When couples with children divorce, so much time and effort frequently goes into determining the amount of financial support a child will need and which parent will pay how much. Because this period leading up to a court's order for child support is so often the subject of focus, let's take a moment to look at just what happens after child support is awarded. In day-to-day life here in El Paso County, how are child support payments made and received?
Anyone who has had a child understands that it is expensive to raise kids. As a child ages, their needs and wants change. This can significantly alter how much parents spend on a child each year. When parents in Colorado and elsewhere divorce, these financial needs to not change for the child. However, divorced parents need to carefully assess and address the issue of child support.
One question heard often is: what exactly does child support cover? If you are experiencing issues relevant to child support, then you will want to know the limits of child support, how it can change, the difficulty of changing or modifying it, and its duration. It is very important to get child support right, because it is, after all, meant to maintain the child's wellbeing, as well as look out for the child's best interests. Courts are usually only concerned with the best interests of the child, and thus, the courts will examine a number of different costs and needs that will support the growth and maturity of the child.
Every day, children are born to Colorado parents, and the families those children enter can have very unique characteristics. Some families are led by married parents, and some families may include two parents who have chosen not to wed. In some instances, children may be born to single mothers who are not involved with their kids' fathers, and in other instances their mothers may know who their children's dads are and may struggle to convince those men of their roles as fathers.
Colorado parents usually hope that their children will find successful careers as they transition into adulthood, either after they complete high school, or upon finishing courses in higher education. Not every child chooses to pursue a degree at a college or university but those that do understand that the costs associated with such pursuits can be astronomical. Many children look to their parents for financial support when it comes to following their educational dreams.
When parents cannot work together and make agreements about the family law matters that affect their property and children, the courts will step in, and, after considering the relevant facts, will make decisions about the care and disposition of these matters. Colorado parents who can see eye-to-eye on matters related to child support can, however, work through their attorneys to create child support agreements that will dictate the terms of financial support for their kids.
When a Colorado parent is granted sole physical custody of their child, it is common for the non-custodial parent to be required to pay child support for the benefit and care of the child. It is generally expected that the parent with whom the child resides will also financially contribute to the maintenance and welfare of the child. As such, child support is used to provide the child with the basics they need to grow and thrive, following their parents' separation or divorce.
Recently, this Colorado Springs divorce and family law blog discussed gray divorce and the impact that the end of a marriage can have on individuals who separate later in life. While gray divorces are by no means easy, individuals who choose to end their relationships when they are younger and have children at home can face additional challenges, when compared to those whose divorce-related concerns are primarily financial. One of the biggest issues parents must come to terms with when they end their marriages is child support and how they will financially support their children.
A court order or court-approved agreement regarding the financial support of a child carries with it important rights and obligations that bind the parties to it to perform certain tasks. For example, in the case of a Colorado child support order, one parent may be bound to pay support to the other parent for the maintenance and care of their shared offspring.
Child support plays an integral role in providing for a child's best interests. When a child's parents are divorced or unmarried, generally the child lives primarily with one parent while having visitation time with the other. However, the noncustodial parent is generally not relieved of their financial responsibility to their child, and in El Paso County parents may be required to pay child support to help their children.