Denver Child Support

When it comes to child support Denver Colorado, your child and your finances are both going to be impacted now and for the foreseeable future. In general terms, child is an amount paid by one parent to the other to cover the costs of raising a child. Denver support orders may also include education expenses, medical expenses and daycare costs.

A child support order needs to be reasonable and fair yet still meet the needs of the child it is intended for. Before you begin the process of child support calculation, learn more about the topic so you are prepared. Additionally, you should speak to an experienced Denver child support attorney as soon as possible. Child support cases can become complicated quickly, especially when high incomes are involved, so having legal representation can make a real difference in your case.

Child support determination

The gross, or pre-tax, incomes of both parents is where the basic child support calculation starts in Colorado. The court will look at pay stubs, retirement accounts, Social Security, investments and more. All of these financial figures are added together to get a total income for both parents, and the basic child support amount is determined by the percentage of parenting time allocated to each parent in the parenting plan. Once the court has an accurate picture of the parents’ incomes, other factors are considered before the final support amount is determined, such as medical insurance and daycare costs, child support paid for other children, and extraordinary expenses.

Child support calculation can become complex for a lot of reasons. If, for example, one parent is self-employed, the court must examine what the business expenses, losses and profits truly are. If one parent is under-employed, the court may estimate income if it is believed that parent took the job to get around child support obligations. A Denver child support lawyer can help ensure all the information presented in your child support case is complete and accurate, which will help you receive a fair and reasonable order.

Evenly split parenting time

Even if parenting time is split 50/50 between both parents, the non-primary care parent may still have to pay a support amount to the primary care parent. While the percentage of time the child spends with each parent is a factor in child support, so are incomes and other financial factors. If one parent makes $100,000 and the other makes $500,000, for example, the support order will reflect that income disparity. If both parents have similar incomes but one parent is paying far more child-related costs than the other, that will affect the support amount as well.

It is important to note than the court may accept an agreement you came to with the other parent regarding child support as long as you have an acceptable reason for doing so and it doesn’t stray too far from the guidelines regarding support in state laws. For example, if the guidelines state one parent should pay $1,000 each month in support but he or she is paying $2,500 each month for private school tuition and the parties decide to forgo support, the court may allow it in that case. Contact The Burnham Law Firm for help with your child support case today.

Child support modification

A child support order can be modified after it has been entered as long as there is a change in circumstances that calls for a modification. A shift in a parent’s financial situation that would change the support amount by more than 10 percent or a parent’s request to add medical insurance costs to the order, for example, are considered acceptable reasons for modification. Reasons for modification vary but often include a permanent and significant change in one parent’s income, the end of daycare costs and when a child moves in with the parent who is paying support.

It is important to file for modification as soon as it’s clear the circumstances have changed for the foreseeable future. A modification can take time, and the new amount will only go back to the date you filed the modification paperwork, not when your personal circumstances changed. You could end up owing or overpaying support for months if you don’t file for a modification in a timely manner.

Private school considerations

Colorado law does not allow one parent to force the other parent to pay part or all private school tuition as it presumes the standard, which is public school. If you have joint legal custody with the other parent, he or she also has the right to veto private school. However, if the parents agree or have substantial resources and the court views the private school as being in the child’s best interests, the court may make the private school tuition part of the support order. If the tuition is considered an extraordinary cost, it may affect the final support amount.

Contact The Burnham Law Firm about your case today. Your support order should reflect your child’s needs and the true financial situations of everyone involved, and your attorney can help ensure that is the case.