Understanding the requirements of spousal support in Pennsylvania can leave you scratching your head. Many states use the words spousal support and alimony as if they were the same thing, but in Pennsylvania they are very different matters. In most places, alimony and spousal support refers to payments made to a spouse after the divorce is finalized. Pennsylvania law considers payments made during separation as spousal support, and alimony refers to payments rendered after the divorce is completed.
Family Court Ordered Financial Payments in Pennsylvania
Depending on the timing of your divorce, the state of Pennsylvania will issue one of three types of financial support if you qualify. The court can also order child support payments to cover the expenses of any minor children shared in the marriage.
There are three types of financial support in Pennsylvania:
- Spousal Support: Financial support made during the time between the separation and the finalized divorce.
- Alimony: Payments made after the divorce has been finalized.
- Alimony Pendente Lite: These payments are similar to spousal support payments in that they occur after separation, but they are also made after divorce proceedings have started.
- Child Support: Payments made to the custodial parent to provide minor children with the benefit of both parent’s income.
Pennsylvania law allows for modifications of alimony payments if a person’s financial situation has changed. COVID-19 has rendered many families with substantially changed financial situations, and this unprecedented matter has put countless child support and alimony payments in jeopardy. With so many families in the state impacted by this situation, we are left to wait to see how the court might respond to these issues. One thing is clear, in order to have the court address your alimony or child support payments during this time, you secure the help of a family lawyer who can familiarize themselves with the details of your case and make petitions on your behalf.
A Lawyer Ready to Help Navigate Your Legal Woes
Don’t wait for the situation to resolve itself. If you are unable to meet the obligations of your alimony or child support payments, legal representation can benefit your situation. At William Kirby, Family Law Attorney, we can explain your case and help you understand any COVID-19 changes to your alimony and child support payments.
Call us at (215) 515-9901 for help working through the details of your case.