Child support is a crucial part of divorce proceedings, especially when children are involved. It is a legal obligation for non-custodial parents to provide financial support for their children's well-being. In Denver, Colorado, child support is determined based on the income of both parents and the needs of the child. However, circumstances can change over time, and the original child support order may no longer be suitable.
This raises the question: Can child support be modified in Denver, Colorado?
The Basics of Child Support in DenverBefore discussing modification, it is important to understand the basics of child support in Denver. Child support is calculated using a formula that takes into account both parents' gross income and the number of children they have together. The court also considers other factors such as health insurance costs, daycare expenses, and any special needs of the child. In Denver, child support payments are typically made until the child turns 19 years old or graduates from high school, whichever comes first. However, if the child has special needs or is still in high school at 19 years old, child support may continue until they turn 21. It is worth noting that child support payments are not tax-deductible for the paying parent and are not considered taxable income for the receiving parent.
When Can Child Support Be Modified?Child support orders are not set in stone and can be modified under certain circumstances.
In Denver, Colorado, there are two main reasons why child support may be modified: a substantial change in circumstances or a significant deviation from the state's child support guidelines. A substantial change in circumstances refers to a significant change in either parent's financial situation or the child's needs. For example, if the paying parent loses their job or receives a significant increase in income, this could be considered a substantial change in circumstances. Similarly, if the child's needs change, such as requiring expensive medical treatment, this could also warrant a modification of child support. A significant deviation from the state's child support guidelines means that the current child support order deviates by more than 10% from what would be calculated using the state's guidelines. This could happen if there is a significant change in either parent's income or if there are new expenses that were not considered in the original order.
The Process of Modifying Child Support in DenverIf you believe that your child support order needs to be modified, you can file a motion with the court to request a modification.
The court will then review your case and determine whether there has been a substantial change in circumstances or a significant deviation from the state's guidelines. It is essential to note that you cannot simply stop making child support payments or pay less than the court-ordered amount without going through the proper legal channels. Failure to pay child support can result in serious consequences, including wage garnishment, suspension of driver's license, and even jail time. Once you have filed a motion for modification, both parents will be required to provide updated financial information to the court. This includes income statements, tax returns, and any other relevant financial documents. The court will then use this information to recalculate child support payments based on the current guidelines. If both parents agree on the proposed modification, they can submit a written agreement to the court for approval.
However, if there is a disagreement, a hearing will be scheduled where both parties can present their arguments and evidence. The court will then make a decision based on what is in the best interest of the child.
Seeking Legal AssistanceModifying child support can be a complex and emotionally charged process. It is always advisable to seek the guidance of an experienced family law attorney who can help you navigate the legal system and ensure that your rights are protected. Additionally, if you are facing financial difficulties and are unable to make child support payments, it is crucial to seek legal assistance as soon as possible. An attorney can help you file a motion for modification and present your case to the court.
In ConclusionChild support in Denver, Colorado can be modified under certain circumstances.
A substantial change in circumstances or a significant deviation from the state's guidelines may warrant a modification of child support. However, it is essential to follow the proper legal process and seek the assistance of an experienced attorney to ensure that your rights are protected.