We are delighted to announce that our physical office is re-opening to our existing and new clients. To provide safety to both our clients and staff, we are adapting the CDC guidelines for social distancing while we are in the yellow phase. Rest assured, that we have and will continue to regularly clean all areas of the office especially the high-traffic areas. All attorneys and staff will have their temperature taken daily and will be wearing masks when interacting with clients. Any attorneys and staff with a temperature of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher will work remotely. They will then be required to follow CDCrecommended steps, including not returning to work until the CDC criteria to discontinue home isolation are met.

As the health and safety of our clients and their families is our top priority, we are asking that our clients follow the procedures below during the yellow phase:

  1. Upon entering the building, we ask that all persons wash their hands or hand-sanitize. We will be providing access to soap, hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes.
  2. We will also be taking temperatures with non-contact thermometers upon entering the office.
  3. Our office is set-up to comply with social distancing of six feet. In the conference and mediation rooms we are asking that each person sit a minimum of one chair apart from attorneys and/or staff at all times.
  4. Masks are available and will be provided open request.
  5. Teleconferences Zoom meetings, and FaceTime are available in lieu of inperson meetings if requested.
  6. We will continue to have the drop-box available for delivery of documents.

In the event that anyone is sick or have been exposed to COVID-19, we ask that you reschedule your appointment or utilize the electronic forums listed above.

As each county determines the procedures that will be followed, please ask your attorney of the specific procedures regarding the county in which your case in pending.

Please note that we will also continue to accommodate the needs of new clients, who are welcome, and as always we encourage and appreciate referrals. During this uncertain and unprecedented time, please stay safe and remember that Sweeney Law Office, LLC will remain by your side for all of your family’s legal needs. We ask that you have patience during this challenging time.

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Court-mandated child support and school expenses

When Pennsylvania residents think about what child support covers, they tend to think of anything a child may require while he or she is still a minor. However, court-ordered child support is set to only assist in paying for the necessities of the child — in other words, food, clothing, shelter and medical expenses. With school starting all over the country, some may be surprised to learn that school-related costs do not fall under the necessities umbrella.

With the advances in technology these days, paper, pencils and erasers are just the beginning of the school supplies a child needs. A recent report claims that parents can expect to pay approximately $600 per child for supplies and other school-related expenses. If one or both parents cannot or will not help cover the costs, the child could be left behind in his or her educational and supplementary pursuits.

In addition, there are the extracurricular activities of sports teams or clubs, where very few cost nothing to participate. Many former spouses who are able to be active in the lives of their children will at least come together to discuss what, if any, of these expenses they can handle. Sometimes they choose to split the cost down the middle, or they may use a ratio comparable to the one used for medical bills.

As in all child support and custody issues, what is best for the child is the approach former spouses should take. Using a child as a pawn in a financial battle only ends up hurting the child. Pennsylvania parents who are experiencing complications either paying or receiving child support will want to contact a professional who will be able to advise them of their rights and obligations.

Source: wtop.com, “How much should divorced, separated parents pay in back-to-school costs?“, Neal Augenstein, Aug. 29, 2017

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