Appeal, No. 179, Oct. T., 1963, from order of County Court of Philadelphia, Jan. T., 1962, No. 346, in case of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Gus Mexal. Order affirmed.
Colbert C. McClain, for appellant.
Anthony J. Caiazzo, Assistant District Attorney, with him Arlen Specter, Assistant District Attorney, F. Emmett Fitzpatrick, Jr., First Assistant District Attorney, and James C. Crumlish, Jr., District Attorney, for Commonwealth, appellee.
Before Rhodes, P.j., Ervin, Wright, Woodside, Watkins, Montgomery, and Flood, JJ.
[ 201 Pa. Super. Page 458]
This is an appeal from an order of the County Court of Philadelphia entered against the father for the support of his four children.
[ 201 Pa. Super. Page 459]
The parents of the children were married in Texas in 1946 and moved to Philadelphia in 1955. The children are ages 15, 14, 12 and 9. In 1962 the wife left the common domicile in Philadelphia and took the four children with her to New Mexico, where she instituted an action under the Uniform Reciprocal Enforcement of Support Law, a part of the statutory laws of both New Mexico and Pennsylvania, alleging cruelty by her husband and asking for an order of $50 per week for the support of herself and four children.
After a hearing at which a sworn statement of the plaintiff was admitted and testimony of the defendant heard, the County Court of Philadelphia dismissed the petition for an order of support for the wife but entered an order of$25 a week against the defendant for the support of his four children. In light of the defendant's net income of $84 per week, the amount of the order was reasonable and is not questioned by him.
The defendant's position is that no order should be made against him. He contends that he supported his wife and children while they were residing with him in Philadelphia, that his wife left the common domicile without his consent and without his giving her any legal cause for leaving, that she took with her the children whose custody he is now denied and that he is willing to support his children providing they are returned to his home in Philadelphia. For the purpose of this decision, we shall assume that all of these allegations of the appellant are true, although there is evidence of a strained relationship between the parents and an admission by the defendant that he struck his wife.
The first question is whether the Uniform Reciprocal Enforcement of Support Act is limited to those cases where the husband has left the state of the common ...