petition, a judge will review both it and any related evidence and make a support modification determination based on the existence of material and substantial change in circumstances, without regard to which parent originally filed the petition.
Some of the reasons included in the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure for which a motion for modification may be filed include:
- Change in income or assets
- Special needs of the child
- Death of a spouse or child
- Amendment to the Pennsylvania Support Guidelines
- Emancipation of a child
It is important to remember that a change in income or assets can be an increase or a decrease, so long as it is significant enough to affect child support payment. Whether you a seeking to change your child support amounts in West Chester, fighting one, or seeking to come to an amicable agreement with the other parent of your child, a dedicated member of our team can help find a solution that is suitable for you and your family.
Can an Attorney Help Adjust My Child Support Payments?
Our highly experienced legal team is proud to continue serving West Chester, Philadelphia, Plymouth Meeting, Radnor, Kennett Square, Malvern, Springfield, King of Prussia, and the surrounding areas. They will work as a team with you to determine the most practical and expedient solution for your family’s finances.
Call (610) 692-8700 or send an online message for a free consultation so we can act as soon as possible. We are based in West Chester PA and serve clients throughout Chester County, Lancaster County and suburban Philadelphia including West Chester, Kennett Square, Oxford, Avondale, Landenberg, West Grove, Paoli, Malvern, Downingtown, Coatesville, Exton, Parkesburg, Berwyn and Devon. We have convenient meeting locations in Lancaster, Philadelphia, Plymouth Meeting, Kennett Square, Malvern, Springfield, King of Prussia, and Radnor. Our family lawyers serve those with immediate legal needs in Chester County, Montgomery County, Delaware County and Lancaster County.