The goal of child support services in Colorado is to assure that children receive the financial support that they are entitled to from both parents. To accomplish this goal, systems and procedures have been set up through the Colorado Division of Child Support Services to make and receive child support payments. Colorado's Child Support Services is authorized to:
- Establish orders for both payments and medical support
- Establish paternity
- Modify support orders
- Process payments
- Collect past due payments
Once a Child Support Order Has Been Issued
Child support payments are made through the Family Support Registry (FSR). You have to register for an FSR number, which you can do online or at the local county offices. Once you have this number you will be able to make payments using one of the payment methods listed below.
Colorado Child Support Payments at a Glance
Below is a quick and easy reference guide to paying and receiving child support. The relevant statutes have been provided and summarized in easy to understand language.
Colorado Revised Statutes:
- Section 14-10-115 (Establishing basic child support obligations)
- Section 14-10-117 (Payment of child support)
- Section 14-14-111.5 (Enforcement and withholding income for support)
Coverage of Child Support Payments
Both parents have a duty to support their child by making reasonable or necessary payments for the child's support, which may include payments for:
- Medical insurance; and
- Medical expenses.
Paying Child Support
Starting a Case
Before one parent may receive child support from the other parent, there are certain preliminary steps they must take. These steps include:
- Contacting Child Support Enforcement to start a child support case ($20 application fee)
- Establishing paternity
- Obtaining a child support order
- Providing proper legal notice to the parent who will be paying support
The court will assess the non-custodial parent's finances to establish the amount of support. The amount ordered for support will depend on the needs of the children and the finances of both parents.
Annual Fee Required for Child Support Payments
State and federal law require the person receiving child support payments to pay an annual $25 fee in cases where:
- They have never received public assistance; and
- They have received at least $500 in support payment in the current year.
In order to make a payment, you will need:
- FSR account number;
- Your name; and
- The amount to remit for each FSR account.
The following are ways you can pay child support in Colorado:
- Income withholding directly from your employment check
- Smart E-Pay: Online payments using your bank account for one-time or recurring payments
- Pay-by-Phone: Call 1-303-299-9123 or 1-800-374-6558
- Credit Card Payments: Pay Colorado child support online using your credit card
- Mail a Payment: Send checks or money orders. Make checks out to 'Family Support Registry' and include your FSR number. Mail the checks to Family Support Registry, P.O. Box 2171, Denver, CO 80201-2171
- PayNearMe: Cash payments at 7-Elevens ($1.99 service fee)
- Money Gram: Cash payments at Money Gram locations
The child support payments are processed the same business day they are received. Generally, the funds become available to the other party within two business days.
The FSR can provide a legal record of all payments made or received. You need to have an FSR account to use this service.
Collecting Child Support Payments
In order to receive payments, you need an FSR account number. Keep your address and phone number current.
- Default payment method: You'll receive a check at the address on file
- Direct deposit: No fee for disbursement deposited directly into your bank account
Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
Colorado Child Support Payments: Related Resources
Need Help Paying or Collecting Child Support? Seek Legal Advice.
A lot of issues can prevent the payment or receipt of child support. For example, the other parent may have moved out of state or there may have been a change in income that the support payments were based on. Whatever the issue is, you may need a lawyer to help you get child support or to modify an existing order. Seek help from a Colorado lawyer who specializes in family law issues.