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Maryland Child Custody Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Maryland on
Q: I have custody grandson Visits have be agreed on with parents Bc of Covid19 do I have to allow visits during this time?

Grandson is 3, I have Sole/physical custody. Mom has stayed away to prevent any spread germs but his dad still wants a weekly visit

Elizabeth Pugliese
Elizabeth Pugliese answered on Apr 1, 2020

The Maryland Stay At Home Order specifically states that travel is permitted pursuant to any court order. If the access is court ordered, it must be allowed to go forward.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Maryland on
Q: When do you produce reference letters? At the hearing or with the initial filing?

Custody case

Elizabeth Pugliese
Elizabeth Pugliese answered on Mar 25, 2020

"Reference letters" presumably letters from friends and neighbors about the issues are not admissible in court. They are considered hearsay. There must be live testimony.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Maryland on
Q: I filed for sole legal and physical custody in MD, how do I know when the defendant has been served?

Does the circuit court handle serving the defendant for you or is that something you have to do yourself?

Elizabeth Pugliese
Elizabeth Pugliese answered on Jan 18, 2020

You must make arrangements to have the Defendant serve. You cannot serve the Defendant yourself, as in hand the person the papers, or mail them yourself. The sheriff will do it for $40. A private process server is slightly more.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Child Support and Family Law for Maryland on
Q: Filed for child support in md, father moved to PA to get out of paying. Signed agreement between both of usWhat can I do

Md will only send him papers in the mail (he keeps returning them) because of ‘jurisdiction’. We have an agreement (signed) to which he hasn’t stuck to at all regarding payments and weekends for him. What can I do to get this enforced and resolved?

Elizabeth Pugliese
Elizabeth Pugliese answered on Jan 7, 2020

You can file with the court to enforce the agreement yourself. You do not need child support enforcement to do it. Have him personally served. Then proceed with the court matter.

You should consult with an attorney about all of your options.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Maryland on
Q: I moved out of state w/ my child Nov ‘18 without notifying the court. 14 months later the father has reopened the case.

There are reasons I left. Mainly because my son, 13 then, refused to see his father Bc of abuse accusations and threats of his father to kill me in front of my son. The father then cut off all contact, including blocking my number. Financially we were on the verge of homelessness so we moved to NC... Read more »

Elizabeth Pugliese
Elizabeth Pugliese answered on Jan 7, 2020

Regardless of the reasons, you still needed to follow the correct process by going through the court. Will you lose custody? Probably not. However, the court will not be happy with you which will make it much harder to present your case.

Online mediation does not change a court...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Family Law, Civil Rights and Constitutional Law for Maryland on
Q: Once I am deemed the "legal father" by the affidavit of parentage (Maryland), am I protected by the 14th amendment?

Once being deemed the legal father by Maryland's Affidavit of parentage, does this give me full legal rights to have a relationship with my child, and be an active father? Even if the mother has since moved to another state? Do my rights disappear because she, and the children crossed over an... Read more »

Joseph D. Allen
Joseph D. Allen answered on Dec 19, 2019

You should consult with a family law attorney- they will be able to tell you whether you would need to file something in Maryland or the other state to challenge the ruling/judgment (most likely the other state). It is unclear what the due process/14th Amendment violation would be if you had... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Family Law and Child Custody for Maryland on
Q: Soon to be ex-husband threatening to create problems for me if I don't get an abortion

I have been in a very bad marriage from 5 years, it is not necessarily physically violent but it does get very violent and I have many times decided to quit but he always stops me. I am at last pregnant now and I do want to have the baby because I have a good job and supportive family however I no... Read more »

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on Sep 24, 2019

Leave this abusive relationship and go have your baby. File for custody and request child support. Call House of Ruth for advice and possibly representation or referral to pro bono or reduced fee legal representation.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Maryland on
Q: what is it called when a parent makes a child fundle with his private parts

grabbing their hands and making them play with his penus

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on Aug 23, 2019

It’s called child abuse. Call the police and report the abuse. Be prepared for Child Protective Services to get involved and the person potentially being arrested and prosecuted. If the perpetrator is living in the household of the child, that person or the child will be removed from the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Maryland on
Q: Divorced parents have shared custody 50/50-but mother takes teen less than 50%- can father get full phys. custody?

14 yo teen wants to live with father due to poor relationship w/ his mother. It's a battle each time he is scheduled to go there - and has at times, refused to get in her car. She continues to collect child support but rarely takes her son except for 1 or 2 nights on weekend. Son is registered to... Read more »

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on Aug 14, 2019

Yes. Hire a lawyer to file for modification of custody and support.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Maryland on
Q: What legal actions can I take for sole custody of my child or joint ?

My childs father will not stick to the agreements we have and it is very difficult at times. I would like either full custody or a court ordered joint visitation. Not to mention he only wants to do “every other weekend”. His family does most of the work for him as far as picking my child up and... Read more »

Bennett James Wills
Bennett James Wills answered on Jul 31, 2019

Need more information. If you do not have a court order regarding custody and visitation than you should contact a local attorney to best determine your options. Court orders can be enforced better than informal agreements.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Maryland on
Q: My brother is going through an issue w/ custody of his daughter and his ex wife is trying to take full custody

He told me that she can get full custody since they both don’t currently live in my nieces school district and she filed first so he has no rights. I don’t live in Maryland and I was wondering if this is true and or if there is anything that can be done or if he is leaving important information out

Bennett James Wills
Bennett James Wills answered on Jul 31, 2019

The best thing he can do it get an attorney asap. He has rights as a father. School district is one of many factors that may be considered when determining factors that would be in the best interest of the child.

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Maryland on
Q: Pregnant stay at home mom.

My sister is a pregnant (7 months) stay at home mom of 3 girls (babygirl due in October). Her husband was caught cheating on the same day my sister told him she was pregnant. She’s had a part time job for the last year in efforts to transition back into the work force. Now she has a high risk... Read more »

Elizabeth Pugliese
Elizabeth Pugliese answered on Jul 30, 2019

The parent with more money is not a consideration. It is who actually cares for the children and is willing to care to for them. If he suddenly wants the kids when he only sees them when he asks while not providing any financial support, the court will likely realize this is about not paying... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Maryland on
Q: What can I do to see my kids even when the mother says no

She doesn't have a stable home she does not work

Dawn Renee Gould
Dawn Renee Gould answered on Jul 29, 2019

Your question is very vague. Is there already a court order in place? Is there is a contractual agreement between you two? If there is not a court order, you need to file a complaint for access/visitation/custody. If there is a court order and she is violating it, you need to file contempt and... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Maryland on
Q: What's a formal format letter for custody to be notarized vs going thru legal court system

What's the legal binding of this type of agreement

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on Jul 10, 2019

Lawyers draft separation, property settlement, custody and support agreements all the time, sometimes just addressing one or two of those issues. This forum is not designed to provide legal forms for do-it-yourself drafting. Custody, visitation and support agreements or consent orders (as well as... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Divorce, Child Custody, Child Support and Domestic Violence for Maryland on
Q: What proper/careful steps do I take to make sure an abusive parent/estranged husband is not given custody or visitation?

My children’s father/estranged husband abused me for 18 yrs. My bones have been broken, & I’ve been covered in lumps & bruises. His violent alcoholic abuse turned into countless death threats & he started threatening & physically abusing the boys & my disabled Mother. Which he admit to in... Read more »

Pawnee A. Davis
Pawnee A. Davis answered on Jul 4, 2019

Your situation needs a lawyer to ask you questions and get more information in order to advise you. So, please contact an attorney experienced in divorce and domestic violence.

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Maryland on
Q: Is there a way that Me and my sister can move with my dad because my mom is rarely there to take care of us.

I’m 17 and have been asking my mom multiple times if I could go live with my father because she is constantly getting home late from work where she works from 8:00am - 4:30 but gets home at a lot of times 9pm or even sometime 12am at night. When she isn’t home always have to take care of my... Read more »

Elizabeth Pugliese
Elizabeth Pugliese answered on Jul 3, 2019

Your father can file to modify custody. He does not need your mother's permission to do so. Also in the state of Maryland, you can petition the court in your own right to modify YOUR custody. If your sister is under 16, she cannot do it herself.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Maryland on
Q: What right do a Noncustodial parent have when it’s no Custody/Visitation order in place

Mom and child are maryland residents. Dad lives in Philadelphia. Mom is the only one on the birth certificate but dad did Establish paternity. We have been to court but the case was dismissed without prejudice because dad didn’t show up. So now I’m face with boundaries being cross confuses as... Read more »

Elizabeth Pugliese
Elizabeth Pugliese answered on Jun 13, 2019

Unless there is an order specifying otherwise, both parents have equal rights to have the care of the child and to make decisions about the child.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody, Child Support and Domestic Violence for Maryland on
Q: Can I move out of state with my 6 month old?

My daughter has been under my sole care until she was 4 months old, but due to an abusive situation at my parents, we had to move in with her father( the only other person we know in Maryland.) Me and my child's father were never married but he signed an Affidavit of Paternity after she was born.... Read more »

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on May 26, 2019

It’s a complicated question. With no court order in effect, either parent has legal authority to have physical custody and can move out of state. However, because this is the child’s home state of residence, Maryland courts have jurisdiction to hear a custody dispute under the Uniform Child... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Maryland on
Q: My childs father is going for shared custody

He was abusive to me and got arrested when i finally called 911 and i have a protective order and through that protective order i made sure he could see our daughter this happened 5 months ago she is now 8 months but he sees her tuesday,thursday 4-9pm on those days and monday, Wednesday, 4-9pm and... Read more »

Elizabeth Pugliese
Elizabeth Pugliese answered on Apr 28, 2019

If he actually said that in court, he is not getting joint custody. One of the factors in determining custody is sincerity of request. The parent has to want to have the child, not just want to get out of child support.

The court will consider the totality of the situation in...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Maryland on
Q: Is it considered child support fraud if my son resides with me for the last 2 years and she still receives child support

She refuses to switch his school or stop the child support because it helps her pay her bills. But I feed him clothe him take and pick up from school what can I do? I have plenty of text messages and people who have witnessed this who stated they would go to court for me

Elizabeth Pugliese
Elizabeth Pugliese answered on Mar 20, 2019

You MUST file to modify the child support. As long as the order is in place, it must be followed. If she will not modify it, you must.

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