What You Need to Know About Child Support in Maryland

Learn about how child support is calculated in Maryland and what happens if a parent fails to pay. Find out how hiring the right lawyer can make a difference in your case.

What You Need to Know About Child Support in Maryland

When it comes to child support in Maryland, there are a few key points to keep in mind. Child support is based on each parent's gross monthly income (before taxes) and is calculated using a formula that takes into account each parent's income from all sources, including paychecks, tips, bonuses, commissions, and rents. The parent who has primary physical custody of the child will typically receive alimony from the other parent, although this can change if the custodial parent has a significantly higher income or if the parents share physical custody. The formula for calculating child support is straightforward: a fixed percentage of the non-custodial parent's income is paid monthly to the custodial parent to cover basic child support expenses.

If a parent fails to pay child support, you may need to file a contempt of court lawsuit for the judge to enforce the child support order. The law does not define what constitutes a material change, but generally any change that causes at least 25 percent in parents' income or in the child's expenses will be taken into account. Maryland expects both parents to contribute to the care of their children in proportion to their earnings. The Department of Human Services has a child support calculator that can be used to estimate the amount of child support in your case. Courts often use incorrect estimates of parenting time when calculating child support, which could lead to an incorrect amount being paid or received.

Hiring the right lawyer for your child support case can make a big difference in how much you pay or receive every month for many years. The court orders that the custodial parent be paid a fixed percentage of 25% of the non-custodial parent's income for child support. This percentage is applied regardless of whether or not the non-custodial parent actually has that level of income.

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