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  • Writer's pictureLaurie M. Wasserman

New Child Support Law Goes Into Effect October 1st, 2020

On October 1, 2020, the way in which child support is calculated in Maryland will change. Under the current law, there are two ways in which child support is calculated: sole physical custody to one parent, or shared physical custody between both parents. Currently, when a parent has physical custody of their children more than 35% of the time (or 128 overnights), child support is calculated using a shared custody model.

Beginning in October, child support will continue to be calculated under either sole physical custody or shared custody model. However, the percentage of time a parent has physical custody of their children in order to be considered “shared” custody under the guidelines will decrease to 25% of the time (92 overnights). Child support is then calculated based on the percentage of time the children spend with each parent. Under the new law, if a parent has shared physical custody of their children more than 25% percent of the time, but less than 30% of the time, there are new calculations for each increment between 25% and 29%.

The new law will change the number of overnights a parent needs to have “shared physical custody” by 36 overnights per year and will allow the parent having 92 or more overnights per year get the benefit of paying shared physical custody child support guidelines (which are usually less than primary physical custody).

This law will not be applied retroactively. It only applies to cases to establish or modify child support filed after October 1, 2020.

If you have questions about child custody or this new law, please email Laurie Wasserman at or call our main number 410-842-1070. For the foreseeable future, we will be available by telephone and virtually to serve our clients.


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