Figuring income in child support cases can be complicated

Even though Colorado has standard child support guidelines which are supposed to make child support orders predictable and fair, they do not always make figuring child support easy.

For example, many Colorado residents will have some special situation that makes calculating their income more difficult than just referring to a recent paycheck.

For child support purposes, income will include just about anything which will result in monetary gain or a reduction in expenses.

In addition to items like salaries, bonuses, tips and the like, it also includes retirement payments, profits from self-employment, and the like.

Income can even include items that may not appear on a person’s tax returns, like gifts, certain business deductions and certain fringe benefits.

Not everything is considered income for purposes of calculating child support. For instance, many forms of public assistance do not count as income.

Those who take on a second job may also be able to exclude money from that job as income if they are already employed full time. Likewise, depending on the circumstances, a Broomfield resident may be able to exclude overtime income.

Each parent’s income plays an important role in the court’s child support calculation, as income gets heavy consideration under Colorado’s guidelines.

Therefore, when either parent is self-employed or receives income from sources besides employment, it will be important for the other parent to investigate thoroughly to make sure he or she has an accurate idea of income.

Moreover, there may even be legal arguments over whether a parent’s income should count for child support purposes. It may be important for a person to have the assistance of a legal professional if he or she is facing a child support dispute.