I will be receiving a large settlement from an accident. I pay child support. Do I need to report this money?

Yes. All Orders from Domestic Relations now require that the payor report in writing any material and substantial changes of income to the Office of Domestic Relations as well as to the payee. Any recovery from a personal injury settlement is income in Pennsylvania for support purposes. In the event you do not report to Domestic Relations, an Order can be made retroactive to the date of receipt of the proceeds or in extreme cases, the Court can make a finding of Contempt.

There are ways to minimize the impact of your personal injury recovery on your support obligation. Before entering into any agreements to settle your personal injury matter, you should consult with a domestic relations attorney if you are paying support to consider the impact of the settlement on your support obligation.

Many firms employ attorneys working together to maximize the personal injury recovery you retain for yourself if you are paying support. Often the domestic relations attorney will represent you in your family law matters with the fee coming from your personal injury settlement. Since proceeds from an automobile, motorcycle or any other accident are now income for support purposes, it is very important your two attorneys work together to assure the maximum results.

Disclaimer: - These opinions represent a generalization based upon Pennsylvania law as of Nov. 1, 2014. You should consult an attorney and discuss your specific circumstances before taking any action.

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