Maryland Child Support Lawyer
Maryland law establishes guidelines that state that both parents are responsible for financially supporting their children. When you are finalizing a custody dispute and your children primarily live at one parent’s household, the courts will enforce the financial obligation through a child support order. In most cases, the payments are made to the custodial parent by the non-custodial parent.
Despite the law holding both parents responsible, obtaining a child support order is not necessarily an easy process. You need a Maryland child support lawyer who can help. The family law attorneys at Henault & Sysko Chartered are here and ready to assist.
How Maryland Courts Calculate Child Support
The Maryland Child Support Guidelines are what courts look to when calculating child support. The judge will calculate the amount of monthly support based on the answers to the following questions:
- How many children do the parents have in common?
- What is the income for each parent on a monthly basis, prior to deductions?
- What is the monthly cost of work-related child care?
- How many overnights does each parent have with the child/children?
- What is the monthly cost for health insurance for the child/children?
Once the court applies these answers, the formula in the Maryland Child Support Guidelines will provide an amount that should be paid to the recipient parent. The courts follow the guidelines in every case, unless special circumstances warrant deviation in limited cases.
Potential special circumstances that could lead to the court deviating from the standard guidelines may include:
- Your child has special needs
- There are extraordinary medical expenses
- Your child already has a revenue stream from an independent source
- There is a substantial deviation in one parent’s income throughout the year (seasonal pay)
- The parent who is paying child support is also supporting his or her own parent financially
How a Maryland Child Support Attorney Can Help
The Maryland guidelines start with plugging in the parents’ available income, calculated monthly. In order to determine this amount, each parent must sign a financial affidavit. Typically, the affidavit is a lengthy document that covers your income source, monthly expenses, allowed deductions, and a list of assets and liabilities. Your Maryland child support attorney can help you fill out this document to make sure it’s truthful and accurate, so your ex does not accuse you of being deceptive or leaving information off. We can also help ensure your spouse is being honest and filling out the affidavit accurately and truthfully. If you believe your ex is hiding assets, you have legal options for trying to uncover the deception, including hiring experts like a forensic accountant.
If you or your spouse is requesting a deviation from the Maryland guidelines amount, we are there to present a compelling case as to why it should be or should not be granted, depending on your goal. It’s important to have a strong argument ready for the judge to support your position.
Contact a Maryland Child Support Lawyer
For representation and advice on your Maryland child custody and/or support hearings, contact Henault & Sysko Chartered today to schedule an initial consultation. Let one of our skilled attorneys help with all your family law needs.