In Maryland, child support is calculated using the formula from Child Support Guidelines. The child support schedule ordered by the court is typically based on the guidelines unless one of the parties can prove the state’s formula would be inappropriate or unjust for their particular case. The parent with primary physical custody, or the custodial parent, is the party who receives child support payments. The parent without primary physical custody, the non-custodial parent, is the party that pays child support.
Child support in Maryland
The child support agreement can change based on changes to the parent’s income or the physical custody of the children. The child support agreement also changes if the parents are sharing physical custody of the children. Shared custody is defined as each parent keeping the children overnight for over 35% of the year or at least 127 overnights per year. For cases filed after Oct. 1, 2020, shared custody is considered having overnights for at least 25% of the year.
More on Maryland child support
When the overnights range between 25% and 30% of the year, the courts use a formula based on specific percentages. To calculate child support, Maryland courts need both parent’s gross monthly income and adjusted actual income, which accounts for any pre-existing child support or alimony payments either parent may have. The courts also need the work-related child care expenses, health insurance, extraordinary medical costs and a financial statement. Lying on these forms could warrant perjury charges.
Extraordinary medical costs may be other reasonable expenses not covered by health insurance. The financial statement is submitted to aid courts in making the fairest decision possible for the child. Parents attempting to avoid child support payments by remaining voluntarily impoverished or intentionally underearning may have income imputed, or assigned, by the court based on several socio-economic factors.