Owings Mills, MD asked in Child Support for Maryland

Q: My daughter is 18 but she dropped out of school. She has not graduated. Am I obligated to pay support?

Her mother signed her drop out papers. She is not in school

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2 Lawyer Answers

Elizabeth Pugliese

  • Rockville, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: If there is a current child support order, file to terminate immediately. It will not happen unless you file. The Mother probably will not. If it is going through child support enforcement they do not keep track of the age of the children and modify it for you. You must act.

Child support ends at age 18, unless attending school. As she dropped out, she is not attending school.

Mark Oakley

  • Rockville, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: No, by law she is emancipated as of 18 when she ceases to be enrolled in high school. This Code provision is found in Maryland General Provisions Code Section 1-401:

In general

(a)(1) The age of majority is 18 years.

(2) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section or as otherwise specifically provided by statute, an individual at least 18 years old is an adult for all purposes and has the same legal capacity, rights, powers, privileges, duties, liabilities, and responsibilities that an individual at least 21 years old had before July 1, 1973.

Child support

(b) An individual who has attained the age of 18 years and who is enrolled in secondary school has the right to receive support and maintenance from both of the individual's parents until the first to occur of the following events:

(1) the individual dies;

(2) the individual marries;

(3) the individual is emancipated;

(4) the individual graduates from or is no longer enrolled in secondary school; or

(5) the individual attains the age of 19 years.

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