Appeal from Order dated February 3, 1988, in the Court of Common Pleas of Lycoming County, Civil No. 86-21, 727.
Richard H. Roesgen, Williamsport, for appellant.
James D. Casale, Williamsport, for appellee.
Wieand, Olszewski and Tamilia, JJ. Wieand, J., concurs in the result.
This is an appeal from a trial court order directing appellant to pay child support. Appellant raises two issues for our review: (1) whether the trial court erred in failing to dismiss appellee's complaint after a Florida court order disposed of appellee's claim for support pursuant to the Uniform Reciprocal Enforcement of Support Act (URESA); and (2) whether an adult child who is estranged from her parent should be denied support from that parent for college expenses. We affirm.
On December 18, 1986, appellee, on behalf of the parties' daughter, Jennifer, filed a complaint seeking support for tuition and other expenses incurred by Jennifer as a college student.*fn1 On March 6, 1987, appellant filed a preliminary objection, in the nature of a demurrer, claiming that the instant action was barred by a final judgment entered in the State of Florida. This final judgment provided for dismissal of a URESA support proceeding in Florida Circuit Court on the ground that Jennifer was emancipated, having
reached her 18th birthday and completed high school.*fn2 On June 19, 1987, appellant's preliminary objection was dismissed; and upon stipulation, the matter was submitted to a master without a hearing. The master filed his report, and ordered appellant to pay college expenses and arrearages. Exceptions were timely filed by appellant and, on January 13, 1988, a hearing de novo was held before the trial court. On February 3, 1988, the trial court issued an order directing appellant to pay $50 in support per week, retroactive to the date of the filing of the Pennsylvania complaint. The trial court further ordered that:
Beginning on the 10th day of February, 1988 and on or before the 10th day of each month thereafter, the defendant shall pay to Jennifer Conway the sum of $217.00 per month. The arrearage which has accumulated between the filing of the complaint on December 19, 1986 and today's date shall be liquidated through a lump sum.
Order at 2. This appeal followed.
Appellant maintains that the trial court erred in failing to dismiss appellee's complaint because a prior Florida order barred the instant action for support. Appellant asserts that the trial court was required, pursuant to the Full Faith and Credit Clause, Article IV, Section 1, of the United States Constitution,*fn3 to give effect to the judgment of the Florida Circuit Court. In accordance with the full faith and credit clause, an out-of-state judgment is to be given the same recognition and res judicata effect as it would receive in the state in which it is rendered. Morris Lapidus Associates v. ...