In Pennsylvania, child support is determined in most cases by the Pennsylvania Support Guidelines. The primary focus of the guidelines is the net incomes of both parties. This may sound easy, however, there are many different rules that can apply in order ensure that the calculations are made correctly. A child support hearing often leads to a hearing before a hearing officer who acts as a judge. This hearing is essentially a trial and involves the cross-examination of the other parent, the presentation of testimony and evidence, as well as legal argument. Child support can become very complex. It is important for an experienced attorney to oversee the child support determination and to deal with situations involving self-employed individuals, hidden incomes, unemployment and job loss, earning capacity, child care and medical and many other scenarios that can effect the final determination. Unfortunately, I receive telephone calls every day from people who chose to represent themselves at a child support hearing and were very unhappy with the result because the judge would not listen to them or they didn’t know the law. Remember, there are no “do-overs” and I cannot get a new hearing for you because you were unhappy with the result of the first hearing. Make sure that you are treated fairly the first time. I continue to represent my clients as their families and their needs change and modification of agreements and orders becomes necessary because of change in income or other financial circumstances. Have your circumstances changed since the last time you were in court?