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MCGAVIC v. MCGAVIC (09/15/72)

decided: September 15, 1972.

MCGAVIC, APPELLANT,
v.
MCGAVIC, APPELLANT



Appeals from order of Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County, June T., 1971, No. 160, in case of John S. McGavic v. Patricia McGavic.

COUNSEL

Desmond J. McTighe, with him Dean B. Stewart, Jr., and McTighe, Brown, Weiss, Bonner & Stewart, for appellant.

Thomas J. Burke, with him Haws & Burke, for appellee.

Wright, P. J., Watkins, Jacobs, Hoffman, Spaulding, Cercone, and Packel, JJ. Opinion by Hoffman, J. Jacobs, J., would affirm the order of the court below.

Author: Hoffman

[ 222 Pa. Super. Page 247]

These are cross appeals filed by a husband and wife from the order of the lower court awarding the wife $140.00 per week support. The husband contends that the lower court erred in determining that his wife was entitled to support, and the wife contends that order entered in her favor was inadequate. We agree with

[ 222 Pa. Super. Page 248]

    the lower court that the wife has met her burden of proof in showing that she is entitled to support. After reviewing all the evidence, however, we do not believe that the award of $140.00 per week was an adequate order.

Appellant-wife commenced this action under The Civil Procedural Support Act, the Act of July 13, 1953, P. L. 431, § 1, 62 P.S. 2043.31 et seq., and thereafter, two hearings were held before the Honorable Frederick B. Smillie. The evidence presented at these hearings indicated that the parties were married in April of 1965. Appellant-wife had been a widow for twelve years prior to this marriage and was living in England when she first met her second husband, who is an opthamologist. Following their marriage, the parties resided in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. In May, 1967, the parties moved to a combination house and office in Rosemont, Pennsylvania. This property was purchased in 1968 for $75,000, and valued by appellee in June, 1971, at $125,000. The husband also owned two farms in Chester County, which were purchased at a cost of $237,000 and valued by appellee in June, 1971, at $345,000.

The lower court found that the husband had a net yearly earning capacity of $67,000, and a net worth of $321,000. The lower court also determined that the appellant-wife had an independent income of $1,400 per year.

In making the award of $140.00 per week to the wife, the court gave considerable weight to the fact that the wife had been living in England prior to her marriage, and that the cost of living in England is substantially lower than in the United States. The lower court was also concerned with the fact that the marriage had lasted only six years, and that the parties married comparatively late in life. The hearing judge

[ 222 Pa. Super. Page 249]

    in his opinion stated that "[w]e do not believe the support laws contemplate that an order should regard the seizure of a comfortable accumulation of worldly goods through the media of marriage. Surely the winter of life can be made less severe with an adequate ...


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