You are getting ready to go through the divorce process in Colorado. After looking at all the information, you can find you have some concerns, particularly about how much child support you can get. Your spouse has a significant income, and your children have grown accustomed to a certain lifestyle and participate in a lot of extracurriculars that you will not be able to afford with just the standard child support amount offered. This leaves you wondering, “Am I entitled to receive more than the standard?”
Every state has a standard calculation for child support. This does not mean that this standard is all you are able to collect. It is possible to ask for more under certain circumstances.
What is the standard calculation in Colorado?
Under the current state laws, each parent carries some level of responsibility when it comes to financially providing for their children. The court calculates child support based on the combined incomes of each parent and breaks down as follows:
- One child, support is 20 percent of combined income
- Two children, support is 30 percent of combined income
- Three children, support is 40 percent of combined income
This pattern just continues. For each child after the first, the support amount goes up 10 percent.
If you make less than your spouse or end up having primary physical custody, it may seem unfair that you have to provide an equal share of child support. The court will take that into consideration and may choose to adjust the child support amount your spouse pays you accordingly. Other factors that require review before the issuing of a support order include:
- Retirement account totals
- Custody arrangements
- Special needs of a child
- Who is providing insurance
Of course, the court will also look at the standard of living the children enjoyed during your marriage. Children should not have to stop doing everything they love because their parents choose to call it quits. The court may require the higher-earning spouse to provide extra support for educational expenses and extracurricular activities — among other things.
How to get it
If you wish to receive more than the standard amount of child support, there are two ways to go about it. You can either work out an agreement with you soon-to-be ex, or you can take the matter to court and let a judge decide. If it goes to court, it is a matter of submitting a request with any documentation that supports your request. Either way, legal counsel can help you in your quest of achieving a child support order that truly provides for your children’s needs.