Child Support

Are you concerned your several income sources will be considered income for child support?

Are you afraid you won’t be able to pay the guideline child support?

If your combined annual gross income is more than $360,000, do you need help deciding how much your children shall receive in child support?

Whether you Divorce In Colorado with children or petition the Court for Allocation of Parental Responsibility when you have children but didn’t marry, the Court will enter orders for child support.

The determination of child support is determined by Colorado Revised Statute 14-10-115

The factors to consider to determine support are:

  1. The financial resources of the child;
  2. The financial resources of the custodial parent;
  3. The standard of living the child would have enjoyed had the marriage not been dissolved;
  4. The physical and emotional condition of the child and their educational needs; and
  5. The financial resources and needs of the noncustodial parent.

The two most contentious issues when negotiating child support maybe

  1.    The number of overnights your child has with each parent.
  2.    The income of each parent is used to calculate support.

We encourage parents to first design the best parenting plan for their child before worrying about child support. The misconception that a parent should fight for more overnights with their children to limit the amount they pay in support is often a problem. Whether you pay the most available parent or pay to have your children with you, the cost of having kids before and after divorce is a financial reality.

While the list of “income” is long and detailed, many of our client’s combined annual gross income exceeds the State guidelines of $360,000. This means the calculation for child support may be such that the conversation becomes what the child’s needs are and what is a reasonable amount for each parent to contribute to support the child.

Should the issue go to trial, the judge will have the discretion to order the child support when the gross income exceeds the child support guidelines.

First, it is important to determine the following before knowing how much support you may be ordered to pay.

  • Income of each parent?
  • The number of overnights the child has with each parent?
  • Who pays the child’s health insurance, and what is the monthly premium?
  • Are there any work-related child care costs to factor in or agreed upon expenses
  • Are there any agreed-upon additional expenses to consider?- often tuition, travel, or the costs of your child’s competitive sports?

Sometimes parents attempt to negotiate a lump sum payment of support or avoid paying support based upon allocating certain assets. While child support is always the child’s right, and not the parent, at Divorce In Colorado, we are often able to negotiate and structure support in a fashion that benefits all parties.