Checklist for your Support Office Conference (PA)
Whether coming to an initial consultation or preparing for your visit with your support officer bringing a few documents and information to your lawyer can help get a more accurate prediction of the outcome of your case.
Notice and FormsIf your conference is already scheduled your will have what everyone calls "papers from the Courthouse". These will be a notice telling you the time and place of the conference. Your attorney needs that. The paper work can also tell you if you are being sued or suing for child support, spousal support or both. You will also have an Income and Expense Statement. That needs to be completed before your conference. Your attorney can help you with it and determine which sections are relevant to you and which you do not need to spend time and effort on.
Pay Stubs and Tax ReturnsYour notice will tel you to bring your pay stubs and tax returns to your conference. Bring them to your attorney first. He or she can then determine if it is more advantageous to view your wages for the last six months or the last year to calculate your average wage. You can discuss other details with your attorney so that the most accurate picture of your income can be presented.
Information about the Adverse Party's IncomeTo get a good prediction of support payments your attorney also needs as much information about the other person's income. Sometimes that is on a joint tax return. Sometimes you just have to try to remember what income you saw when and if you were together. If they say something different at the conference you will be prepared to question them on it.
Health Insurance, Child Care and Mandatory DeductionsThe State allows certain deductions when calculating your income. If you are paying health insurance for the other party or for children who will be the subject of this order that can reduce the amount you pay or increase the amount you receive and vice versa. Find out what a single insured would cost versus the other people you are covering. Any mandatory deductions such as taxes and union dues can also decrease your calculated wage, so bring this information. Most of it is on your pay stub. Allowances can also be made for child care so know the cost of this. Finally your mortgage may be considered if it is too high in proportion to your income. Bring this information.