Appeal from the order of the Court of Common Pleas, Philadelphia County, Family Division, at No. 85-09080.
Lawrence E. Frankel, Philadelphia, for appellant.
Brosky, Beck and Cercone, JJ. Beck, J., files a concurring opinion.
[ 373 Pa. Super. Page 236]
This is an appeal from the Order entered by the trial court denying appellant's exceptions and entering an Order for Child Support in the amount of $184.00 bi-weekly plus $6.00 in arrearages for the support of one child.
Appellant presents the following questions for our review: (1) whether the trial court erred in rigidly following the Philadelphia County Child Support Guidelines; (2) whether the trial court erred by disregarding appellee's testimony, which demonstrated that the actual needs of the child were substantially less than what the Guidelines would allocate; (3) whether the trial court erred by considering appellee's child care expenses as additional needs of the child; (4) whether the trial court erred by failing to consider, as income to appellee, money she receives as support for her other children; and (5) whether the trial court erred by failing to consider appellant's expenses which are related to his child who lives with him.
For the reasons that follow, we respectfully vacate the decision of the trial court and remand for further proceedings.
Appellee-mother and appellant-father are the parents of a minor child, who was born on January 18, 1985. Appellee
[ 373 Pa. Super. Page 237]
filed an action for support against appellant. Appellee has two other children, from a previous relationship, living with her. She receives $200.00 per month for support of these two other children. Appellant also has two other children, one of whom resides with him. The other child resides with appellant's former wife, to whom appellant pays $25.00 per week plus $5.00 per week in arrears in support. Both parties to this action are employed.
At the hearing before the Master, appellee testified that she lives with her brother and sister, and that she contributed $100.00 per month for rent for herself and her children. Her testimony as to food expenditures was unclear, but she did testify to spending $20.00 per month on Pampers, and claimed occasional medical expenses without giving a definite sum. Appellee stated that she had a weekly child-care expense of $40.00.
The Master recommended, and the trial court affirmed, that appellant is to pay $184.00 bi-weekly in support, plus $6.00 bi-weekly in arrearages. In arriving at this amount, the Master relied upon the Philadelphia County Support Guidelines which set the basic monthly child support needs at $425.00 per month. The Master found appellee's net bi-weekly income to be $379.00. Deductions were permitted for state and local taxes, but not for federal taxes, since appellee receives a refund of all federal taxes paid. The amount appellee receives as support for her other children was not included as part of her income.
Appellant's net bi-weekly income was found to be $713.00, allowing for deductions for state and local taxes, health and life insurance, and other child support payments. No allowance was made, however, for the expenditures ...