Categories :: Family Law > Kinship Care

Types of Kinship Care

In Maryland, a person assuming care of a relative’s child is referred to as a kinship caregiver.  There are two types of kinship care: formal & informal. In the case of Formal Kinship Care, the child has come to the attention of the State and is now in the custody of the State but is placed with a relative. In Informal Kinship Care, the child's parent(s) voluntarily placed the child in the care of a relative by blood or marriage. Legal custody is not required.

A kinship care giver must be related by blood or marriage within five degrees of consanguinity or affinity.

Read the Law: MD Code, Family Law § 5-534

Read the Regulations: COMAR 13A.08.05.00


If you provide care for a relative child - for 24 hours a day, seven days a week - there are benefits that you may be eligible to receive.

  • Food Stamps
  • Child Care
  • Social Security Benefits
  • Medical Assistance
  • Temporary cash assistance grant

Useful Documents:

  • Education Affidavit: Provides relative caregivers assistance in enrolling the child in school and allows the relative caregiver to be an advocate for the child in school matters. 

For more information, visit MD Dept Human Resources Kinship Care.


Dept of Human Services Kinship Care website

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