DC and Maryland Child Support Attorneys

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How Child Support Gets Calculated in DC and Maryland

After divorcing your spouse or separating from a partner, the shock of going from a two-income household to managing child-related expenses on your own can be financially overwhelming. You may find yourself wondering how you can afford medical costs, tuition, and just the basic necessities your child needs on your own. Fortunately, DC and Maryland law expects both parents to share the expense of raising their children, and the state child support program ensures this happens.

State law uses strict guidelines to calculate both parents’ child support obligations using a formula based on each parent’s income. Any custody agreements, special needs requirements for your child, and other factors are considered during this process.
Because this support will include more than costs related to food, shelter, and clothing, you will also need to submit any regular expenses that impact the well-being of your child, including medical needs.
Typical financial obligations parents face in child support calculations include:
  • Daycare
  • Health care
  • Paying or receiving alimony
  • Insurance
  • Pre-existing child support obligations
  • Transportation
  • Education
  • Counseling and therapy
Additional family circumstances could require the court to deviate from standard guidelines when determining a parent’s support obligation. This could be special needs situations where a child needs extraordinary medical care that incurs significant medical care and treatment costs, including medication and therapy. It is not always about medical conditions or disabilities that could factor into a support order. Suppose your child has an exceptional talent for playing an instrument or playing basketball. In that case, you may have to help pay for the additional costs associated with getting them to competitions or training.

Modification of Child Support

Under some circumstances, you could file for a modification of support if you have experienced a material change in your life that affects your child’s well-being. 
Common reasons that a parent may request that the court adjust the amount paid as support include:
  • One of the parents remarries
  • New custody agreements
  • A parent relocates due to a work or family issue
  • You or your ex-spouse experience a significant raise or loss in income
  • Medical situations
State law allows family court judges to calculate support outside of normal guidelines if adhering to them would be unfair or inappropriate to one of the parents. 

When Do Child Support Payments End?

A frequent question we receive here at the Law Offices of Thomas Stahl is when child support payments end? This is typically when your child turns 18 in Maryland or 21 in DC, but sometimes it can end sooner in emancipation cases. Regardless of when the order expires, both parents must work together to ensure their child receives the support they deserve. As long-time child support lawyers, we help parents with a variety of child support-related issues. If you need guidance regarding a support order you pay or receive, contact our firm today and set up a consultation to discuss your case and determine what rights you have.

How Does Child Support Enforcement Work in DC and Maryland?

The District of Columbia has the Child Support Services Division (CSSD) while the state of Maryland has the Child Support Administration (CSA) to help parents create a child support order for their children. If your order is part of your divorce agreement, this office will ensure that payments get made according to the terms you and your ex-spouse agreed to in your settlement. If you could not reach an agreement, this agency can file for support on behalf of the parent due to receive support and obtain a court order on their behalf.

These offices also purses parents who fail to meet their child support order obligations, which can have significant legal ramifications for the paying party. Whether you need support or are struggling to make your court-ordered payments each month, speak with one of our family law attorneys about your situation to understand your options in a CSSD or CSA action.

Contact the Law Offices of Thomas Stahl Regarding Your Child Support Issue

If you need a skilled child support attorney to advise you on current law, modify an existing support order, or create one, The Law Offices of Thomas Stahl are here to help you every step of the way. As a recognized Maryland Super Lawyer since 2013, Mr. Stahl can advocate on your behalf and ensure any child support order created by the court is reasonable and just to your children. Contact us today at (410) 696-4326 or (202) 964-7280 send us a message through our online form to set up a consultation regarding your case.

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