Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply for Child Support?


You may apply for child support at your county Domestic Relations Section of Family Court.




What if I don’t know where the absent parent (child’s father/mother) lives?


When you apply for child support you are required to give the courts all the information you have about the absent parent. In this case, give the last known address and workplace and any relatives information. Most courts have a PLS (Parent Locator Section). This team finds absent parents through a number of ways.




What happens if my child’s father denies paternity?


Generally, paternity must be established before an order for child support will be entered. Courts order genetic testing to determine the paternity if it has been denied.




Can the child support be taken directly from my child’s mother’s/father’s paycheck?


Yes. A wage attachment order is sent directly to an employer to help the courts collect child support. The child support is then forwarded to the custodial parent.




How do I receive child support if the absent parent is being paid ‘under the table’ or in cash?


If a wage attachment cannot be sent to an employer then the absent parent is given payment instructions and directed to mail the payments in directly to the courts and is forwarded to the custodial parent




My child’s needs have changed. How do I apply for an increase in child support?


You can file a petition to increase or modify the child support order. Please note that an absent parent can also file a petition to decrease a child support order. Please order our online form for a petition that you can use when requesting an increase or decrease in child support.




What can I do if the absent parent is not paying the court ordered child support payments?


More than likely the courts will notify both parties to appear for an enforcement conference. If this does not happen, contact the courts to tell them that you are not receiving payments. Please order our online form for the enforcement letter you can send to you local domestic relations division.




What happens if the absent parent (child’s mother/father) moves to another state?


He/she can run, but they can’t hide from child support. Every county has an Interstate section to help with child support orders of defendants who have moved to another jurisdiction.




Can I enter into a non court ordered agreement for child support?


Yes, however, you must close the court order or the arrears will continue under the court order. Please order our online form for an agreement for child support that can be used out of court.




How do I know how much child support I am supposed to receive?


Each state uses a guidelines grid based on the income of both parents. Please use our Guideline Calculator to get a better idea of how much support should be paid in your specific case.





Lawson Law LLC
7500 Germantown Avenue
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19119

Phone Number 215-247-1018

Fax 215-247-1019

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