Maryland Child Custody Laws Up For Review

The Maryland child custody and support system has long been known to be lacking. With intensive investigations into the organizations that oversee child support and continued criticism of government involvement, state residents may have lost faith in many of the region’s existing processes. Now, though, two attorneys from Frederick County are joining forces with other state leaders to revamp a child custody system that could lead to major improvements for families throughout the state.

The endeavor is part of a comprehensive effort by The Commission on Child Custody Decision-Making, which was created by leaders in the General Assembly in early 2013. The commission is slated to meet for the first time during the month of September. Participants in the commission say they believe the ideas generated by the group will allow families in the area to make significant strides. Commission members will be evaluating the process currently used by judges to make custody decisions.

Families in Maryland have complained that judges’ rulings are not always uniform or fair to guardians and parents. In fact, the state does not have a systematic program to direct judges when they are awarding custody in family court. In other words, judges do not have a set of rules to help them determine who should receive custody. Now, the commission is considering drafting laws to guide judges during their custody proceedings, providing a more comprehensive system for families throughout the state.

In addition, the commission will study the effects of child custody litigation on children so legal processes can be modified to benefit young participants. Members of the commission will also consider techniques for maximizing parental interaction in children’s lives, along with the benefits and drawbacks of joint physical custody. The decisions made by this commission stand to vastly improve the lives of countless families throughout the state, and the conclusions drawn could even benefit those in other jurisdictions.

Source:, “Frederick County, Maryland attorneys to look at child custody changes” Danielle E. Gaines, Sep. 03, 2013