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§ 5-203. Natural guardianship; powers and duties of parents; award of custody to parent

West's Annotated Code of MarylandFamily LawEffective: October 1, 2014

West's Annotated Code of Maryland
Family Law (Refs & Annos)
Title 5. Children (Refs & Annos)
Subtitle 2. Parent and Child (Refs & Annos)
Effective: October 1, 2014
MD Code, Family Law, § 5-203
§ 5-203. Natural guardianship; powers and duties of parents; award of custody to parent
Natural guardianship
(a)(1) The parents are the joint natural guardians of their minor child.
(2) A parent is the sole natural guardian of the minor child if the other parent:
(i) dies;
(ii) abandons the family; or
(iii) is incapable of acting as a parent.
Powers and duties of parents
(b) The parents of a minor child, as defined in § 1-103 of the General Provisions Article:
(1) are jointly and severally responsible for the child's support, care, nurture, welfare, and education; and
(2) have the same powers and duties in relation to the child.
Duties of parents of minor parents
(c) If one or both parents of a minor child is an unemancipated minor, the parents of that minor parent are jointly and severally responsible for any child support for a grandchild that is a recipient of temporary cash assistance to the extent that the minor parent has insufficient financial resources to fulfill the child support responsibility of the minor parent.
Award of custody to parent
(d)(1) If the parents live apart, a court may award custody of a minor child to either parent or joint custody to both parents.
(2) Neither parent is presumed to have any right to custody that is superior to the right of the other parent.

Credits

Added by Acts 1984, c. 296, § 2, eff. Oct. 1, 1984. Amended by Acts 1986, c. 65, § 1, eff. July 1, 1986; Acts 1995, c. 491, § 1, eff. July 1, 1995; Acts 1996, c. 10, § 1, eff. April 9, 1996; Acts 1996, c. 351, § 4, eff. July 1, 1996; Acts 2002, c. 180, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2002; Acts 2014, c. 104, § 2, eff. Oct. 1, 2014.
Formerly Art. 72A, § 1.

Editors' Notes

HISTORICAL AND STATUTORY NOTES
1995 Legislation
Acts 1995, c. 491, §§ 4, 10, and 15, provide:
“SECTION 4. AND BE IT FURTHER ENACTED, That any provisions of Section 1 of this Act which require the approval of federal waivers by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or the U.S. Department of Agriculture are contingent on such approval and will not take effect before the beginning of the period covered by such waivers. If any required federal waivers are not approved on or before December 31, 1995, the provisions of Section 1 of this Act which require such waivers shall be null and void without the necessity of further action by the General Assembly.”
“SECTION 10. AND BE IT FURTHER ENACTED, That, for the purpose of any petition to referendum, the provisions of this Act are not severable notwithstanding the provisions of Article 1, § 23 of the Code. If any portion of this Act is rejected by the voters pursuant to a referendum, then the other provisions of this Act shall be null and void and of no further force and effect.”
“SECTION 15. AND BE IT FURTHER ENACTED, That Section 1 of this Act shall remain effective for a period of 3 years, and, at the end of June 30, 1998 and with no further action required by the General Assembly, Section 1 of this Act shall be abrogated and of no further force and effect.”
2002 Legislation
Acts 2002, c. 180, § 1, in subsec. (b), in the introductory paragraph, inserted “, as defined in Article 1, section 24 of the Code”.
Acts 2002, c. 180, § 2, provides:
“SECTION 2. AND BE IT FURTHER ENACTED, That this Act shall be considered to be a material change of circumstances for purposes of modifying a child support order issued before the effective date of this Act.”
2014 Legislation
Acts 2014, c. 104, § 2, in subsec. (b), substituted “§ 1-103 of the General Provisions Article” for “Article 1, § 24 of the Code”.
MD Code, Family Law, § 5-203, MD FAMILY § 5-203
Current through legislation effective July 1, 2019, from the 2019 Regular Session of the General Assembly.
End of Document© 2019 Thomson Reuters. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.