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5 Things to Know About Child Support

Child support can be a touchy subject for many ex-spouses. It can be heavily litigated and outcomes vary from case to case. However, child support will always be based on the best interest of the child. Wondering how it works? Take a look at these six things you should know about child support.

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The Person Who Pays Child Support is the Non-Custodial Parent

While it’s common for fathers to be the ones paying child support, it’s not always the case. The parent who pays child support is usually the one who doesn’t have primary child custody. That means that mothers and fathers could potentially pay child support. 

There is a Formula for Calculating Child Support

How much a parent pays for child support is based on a variety of factors. Maryland courts determine child support payments using the Uniform Maryland Child Support Guidelines. Using those guidelines, the courts will take these into consideration to determine child support payments:

  • Both parent’s combined adjusted actual income
  • Cost of health insurance 
  • Work-related daycare costs
  • Alimony paid or received by either party 
  • Other related expenses

There are Consequences for Not Paying Child Support

If a spouse fails to pay child support, consequences can be dire. They will be found in violation of the agreement and court order. As a result, it can lead to being found contempt of the court, and this can have consequences such as:

  • Seizure of assets
  • Wage garnishment
  • Reimbursement of spouse’s attorney fees 
  • Other penalties 

Child Support Agreements Can be Modified

If you or your co-parent is having trouble paying child support once an agreement has been made, either party may request that the child support be reduced or modified. Things happen, and circumstances change, and that’s why child support agreements can be modified. If you have an increase in income, a decrease in income or your child’s circumstances have changed, these are all grounds for a modification of the agreement. 

The Length of Child Support Varies

Child support payments usually last until the child is 18 or graduates from high school, whichever is last to occur. However, in Maryland, child support can last until 19 if the child hasn’t graduated from high school. If a spouse has fallen behind on child support payments, they can still be obligated to pay until the arrears are paid in full, regardless of the child’s age. 

An Experienced Family Lawyer Can Help

If you’re navigating the complex process of child support, ZM Law Group can help. With over 20 years of experience, Zhanna A. Maydanich knows what it takes to get the best result for your child. Don’t go through this process alone. Have a knowledgeable family attorney fight for you. 

Contact us today for more information. 

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