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Can the Court Order Health Insurance for a Child?
Yes, in Maryland, the Court can order either parent to include a child on their health insurance policy if the child can be included at a reasonable cost to the parent.
Whether the cost is "reasonable" will depend upon the facts and circumstances of the particular case, including which parent's policy is most affordable and which parent's policy offers the most beneficial and accessible benefits to the child.
If a parent is required to cover a child under their health insurance policy, that parent will receive a credit for the cost of the child's coverage (e.g. the difference between individual and family coverage) when calculating child support under the Maryland Child Support Guidelines.
In Maryland, parents can typically cover their children under their health insurance policies until age 18 and thereafter until age 23, so long as the child is a full-time student. However, the Court can only order such coverage for the duration of child support.
Under Maryland law, child support is determined based on the Income Shares Model. Therefore the monthly support amount for the child is proportionally shared between the two parents based on their incomes, past W-2s, and child support worksheets. One parent will then pay the other parent his or her share of child support. Considerations will also be made for existing debt, property settlement, mortgages, other children or any other financial considerations.
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