Child Expenses

Child Support: Why So Extra about Extra-Ordinary Expenses?

Child Support: Why So Extra about Extra-Ordinary Expenses?

Child support in Colorado family law cases has long been calculated off formulas that attempt to distribute basic child-related monthly costs as if parents were still living in the same household. Parents in divorce, legal separation, juvenile or parental responsibilities (custody) cases use state-approved Child Support Worksheets, inputting the number of overnights spent with each parent, each parent’s monthly income before taxes, costs for parents’ work or education-related childcare, insurance premiums for the children and other agreed-upon or court-ordered expenses. The philosophy behind this streamlined approach is to ensure consistent and fair support orders across the state for children’s ordinary needs. The result of the formulas is a legal presumption, and courts must make specific findings to justify deviations from the Worksheet’s recommended amount. The…