In Maryland both parents have a legal duty to support their child based to their ability to provide that support. Since 1990, Maryland has had child support guidelines in effect, which have a formula for calculating child support based on a proportion of each parent's gross income. The Department of Human Resources has a free child support calculator to help estimate the amount of child support a court may approve. Just as courts must often make the crucial decision as to child custody and visitation, so too must it often determine how much child support the noncustodial parent will be ordered to pay.

The People’s Law Library of Maryland also provides a legal overview of child support law in Maryland. If you have a low- or limited income, the Legal Aid Bureau may be able to provide assistance with a child support case.

For more information on these programs call 2-1-1.