Establishing a child support payment schedule can be an exceptionally frustrating experience. On the one hand, child support laws are in place to ensure children have sufficient access to adequate financial support from the non-custodial parent. On the other hand, the law also takes into account the unique financial burden that monthly child support deductions can impose.
At our office, we know the ins and outs of child support, and we are here to offer Fort Collins parents the straightforward – but compassionate – representation they need. If you are the parent of a minor child and have questions about establishing, modifying or challenging child support, be sure to reach out to us right away.
Getting Started with Child Support
Child support guidelines are determined by Colorado statute. Oftentimes, child support order is entered concurrently with a divorce and custody order. However, parents may also file to establish child support as its own proceeding without requesting the court enter orders on other matters.
Colorado’s child support guidelines take several factors into consideration, which are entered into a formula to determine an appropriate child support payment amount. These factors can include any of the following:
- The financial needs and resources of the non-custodial parent (e.g., income levels, expenses, etc.)
- The child’s current standard of living
- The financial needs and resources of the custodial parent
- The child’s educational costs
- Unique needs of the child, including medical expenses
Once the formula determines the correct child support amount, the court will enter this into a formal order which the parties must continue to follow until the child reaches age 18.
Modifying Child Support
In some cases, it may be possible to modify the child support order to better reflect the parties’ current situation. For instance, if a job loss or significant economic hardship make it too difficult for the payor to continue with the monthly payments, we can help petition the court to modify the monthly required payment to something more manageable. Likewise, if the financial situation of the custodial parent and/or child are such that a large child support monthly payment is no longer needed, a modification may be an option.
Other Child Support Matters
At our Fort Collins office, we can help clients with a number of child support issues beyond the establishment and modification of support. For instance, if it appears it may be necessary to extend a child support order beyond age 18 to help offset the costs of post-secondary education, we can assist in this process. Likewise, our office routinely counsels clients seeking to recoup child support arrears from a parent that has not honored the child support order for a significant period of time.
Contact Our Fort Collins Office Today
If you have questions about child support or would like advice on how to handle your current child support situation, don’t hesitate – reach out to us today.
To schedule a consultation with Fort Collins Family & Criminal Law Services, call 970-492-0222 today!