Alimony and Spousal Support are related but different concepts under PA law.
Spousal support, like child support, is determined in accordance with the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure.
- For Spousal Support in PA, there is a guideline formula that determines the amount of support. This formula is primarily based upon the net earnings of each party. In some cases, the Courts will impute income to a party if it is determined that one party is not earning income up to his or her potential.
- Not all divorce cases will have a spousal support order.
- The incomes of the parties must fall within the guidelines before an order of spousal support can be issued. Generally, spousal support will start only once a spousal support complaint has been filed. Spousal support continues for the length of the marriage. Spousal support must terminate upon issuance of the Divorce Decree.
Like child support, spousal support is modifiable. As the incomes of the parties change, the support obligation can also be changed. In order to do so, a party must file a Petition to Modify Support.
At David K. Lucas & Associates, we're here to help you through the tough times. When you contact us today, or call us at 724-836-3300, we'll answer your questions about spousal support.
Alimony is different from spousal support in a number of ways. First, alimony cannot be awarded during the marriage. It can only be awarded after the divorce decree is issued. In addition, alimony is not determined by guidelines but is instead, determined in accordance with the Pennsylvania Divorce Code. There are 17 criteria that the Courts must consider in determining whether alimony should be awarded, the amount of alimony and the duration of alimony. These 17 different criteria can be found at 23.Pa.C.S.A. §3701 of the Divorce Code.
Generally, the longer the marriage and the greater the disparity of income between the parties, the greater the chance there is of alimony being awarded. Each case is very fact specific. If you have any questions concerning alimony, call our office at 724-836-3300 or visit our contact page.
Spousal Support and Divorce Attorneys at David K. Lucas & Associates represent individuals in Greensburg and throughout Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, including but not necessarily limited to Delmont, Jeannette, Latrobe, Ligonier, Mount Pleasant, Murrysville, New Kensington, Irwin, North Huntingdon, Penn, Scottdale, and Youngwood