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Will I Automatically Receive Child Support If I Am Awarded Custody?

If you are awarded custody, you will not automatically receive child support. You will have to make a request for child support by including a request for child support in your Petition for Custody. You can also file a child support action alone, without filing for custody. Child support may be handled two ways: One way is by going through the court, and the other is by going through the child support office. You don’t necessarily need a custody case in order to have a child support case, and you can have a stand-alone custody case without requesting child support.

If Both Parents Have Shared Custody, Does Someone Have To Pay Child Support?

If both parents have shared custody, one parent may still need to pay child support, but it will depend on the gross income of the parties on the level of shared custody. Shared custody starts at 128 nights and goes to 182/183 nights.

Child support is calculated in Maryland based on the child support guidelines, so it’s not a number that the judge just throws out there. Since the institution of the guidelines, we enter numbers into a formula and receive a certain amount for the order of child support. Sometimes it will be a minimal amount of child support, such as $100 or $200 a month in shared custody cases. Sometimes neither party will have to pay any child support, and there can always be an agreement between two parties that they will be generally charged with the support of the child when the child is with them.

When Does Child Support Start? Could It Start During The Separation?

Yes, child support can start during a separation, as long as one parent physically has the child with them. That parent can request child support, and the court will consider it. It is best to have an Order from the Court in place, if one is requested permanent support.

Can The Amount Of Child Support Ever Be Modified?

Yes, the mount of child support can be modified based on the same standards by which custody orders are modified. There must be a material change in the circumstances to modify child support. This may happen if there is a substantial increase or decrease of income by one or both of the parties. Sometimes child support is modified for a child ageing out; due to no longer needing full time childcare.

In other cases, the amount of child support may be modified if the custody arrangement changes. There are many situations in which the parent who is receiving child support no longer has the child. Sometimes a third party or the paying parent NOW has the child living with him/her. If that is the case, the parent could say, “I should no longer be paying child support because I’m actually keeping the child now.”

For more information on Child Support & Child Custody Awards, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (800) 400-2350 today.

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