Annapolis Child Support Attorneys Advocate for Same-Sex Clients
Helping LGBTQ clients protect their children and themselves
When a couple has children, issues involving child support and visitation are likely to arise. For same-sex parents who wish to divorce, the rules and requirements are the same as for heterosexual couples. Child support is determined by guidelines, not emotions.
For trustworthy legal advice in Maryland, you need an Annapolis child support attorney with experience in same-sex divorces, and one that can offer comprehensive counsel about your options. Look no further than the family law firm of Peters & Clark, P.A. Our team of experienced legal professionals keep the interests of you and your children at the forefront, guiding you toward workable solutions.
Determining child support in a Maryland same-sex divorce
Generally speaking, the parent who has primary residential custody is the one who receives child support from the other parent. The amount of support a parent pays will be based on a number of factors, including but not limited to:
- The income of both parents
- Child support or alimony payments made to previous spouses or to other children
- Additional non-salaried forms of income, including workers’ compensation, Social Security, stock dividends, etc.
- The number of minor children in the family
- Educational expenses, including the cost of day care or after-school care
- Anticipated medical expenses for the child, including the cost of insurance
The courts can deviate from the guidelines in cases where it serves the best interests of the children to do so. The Maryland Department of Human Services provides free information, including a support calculator, to help you estimate what types of payments you may be ordered to make, or to receive.
Challenges facing LGBTQ parents
No matter who you marry, when you divorce, you will face certain financial challenges, and child support may be one of them. Same-sex parents, however, face an odd set of circumstances in regard to biological children that does not apply to “traditional” families; namely, if both parents are not listed on the birth certificate, then one parent may not be required to pay child support. This is a different scenario than the one that faces opposite-sex parents who were unmarried, because a simple paternity test can prove that a father is the father. In same-sex marriages, however, it is far more likely that only one parent is biologically related to the children – and Maryland will not allow two men to be listed on the birth certificate. The Supreme Court decision in Pavan v. Smith in June 2017 could change all of that, but as of this writing, Maryland’s laws still hold.
Our attorneys understand the unique situations that so many same-sex parents find themselves in, and are able to help you navigate these waters. We provide thoughtful, comprehensive guidance for clients facing myriad problems when it comes to child support, and can help clients modify existing orders if there is a material change in circumstances, as well as assist in having existing orders enforced.
Compassionate Maryland attorneys guiding you through complex custody matters
The law firm of Peters & Clark, P.A. proudly represents gay and lesbian parents seeking assistance with child support and other family law needs. Our Annapolis child custody lawyers pride themselves on professionalism and compassion. Families are precious, complex entities, and we want to represent you and the best interests of your children. To schedule a consultation time, please call 410-921-2422 or fill out the firm’s contact form. Peters & Clark, P.A. represents clients in Anne Arundel and the surrounding areas.