Support is the payment of money for the care, maintenance and living expenses of a child or a spouse. There is no requirement, nor any ability, for this Court to require an accounting from the person receiving the support to show where or how the support money is spent.
Under Pennsylvania law, parents are responsible for the financial support of their children until emancipation. Emancipation occurs when the child turns 18 years of age and graduates high school, whichever occurs last. There are certain exceptions to this rule which may apply when the child has turned 18 and has withdrawn or dropped out of high school or when a child has special needs. In certain cases, parents may be responsible for the support of their children beyond the age of 18 or emancipation.
Under Pennsylvania law, one spouse may be responsible for the support of the other spouse. Generally, when there is a large difference in the incomes between the husband and wife and they are separated from each other, spousal support may be ordered by the Court. Spousal support is also commonly referred to alimony pendente lite (A.P.L.). There are certain legal differences between spousal support and A.P.L. which may be discussed with an attorney.
The obligation to pay spousal support ends when a divorce decree is entered by the Court. If a party is required to pay support to a spouse after the divorce, that is known as alimony and may or may not be handled through this office.