Are you wondering if your child support order is modifiable?
Meaning, do you have to file a motion to get it modified? Or can you and your ex just agree on modifying the amount? Hi, I’m Marie Drake of The Drake Law Firm, and today, I’m going to talk to you about modifying child support.
First, I’m going to talk to you about how child support is calculated in Colorado. And the way it’s calculated is the court takes the party’s gross income, each party’s gross income, plus the number of overnights that the child or children spend with each parent. And whether or not there’s any other expenses, such as health insurance premiums paid by one parent for the children or day care paid by another parent for the children.
You might be wondering what it means to modify child support, what is a child support modification? Well, in short, what it means is that if you are paying Tommy’s mother $1000 a month in child support, and you get a big fat raise and double your income, that modification needs to happen because the child support amount of the statute will have changed more than 10%, meaning more than $100, 10% of $1000. That’s a modification.
The next thing I’m going talk about is the magic language needed for a child support modification. And that magic language is is there a substantial and continuing change going on that increases the expenses or decreases the expenses regarding the child or children? For example, if little Tommy needs counseling and that’s going to be an extra $250 a month, will that cause the calculation to go up more than 10%? If so, and your ex isn’t cooperating and getting little Tommy counseling, you might have to file a motion to modify in order for the court to agree to that change in the amount.
Now, how long will it take to modify child support?
Well, that depends. If you two don’t agree to modify it, then you’ll have to file a motion and your ex will get 21 days to respond. And then if it’s necessary, you can reply to that response within 7 days, and then the court will decide as long as they have the appropriate information in front of them. And what that means is the appropriate financial information proving that there needs to be this modification. But you can dispense with all of that if you two simply agree to the modification. If you agree to the modification, then you can just file what’s called a stipulation, an agreement to modify the child support, send it into the court, and the court invariably approves it.
If you have any questions at all regarding child support and modifying child support, give us a call here at The Drake Law Firm. We’re happy to answer your questions.
And remember, you don’t have to use the attorney that you initially used in your divorce.
You can call someone new and we’re standing by if you’d like to call us.