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Father faces jury in child support case

Many Pennsylvania custodial parents recognize how detrimental it could be to not receive even one court-ordered child support check. Some of them have had to deal with an ex who rarely pays the full amount, if at all. A verdict has recently been rendered in the case of a father who was accused of not paying child support over a number of years.

The indictments against the 52-year-old father were for failing to make any payments for over seven years. He was charged with two felony and one misdemeanor counts of non-support. The jury returned with a not-guilty verdict on all counts.

His attorney indicated during the trial that his client did pay when and what he was able to, which was about a third of what he owed for both children. He feels the jury took that into consideration as they were deliberating. While he had a similar prior court incident nearly 10 years ago, and entered a plea of guilty for not paying the support he owed at that time, the judge in the father's latest trial would not allow the prosecution to reveal this information to the jury.

For a non-custodial parent who does not pay the child support he or she owes, there are a number of consequences. Property liens, seized bank accounts, license suspension and negative impacts on the credit score are just a few of the battles that may have to be faced when a court order is disregarded. There is also, more importantly, the adverse effect on the child, when he or she may not receive food, clothing or required medical care because a parent will not pay. Pennsylvania custodial parents who are having trouble getting an ex to pay financial support should consult an attorney who will inform them about the legal rights to which they are entitled.

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