How does child support affect my workers’ compensation?
In Pennsylvania, the law requires that the workers’ compensation insurance carrier to pay your support obligation from your weekly workers’ compensation benefits if there is an outstanding child support order against you. Moreover, any back due child support must be satisfied or, at very least arrangements made with the District Attorney’s office to reduce the obligation, before any lump sum settlement of your workers’ compensation case can be paid to you. It is best to let your attorney know as early as possible in your case whether you owe child support so that the amount of any back due child support doesn’t come as a surprise to you, especially when it comes time to settle. Our office has seen a number of settlements blow up because the back due support owed is more than the injured workers’ share of the settlement. If you believe the amount of support being taken from your weekly workers’ compensation check is wrong or, the amount of the back due support is incorrect, you need to hire a Family Law lawyer as soon as possible to try and correct these errors. Your workers’ compensation attorney will likely not be able to help you in your support case short of confirming what your support obligation is because most compensation lawyers don’t practice Family Law. Based on our experience, it is worth every dime you spend to hire a Family Law attorney to resolve support issues well in advance of a settlement of your compensation case. Don’t be fooled! The workers’ compensation judge cannot, and will not, ignore your support obligation in a settlement of your claim. The Judge is required by law to consider your support obligation before approving the settlement.