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Paying for items not included in child support

Colorado parents who are in the middle of divorcing may not realize that there are many things that child support does not pay for. The court may not mandate payments for a number of things that it considers extra. As a result, parents might want to negotiate these items as part of their parenting agreement.

What these items are depends on the age of the child among other things. Younger children may need after school or day care. Items such as yearbooks and school photos, music and other lessons, tutoring and sports-related fees may not be included as part of child support. This could cause some tension as the custodial parent struggles to pay for these extra items.

Costs may continue when children are older than 18 as well. Divorcing parents might want to think about how to pay for the child's college education and whether they might contribute to things such as the child's wedding or first car.

If children are older, it may be easier to anticipate their future needs for the purposes of support. For example, if the child is 17 and close to finishing high school, parents might include language in their parenting agreement that outlines how to pay for college expenses. However, if the children are very young, it may be more difficult to anticipate what their interests may be as they are growing up. Parents might want to write more flexibility into the parenting agreement in a case like this rather than designating funds specifically for an activity that may not interest the child. With the assistance of their respective attorneys, parents might also want to create a blueprint for resolving conflict so that they do not have to go back to family law court for relatively minor issues.

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Cooper, Tanis & Armas, P.C.
42 Garden Center
Broomfield, CO 80020