Characteristics of Complex Families in Maryland’s Child Support Caseload

Natalie Demyan and Letitia Logan Passarella
September 2022

A complex family is a family in which a parent has children with more than one partner. Complex families are growing in Maryland’s child support caseload. These families include non-custodial parents with multiple support orders and parents who are custodians and non-custodians. To better serve and understand them, Maryland studies the characteristics of complex families; their demographics, economic resources, and child support characteristics and outcomes; and the impact of child support paid or received on parents’ earnings. States and agencies may want to consider policies that will positively impact these parents’ ability to support their families.