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§ 12-202. Use of child support guidelines

West's Annotated Code of MarylandFamily LawEffective: July 1, 2017

West's Annotated Code of Maryland
Family Law (Refs & Annos)
Title 12. Child Support (Refs & Annos)
Subtitle 2. Child Support Guidelines (Refs & Annos)
Effective: July 1, 2017
MD Code, Family Law, § 12-202
§ 12-202. Use of child support guidelines
Mandatory use of guidelines; presumption; departure from guidelines
(a)(1) Subject to the provisions of paragraph (2) of this subsection, in any proceeding to establish or modify child support, whether pendente lite or permanent, the court shall use the child support guidelines set forth in this subtitle.
(2)(i) There is a rebuttable presumption that the amount of child support which would result from the application of the child support guidelines set forth in this subtitle is the correct amount of child support to be awarded.
(ii) The presumption may be rebutted by evidence that the application of the guidelines would be unjust or inappropriate in a particular case.
(iii) In determining whether the application of the guidelines would be unjust or inappropriate in a particular case, the court may consider:
1. the terms of any existing separation or property settlement agreement or court order, including any provisions for payment of mortgages or marital debts, payment of college education expenses, the terms of any use and possession order or right to occupy the family home under an agreement, any direct payments made for the benefit of the children required by agreement or order, or any other financial considerations set out in an existing separation or property settlement agreement or court order; and
2. the presence in the household of either parent of other children to whom that parent owes a duty of support and the expenses for whom that parent is directly contributing.
(iv) The presumption may not be rebutted solely on the basis of evidence of the presence in the household of either parent of other children to whom that parent owes a duty of support and the expenses for whom that parent is directly contributing.
(v) 1. If the court determines that the application of the guidelines would be unjust or inappropriate in a particular case, the court shall make a written finding or specific finding on the record stating the reasons for departing from the guidelines.
2. The court's finding shall state:
A. the amount of child support that would have been required under the guidelines;
B. how the order varies from the guidelines;
C. how the finding serves the best interests of the child; and
D. in cases in which items of value are conveyed instead of a portion of the support presumed under the guidelines, the estimated value of the items conveyed.
Adoption of guidelines; material change in circumstances
(b) The adoption or revision of the guidelines set forth in this subtitle is not a material change of circumstance for the purpose of a modification of a child support award.
Report
(c) On or before January 1, 1993, and at least every 4 years after that date, the Child Support Administration of the Department of Human Services shall:
(1) review the guidelines set forth in this subtitle to ensure that the application of the guidelines results in the determination of appropriate child support award amounts; and
(2) report its findings and recommendations to the General Assembly, subject to § 2-1246 of the State Government Article.

Credits

Added by Acts 1989, c. 2, § 1, eff. Feb. 24, 1989. Amended by Acts 1990, c. 58, § 1, eff. April 10, 1990; Acts 1997, c. 635, § 9, eff. July 1, 1997; Acts 1997, c. 636, § 9, eff. July 1, 1997; Acts 2000, c. 121, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2000; Acts 2004, c. 116, § 1, eff. July 1, 2004; Acts 2004, c. 491, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2004; Acts 2007, c. 5, § 1, eff. March 22, 2007; Acts 2010, c. 262, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2010; Acts 2010, c. 263, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2010; Acts 2017, c. 62, § 6.

Editors' Notes

HISTORICAL AND STATUTORY NOTES
2000 Legislation
Acts 2000, c. 121, inserted subsec. (a)(2)(iv) and redesignated former (iv) as (v).
Acts 2000, c. 121, § 2, provides:
“SECTION 2. AND BE IT FURTHER ENACTED, That this Act shall apply only to cases filed on or after the effective date of this Act.”
2004 Legislation
Acts 2004, c. 116, § 1, in subsec. (b), substituted “adoption or revision” for “adoption” in two locations.
Acts 2004, c. 491, § 1, in subsec. (b)(1) and (b)(2), inserted “or revision”.
2007 Legislation
Acts 2007, c. 5, § 1, made technical corrections to the Code.
2010 Legislation
Acts 2010, c. 262, § 1, and Acts 2010, c. 263, § 1, rewrote subsec. (b), which previously had read:
“(b)(1) Subject to the provisions of paragraph (2) of this subsection, the adoption or revision of the guidelines set forth in this subtitle may be grounds for requesting a modification of a child support award based on a material change in circumstances.
“(2) The adoption or revision of the guidelines set forth in this subtitle may not be grounds for requesting a modification of a child support award based on a material change in circumstances unless the use of the guidelines would result in a change in the award of 25% or more.”
2017 Legislation
Acts 2017, c. 62, § 6, in (c), substituted “Human Services” for “Human Resources” and substituted “Child Support Administration” for “Child Support Enforcement Administration”.
MD Code, Family Law, § 12-202, MD FAMILY § 12-202
Current through legislation effective July 1, 2019, from the 2019 Regular Session of the General Assembly.
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