Updates to Rules of Civil Procedure

Several updates are being made to the rules as it relates to family law matters. Rule 1915.11, which addresses the appointment of an attorney for a child for a custody matter, now permits the court to apportion the costs for an attorney appointed for a child as the court deems appropriate.

Rule 1915.15 will be revised to ensure parties’ names and addresses are included in a petition to modify a custody order. Finally, Rule 1920.33 will feature changes to the format and requirements for inventories and pretrial statements for equitable distribution matters.

Other proposals for change include an update to the support guidelines and self-support reserve which has not been revised since 2013. The current self-support reserve is $931 reflecting the 2012 poverty level for one person. There is a proposal to Rule 1915.3-2, concerning criminal record or abuse history, to include a space to indicate any involvement with a child protective services agency or active juvenile cases. Lastly, the criminal record history would add columns for contempt of an Order under the Protection from Abuse Act, adjudication of dependency or delinquency and history of sexual violence or intimidation under the Protection of Victims of Sexual Violence and Intimidation Act.

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