Frequently Asked Questions

Income Witholding

Payment Questions

Other Questions


Q1: Why must support be taken out of my pay?

A1: Federal and state laws require that support payments be withheld from your income. This is true even if you have never been behind in your payments.

Q2: What happens if I don�t make enough money each month to pay my child support?

A2: Amounts not paid become past due. Past due amounts can be collected in many ways. Under Colorado law, your employer cannot withhold more than 65% of your net income (after certain deductions) for child support. However, the standard amount deducted in El Paso County is 55% of net income.

Q3: The noncustodial parent is paid weekly (or biweekly) and the court order is for monthly support. How are payments handled through income withholding orders sent to employers to ensure that the full amount of current support is taken out?

A3: Parents who are paid weekly or biweekly may be under an income withholding order that tells the employer to take out some extra if the parent is paid weekly or biweekly (every two weeks or 26 times per year). This extra amount is to make up the difference in current support to meet the monthly amount set in the court order.

During the two or three months each year when the noncustodial parent receives an extra pay check, the extra withheld money can be applied to arrearages if owed. If there are no arrearages in the case and the current support is fully paid, the money will be returned to the noncustodial parent.

This "extra" rule does not apply to semi-monthly and monthly pay cycles, as the child support is taken out twice at 50% of the monthly amount or once at 100% of the monthly amount.

Q4: What happens when payments are received at the Family Support Registry (FSR): 1) after the month in which they were due; or, 2) before the month in which they were due?

A4: . If a payment is received by the FSR on or after the 1st day of the month after the payment was due, it is treated as a payment for the next month and applied to the current support for the next month.

If payments are received by the FSR before the month in which the payment was due, it will be credited to the month before, but could possibly count as a prepayment for the month in which it was actually due if the earlier month's current support amount due was fully satisfied. Support owed to the family is disbursed to the family the same day it is allocated and marked "prepay;" however, if the payment is for TANF reimbursement, it is put on hold and then disbursed as current support in the month for which it was intended.

The Defense Finance and Accounting Services (DFAS), which handles active and retired military pay and some other federal pay, and Social Security Administration are exceptions, and payments received before the month in which the payments are due are treated as payments for the month in which they were due. So, if the 1st of the month falls on the weekend, and a noncustodial parent service member receives his/her pay from DFAS on Friday the 30th, the child support withheld will be credited for the month beginning on the 1st. (Note that this applies to electronic DFAS payments only and not for mailed payments.)

Q5: Where do I send support payments that I make on my own?

A5: Making Payments by Check or Money Order

  • Make all payments payable to the "Family Support Registry."
  • Do not send cash
  • You must include the following information with all payments
    • Your FSR account number
    • The name of the individual who owes support
    • Your court case number
    • Amount remitted for each FSR account number
  • Enclose your coupon with each payment
  • Mail Payments to:
    Family Support Registry
    P.O. Box 2171
    Denver, CO 80201-2171
  • Overnight Express payments can be sent to:
    Family Support Registry
    PMB 262
    1550 Larimer Street
    Denver, CO 80202-1610

Q6: How can I get credit for money paid directly to the custodial parent?

A6: Unless a judge gives you credit, direct payments are legally considered a gift. Paying through the Family Support Registry ensures that you receive credit for any payments made.

Q7: What happens if I pay too much through income withholding?

A7: If you owe past due child support, your employer will be required to withhold more than your current order amount. The difference will be used to help pay off the debt. If you do not owe past due child support, and feel that too much money is being withheld from your check, contact El Paso County Child Support Services locally at (719) 457-6331 or toll free at (866) 270-2606. El Paso County Child Support Services may be able to ask your employer to lower the amount being withheld, or submit your order for modification or termination as applicable.

Q8: What if I disagree with the balance Child Support Services shows?

A8: Ask for a payment record (print out of the payment history) and review the record. If you have questions, you may contact the record keeper for your account. You may ask to have your case validated as well.

Q9: How can I get my child support amount changed?

A9: You may call El Paso county Child Support Services to request that your case be reviewed for a modification at (719) 457-6331 or toll free at (866) 270-2606. You may also visit your local child support office or contact a private attorney.

Q10: How can I enroll my children in my health insurance plan?

A10: Confer with your employer. Ask what information you will need in order to enroll your children. Federal and state laws say that children can be added to your policy at any time, even after open enrollment periods have passed

Q11: Whom do I contact if federal or state taxes have been intercepted?

A11: Contact El Paso County Child Support Services to answer your tax intercept questions.

Q12: How are child support guidelines calculated to determine support?

A12: Colorado uses the "income shares model", which includes both parents' income information to calculate the child support obligation. To compute Colorado child support guidelines, several worksheets and a chart are used. Please see the "Resources" page to do this calculation.

Have other questions about child support?

Contact your private attorney, call El Paso County Child Support Services locally at (719) 457-6331, toll free at (866) 270-2606, or visit us at Citizens Service Center, 1675 Garden of the Gods Road, Suite 1107, Colorado Springs, CO. 80907. Our email address is

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