Child Support: What It’s For

Child support is money paid by one parent to the other for the provision of financial support for a mutual child or children. Generally, the money is paid by the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent to offset the cost burden of the child. However, in the state of Colorado, rarely is sole custody awarded to one parent or the other, and joint custody is the preferred option unless one parent does not want custody or is legally declared an unfit parent. For that reason, both parents generally pay each other or the amount each parent would pay to the other washes out. Join me in today’s post as we discuss child support, what it’s for, and what it’s not.

At the Law Offices of Kelli J. Malcolm, I am Arapahoe and Dounglas County’s trusted family law attorney. I offer insight and support for families facing issues such as divorce and child custody. For the answers to all your questions or a complimentary consultation, reach out to me today.

The Intended Purpose of Child Support

The purpose of child support is so that the parents split the financial responsibility associated with raising the child. Child support funds should be used for clothing, shelter, food, medical expenses, school expenses, toys, books, basic goods, and extracurricular activities — whatever both parents would be paying for mutually had they not separated. It is important to know that child support is dependent on a mutual child, regardless of marital status. Child support amounts may change over time depending on parental income and the child’s needs.

What Child Support Is Not For

Child support is not, under any circumstances, for the purposes of parental support. It is not alimony and should not be used for the receiving parent’s personal needs that are unrelated to the rearing of the child. Misuse of funds includes things like purchasing clothing, personal care items or services, or furniture. Where there is a gray line is in regards to entertainment or vacations that include the child. Child support funds may be used for the child’s portion of the events, but should not be used for other members of the family. Child support should not be used for family members other than the child or children for which it is intended. Stepchildren should be supported by the new parental structures.

At the Law Offices of Kelli J. Malcolm, I am an experienced family lawyer that can help you and your family navigate the complex child support laws of Colorado and negotiate terms that are in the best interest of your child(ren). Once the terms of your child support are established, I can help with modifications, reallocation of funds, and any other child custody or child support concerns you may have. Connect with me to discuss all of your options during a consultation.