The Pennsylvania Child Support Program is a website that allows parties to file support claims, obtain important information, make payments, and receive updates regarding their case. The website also has a tool for estimating what a child support obligation will be. Child support in Pennsylvania is based on statewide guidelines established by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. The guidelines are based on an "Income Shares Model." Accordingly, the guideline amount will be based on the combined net monthly income of both parties and the number of children involved. The amount of support reflected in the guidelines is based on the average expenditures of children for food, housing, transportation and other necessary miscellaneous items.
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Similar to child support, spousal support and alimony pendente lite will be calculated based on a statewide guideline. Without children, spousal support is 40% of the difference of the net incomes of the parties. If there is also a child support order, spousal support will only be 30% of the difference of the net incomes. A party may petition for APL at the same time as the divorce complaint or any time thereafter prior to the entry of a final decree. The purpose of APL is to ensure each party has the ability to sustain themselves during the divorce. Spousal support can be filed prior to the entry of a divorce decree but can be fought where the spouse seeking support has engaged in conduct that would constitute grounds for a fault-based divorce.