Appeals from order of Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County, Sept. T., 1966, No. 27, in case of Commonwealth ex rel. Lita Colligan v. Jerome D. Kass.
Jack A. Rounick, with him Moss, Rounick & Hurowitz, for relatrix.
Marvin Comisky, with him Alan C. Gershenson, and Blank, Rome, Klaus & Comisky, for defendant.
Wright, P. J., Watkins, Jacobs, Hoffman, Spaulding, Cercone, and Packel, JJ. Opinion by Watkins, J.
[ 225 Pa. Super. Page 300]
These are cross appeals from orders of the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County involving the support, maintenance and education of Marcia, Jamie and Jeffrey Kass, the children of Jerome D. Kass and Lita Kass Colligan. The mother appeals from the order affecting Marcia and Jamie; and the father appeals from the order affecting Jeffrey. Marcia was born on July 31, 1949, Jamie on July 31, 1951, and Jeffrey on July 12, 1953.
The real question involved in these appeals is the obligation of the husband under an agreement executed on July 28, 1961, at the time of a property settlement in contemplation of divorce, obligating himself to the support and education for the children which agreement was to continue until each child died, became emancipated, or self-supporting or attained the age of twenty-one (21) years. The pertinent provision, inter alia, reads as follows: "The obligation of the husband to pay for the support, maintenance and education of his children as aforesaid shall continue . . . under the terms of this agreement, shall terminate as to each child as and when such child attains the age of twenty-one (21) years." The agreement in question was not introduced into evidence, but is discussed and considered in counsels' briefs and in the court's opinion.
[ 225 Pa. Super. Page 301]
On April 19, 1967, the wife filed a petition seeking an order for the support of the three children. Without testimony, and by agreement of counsel in open court, an agreement was entered in the amount of $142.50 per week. On August 25, 1969, the wife filed a petition to increase the order on the ground of changed circumstances based on the increased needs of the children for college education. On November 20, 1969, the father filed a petition to modify and remit arrearages based on the fact that the children had reached age eighteen (18). All petitions were joined and a number of hearings held. On October 8, 1970, the court reduced the order temporarily to $100.00 per week for the support of Jeffrey and Jamie. This removed Marcia from the order. On April 7, 1971, another temporary order was entered directing the father to continue to pay $100.00 a week on account of Jeffrey and accrued arrearages. It deleted Jamie from the order. On July 21, 1971, a final order, the subject of these appeals, was entered. It reads as follows:
"And Now, July 21, 1971 it is hereby Ordered and Decreed that support under our existing Order dated April 7, 1971 shall continue until August 15, 1971 at which time it shall terminate and in lieu thereof defendant Jerome D. Kass is directed to make payments for the college education of his son Jeffrey Kass as follows: (a) initial payment of $3932.00 due August 15, 1971 for tuition, room and board and miscellaneous expenses; and (b) thereafter recurring expenses for the next three years of $3807.00 due on August 15 of each succeeding year. This Court is to retain jurisdiction over such expenses and in case of increase or decrease shall modify this Order upon Petition.
"It is further Ordered that the existing arrearage of record amounting to $8402.90 be credited as follows: (a) stipulated credit of $5102.14 for the support and
[ 225 Pa. Super. Page 302]
maintenance of Jamie and Marcia; and (b) 18 1/2 weeks (April 7, 1971 until August 15, 1971) of $50 per week payments towards arrearages based on our Order of April 7, 1971 which removed Jamie from all support (Marcia having been removed by Order dated October 8, 1970) totaling ...