The Baltimore County Office of Child Support Enforcement located at 170 W Ridgely Rd Suite 200, Lutherville, MD 21093 is the government agency tasked with determining child support and paternity in Baltimore County Child Support cases.
If you need child support from the other parent you can apply for child support through the child support enforcement office. If you apply for certain government benefits for the minor child you may be requested to file for child support through the Office of Child Support Enforcement.
How do I file for child support with the Baltimore County Office of Child Support Enforcement?
You can contact the Baltimore County Office of Child Support Enforcement online or at 800-332-6347.
Who pays child support?
Each natural parent of the child is obligated to support the child. Either parent may be ordered to pay child support to the other parent. If paternity is disputed, the Office of Child Support Enforcement may order a paternity test, sometimes called a DNA test, to determine the likelihood that a person is the genetic parent of the child.
The Office of Child Support Enforcement may request that you sign an Affidavit of Parentage that requires you to admit that you are the parent. You should consult an attorney before signing any documents at the Office of Child Support Enforcement. If you sign an Affidavit of Parentage you may be financial responsible for the child, even if you determine later that you are not actually the child’s parent.
How is child Support Calculated?
Child Support is calculated by using the Maryland Child Support Guidelines. If you and the other parent have a combined income of $15,000 or less per month, the guidelines are used, if the combined income is higher than the actual expenses of the child are considered.
The guidelines will determine how much a child is eligible to receive as a proportion of the parents’ combined income.
To determine the child support figure, you first need to know some figures:
- Your gross income (before taxes) and the other parent’s gross income
- Whether either parent has a pre-existing child support obligation for another child
- Whether either party pays or receives alimony,
- The total number of overnights the child spends at each household in a year
- The monthly cost of work related daycare
- The monthly cost of health insurance for just the child
- Whether there are any extra-ordinary medical expenses
- Whether a parent receives Cash Medical Expenses and
- The costs of attending a special or private school to meet the particular educational needs of the child or any expenses for transportation of the child between the homes of the parents.
How Much Will My Child Support be?
To determine the actual amount of child support you need to consult an attorney. The Maryland Department of Human Resources has a child support calculator but you should be sure to speak to a Baltimore County Child Support lawyer to determine your actual child support obligation. There are many factors to consider when determining child support and you should call a child support lawyer to make sure the child support figure is accurate.
How Many Overnights for Joint Custody in Maryland
Shared physical custody is when both parties have at least 128 overnights in a year (or 35% of the year) and both parents contribute to the expenses of the child in addition to paying child support.
There are two sets of guidelines that are used to determine child support in Maryland. Primary Physical Custody to one Parent or Shared Physical Custody. To determine which set of guidelines to use, a parent needs to count the number of overnights they have in a year. If each parent has at least 128 overnights in a year than Shared Physical Custody Guidelines are used. If a parent has less than 128 overnights in a year, the Primary Physical Custody Guidelines are used.
Why do Overnights Matter?
The amount of child support a parent pays various widely depending on whether a parent has Primary Physical Custody or Shared Physical Custody. A parent with shared physical custody will most likely have a lower child support obligation but will have to contribute to other expenses for the child. If there is a custody dispute, often times custody should be determined before a final child support amount can be correctly established.
Do I need a lawyer for child support?
You should consult with a lawyer if you are interested in legal advice for child support. Whether you need child support or are asked to pay child support, a Baltimore County Child Support Lawyer can help protect your rights. The Office of Child Support Enforcement has lawyers available for the benefit of the child but they do not represent either parent.
What if I have more Questions?
If you would like to discuss your child support case with a lawyer please call The Law Office of David D. Nowak, LLC at 443-470-9071 or email us using this contact form.