In simple terms, child support is an ongoing, periodic payment made for
the benefit of a child following a divorce or separation, usually made
from the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent. Colorado follows
the “Income Shares Model” of support which estimates the total
support amount that parents would spend on children in an intact family
unit and splits the financial responsibility between the parents in proportion
to their monthly incomes. While the guidelines are considerably complex
and detailed, there are certain general principles which apply to most
In Colorado, child support is calculated with consideration of the following factors:
Each parent’s gross income: “Gross income” refers to most types of earned and unearned
income, including wages, salaries, tips, bonuses, overtime, pensions,
unemployment benefits, workers’ compensation benefits, and Social Security.
Adjustments to gross income: Parents who receive alimony must add the amount received to their gross
income, while paying parents similarly deduct this amount. Likewise, parents
can deduct up to 75% of support payments received for natural or adopted
children of other relationships living in the household.
Additional expenses: Once basic support obligations have been calculated, parents are given
the opportunity to add certain predictable and recurring expenses of work-related
child care, the cost of adding a child to a health insurance policy, up
to $250 of annual uninsured health care expenses per child, and any additional
court-ordered expenses. These expenses are shared by the parents in proportion
to their incomes.
Imputed income: In the event that a judge finds that a parent is voluntarily unemployed
or underemployed, he or she may estimate their potential earning capacity
with consideration given to their work history, training, education, and
available jobs in the area.
Child support obligations continue until a child’s 18th birthday, or until their 19th birthday if they are still attending high school full-time. While child
support obligations are enforceable by law, they may be modified in the
event that a considerable change in circumstances should present itself
from the time the order was first issued.
Child Support Lawyer in Denver
If you are involved in any sort of child-support related dispute, the Denver
family lawyers at Jones Law Firm, PC can provide the strong legal guidance
you need to pursue a fair solution and ensure your and your child’s
rights are protected.
To find out more about how we can assist you, we invite you to contact
our firm online or call us today at (888) 850-9851.