After a divorce between married parents, child support must be established. In Maryland, just as in other states, the child has a right to receive support from both parents. Here is what you should know about child support and how it’s determined.
What are the child support laws in Maryland?
Child support is determined through what’s in the best interests of the child. Per Maryland laws, both parents pay a specific portion of their gross income toward supporting their child. There are special guidelines that state how much each parent must pay.
Each parent pays child support toward their child until the child reaches their 18th birthday or after they have graduated from high school, whichever happens later. Support can continue up until the child turns 19. It can also be stopped if the child becomes emancipated before their 18th birthday.
How is child support determined in Maryland?
Maryland follows the income shares guidelines for determining child support. The specific amount that each parent must pay is calculated through a formula. That formula involves the combined incomes of both parents and the number of children they share. Then, a percentage of the total amount that each parent must pay toward each child is determined based on each party’s respective income. Even if one of the parents is unemployed, they are still required to pay their child.
As a general rule, the income shares rule is designed in a way that allows the child to continue receiving the same level of support as they would if their parents were still together. This is considered to be fair for both parents as well as the child and again, in the child’s best interests.
Of course, you can always come to an agreement on your own, but it will be subject to court approval. Either way, you will know that your child will be financially covered.