Maryland Child Support Lawyers Protects Fathers’ Rights
The Carmiece Graves Law Firm protects mens’ rights in child support matters.
Call us at 240-573-7153 to schedule a consultation in Upper Marlboro, MD.
Both parents are expected to support their child under Maryland law, but in reality, one parent often seems to get away with doing less than they should.
While child support in Maryland is calculated based on certain formulas, judges have some discretion in altering the amounts based on evidence presented. If one parent convinces the judge that they are entitled to special treatment for extenuating circumstances, the support amounts may not be balanced fairly.
At the Carmiece Graves Law Firm , we work hard to protect men’s rights, particularly when it comes to issues such as child support. Our team brings a sophisticated understanding of finance to the field of family law, enabling the Carmiece Graves Law Firm to develop plans for support that are fair and functional in reality as well as on paper.
How Child Support is Calculated in Maryland
Numerous factors affect the calculation of child support obligations. The court will consider each parent’s income and the various expenses they incur for the child. These include:
- Custody arrangements – if custody is shared, both parents essentially maintain a home for the child resulting in greater expenses for each
- Costs for the child’s medical insurance and healthcare needs
- The number of children
- Costs for childcare
- Alimony payments
- Special expenses related to education, transportation, or other issues
Some factors are included in calculations under Maryland child support guidelines. Other factors are not included in the guidelines, but can be considered by the court to enable the judge to deviate from the guidelines.
For instance, if the parent paying support is also paying the mortgage on the home that the other parent lives in with the child, then the support amounts set by the court may be less than called for under the guidelines. It is important to ensure that your attorney is aware of all the facts that could affect support amounts, including the number of days the child lives with you and the expenses you are covering.
Modifying or Terminating Child Support
A significant change in circumstances could provide grounds for your attorney to request that the court modify child support obligations either up or down. The change in circumstances must be substantial and ongoing.
For instance, if the custody arrangements change or one parent gets a higher-paying job, that could justify a modification. If one parent voluntarily chooses to quit work or take a lower-paying job, however, the court might still consider that parent obligated to pay a higher support amount on the grounds that the parent could be earning more but chooses “voluntary impoverishment.” If the Maryland child support guidelines themselves change, and that change would cause the support amounts in your case to increase or decrease by at least 25%, that change is also grounds for a modification of support.
Generally, child support is not terminated until a child turns 18. The obligation to pay support could continue until age 19 if the child is still in high school.
Enforcing Child Support Orders in Maryland
Support calculations will show that each parent “owes” a certain percentage of support, but as a practical matter, only the parent who owes more will be making actual support payments. Generally, the parent without custody pays support to the parent with primary custody.
Payments are made directly from one parent to the other without court intervention unless a problem arises. Because child support is a court-ordered obligation, a parent paying support remains legally obligated to pay even if the parties reach their own agreement outside of court. It is important to have your attorney petition the court for approval of any child support arrangements and continue making payments as originally scheduled until the court approves the change.
Work with the Child Support Lawyers Who Protect Fathers’ Rights in Maryland
Fathers often feel guilty when they are separated from their children, and attorneys sometimes take advantage of that guilt to saddle them with an unfair amount of child support. When you are obligated to pay too much in child support, that can leave inadequate funds for you to enjoy the time you are able to spend with your children.
We don’t think that’s right. At the Carmiece Graves Law Firm, we fight to protect fathers’ rights when it comes to child support, custody, and a variety of other issues. Talk to us today to find out how we help you get child support arrangements that are fair for your situation.
Child Support is for the Benefit of the Child—Not the Parents
Maryland laws address child support from the perspective of the child’s rights, rather than the preferences of the parents. The parent receiving support will control the money, but they are supposed to use it for the child’s benefit rather than their own. If a parent uses the money improperly, it is important to contact an attorney to protect the child’s interests.
Parents may negotiate their own child support arrangement. However, if the arrangement is not found to be in the child’s best interests, the court will not approve it.