Colorado Child Support Worksheets
Colorado Child Support Worksheets (Video)
Child Support Worksheets - Scrollable Video Transcript
Hi Everyone. In this video I’m gong to look at several Colorado Child Support Worksheets and show how different factors affect the child support amount. Child support worksheets are important, because they are used to determine the child support amount in Colorado. These worksheets are generated by child support software.
So let’s take a look at our first example. Here, we have the parents John and Jane Doe who have 2 kids Kate and Kyle.
Now this worksheet shows many factors which can affect child support, but only a few are relevant in this example. As you can see Mom makes 4k a month and Dad makes 8k a month, and gross income rather than net income is used in the worksheets. So together, the parents have 12k of gross income. The Mom’s share of that is a third and the Dad’s share is two thirds. Now the software knows what the guideline amount is for 2 kids when the parents together make 12k a month. And it shows that amount right here in line 4 - $2,076. This means that Colorado has determined that all things being equal it takes about $2,076 a month to raise two kids. Whether you agree with that or not is a different matter.
So why on earth in the next line, does the support amount go up to $3,114 to take care of these kids? Well, that’s because no parent has less than 93 overnights a year with the kids, which is a special threshold number. If both parents have at least 93 overnights a year, then they are considered to have shared parenting time which generates a Worksheet B rather than a Worksheet A. A worksheet A applies when a parent has less than 93 overnights a year.
So we are using a Worksheet B, and when a Worksheet B is used, meaning the parents have shared parenting time, then the $2,076 is multiplied by 1.5, which results in $3,114. OK? But why was this multiplied? Well, that’s because our lawmakers in the support guidelines figured that a lot of the expenses for the kids are going to be duplicated when the parents have shared parenting time. So both parents are going to be buying clothes, toiletries, food, entertainment, equipment, etc for the kids in their respective households. Because of this, it’s actually costing more to support the kids when you add both parent's expenses together because of the duplication. So the total support to raise these kids is more, 1.5 times more, according to the powers that be. And that’s how we get to $3,114 a month to support these kids.
The kids enjoy 50/50 parenting time with their parents. Now you’ll see here that it looks like one parent doesn’t quite have 50% of the time. Well, that’s because there are an odd number of days in the year (365) so we just give one parent 182 overnights and the other 183 overnights and it doesn’t make that much difference. As discussed in another video of mine concerning Colorado child support in general, Colorado uses the number of overnights with each parent as an important factor in determining child support.
So, based on that, Mom with her share of the total income and parenting time would owe Dad $517.53 a month in child support. Dad, based on his share of the total income and parenting time would owe Mom $1,040.89. The difference between them is that Dad owes Mom $523.36 which would be the recommended child support order under these circumstances.
So here we have the same worksheet with one exception. Dad is paying $200 a month for health insurance. But his child support obligation did not go down $200 from before. If it did, it would be $523.36 minus $200 which would be $323.36. However, Dad needs to pay $456.70 here. So, by paying the children’s health insurance here, Dad is paying more out of pocket. He is now paying $656.70. This is the same amount he would pay to Mom for child support if she were paying $200 a month for the children’s health insurance. See how this works?
Here’s an example with Mom getting $600 a month in spousal maintenance which is added to her income under the support guidelines. However, an additional 25% is added on to reflect the fact that spousal maintenance is no longer taxed. It is tax free. The child support obligation is now $328.75.
As mentioned earlier, a Worksheet A is used when one party has less than 93 overnights a year. Whether that is zero or 92 overnights – the amount of child support will be the same. Here, keeping with our example, the support amount will be $1,384.07 payable to Mom where Dad has less than 93 overnights. If Dad gets one more overnight bringing the total to 93, then a worksheet B is used, and the support amount drops to $1,282.67 and continues to change with each additional overnight. I hope this video was useful and thank you for watching.