The Colorado Child Support Guidelines were modified during the 2013 legislative session.  The Guidelines set forth below are effective 1/1/2014.  The changes from the prior statute are indicated in red.


C.R.S. § 14-10-115. Child support guidelines - purpose - definitions - determination of income - schedule of basic child support obligations - adjustments to basic child support - additional guidelines - child support commission.

(1) Purpose and applicability.

(a) The child support guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations have the following purposes:

(I) To establish as state policy an adequate standard of support for children, subject to the ability of parents to pay;

(II) To make awards more equitable by ensuring more consistent treatment of persons in similar circumstances; and

(III) To improve the efficiency of the court process by promoting settlements and giving courts and the parties guidance in establishing levels of awards.

(b) The child support guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations do the following:

(I) Calculate child support based upon the parents' combined adjusted gross income estimated to have been allocated to the child if the parents and children were living in an intact household;

(II) Adjust the child support based upon the needs of the children for extraordinary medical expenses and work-related child care costs; and

(III) Allocate the amount of child support to be paid by each parent based upon physical care arrangements.

(c) This section shall apply to all child support obligations, established or modified, as a part of any proceeding, including, but not limited to, articles 5, 6, and 10 of this title and articles 4 and 6 of title 19, C.R.S., regardless of when filed.

(2) Duty of support - factors to consider.

(a) In a proceeding for dissolution of marriage, legal separation, maintenance, or child support, the court may order either or both parents owing a duty of support to a child of the marriage to pay an amount reasonable or necessary for the child's support and may order an amount determined to be reasonable under the circumstances for a time period that occurred after the date of the parties' physical separation or the filing of the petition or service upon the respondent, whichever date is latest, and prior to the entry of the support order, without regard to marital misconduct.

(b) In determining the amount of support under this subsection (2), the court shall consider all relevant factors, including:

(I) The financial resources of the child;

(II) The financial resources of the custodial parent;

(III) The standard of living the child would have enjoyed had the marriage not been dissolved;

(IV) The physical and emotional condition of the child and his or her educational needs; and

(V) The financial resources and needs of the noncustodial parent.

(3) Definitions. As used in this section, unless the context otherwise requires:

(a) "Adjusted gross income" means gross income, as specified in subsection (5) of this section, less preexisting child support obligations and less alimony or maintenance actually paid by a parent.

(b) "Combined gross income" means the combined monthly adjusted gross incomes of both parents.

(c) "Income" means the actual gross income of a parent, if employed to full capacity, or potential income, if unemployed or underemployed. Gross income of each parent shall be determined according to subsection (5) of this section.

(d) "Number of children due support", as used in the schedule of basic child support obligations specified in subsection (7) of this section, means children for whom the parents share joint legal responsibility and for whom support is being sought.

(e) "Other children" means children who are not the subject of the child support determination at issue.

(f) "Postsecondary education" includes college and vocational education programs.

(g) "Postsecondary education support" means support for the following expenses associated with attending a college, university, or vocational education program: Tuition, books, and fees.

(h) "Shared physical care", for the purposes of the child support guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations specified in this section, and as further specified in paragraph (b) of subsection (8) of this section, means that each parent keeps the children overnight for more than ninety-two overnights each year and that both parents contribute to the expenses of the children in addition to the payment of child support.

(i) "Split physical care", for the purposes of the child support guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations specified in this section, and as further specified in paragraph (c) of subsection (8) of this section, means that each parent has physical care of at least one of the children by means of that child or children residing with that parent the majority of the time.

(4) Forms - identifying information.

(a) The child support guidelines shall be used with standardized child support guideline forms to be issued by the judicial department. The judicial department is responsible for promulgating and updating the Colorado child support guideline forms, schedules, worksheets, and instructions.

(b) All child support orders entered pursuant to this article shall provide the names and dates of birth of the parties and of the children who are the subject of the order and the parties' residential and mailing addresses. The social security numbers of the parties and children shall be collected pursuant to section 14-14-113 and section 26-13-127, C.R.S.

(5) Determination of income.

(a) For the purposes of the child support guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations specified in this section, the gross income of each parent shall be determined according to the following guidelines:

(I) "Gross income" includes income from any source, except as otherwise provided in subparagraph (II) of this paragraph (a), and includes, but is not limited to:

(A) Income from salaries;

(B) Wages, including tips declared by the individual for purposes of reporting to the federal internal revenue service or tips imputed to bring the employee's gross earnings to the minimum wage for the number of hours worked, whichever is greater;

(C) Commissions;

(D) Payments received as an independent contractor for labor or services, which payments must be considered income from self-employment;

(E) Bonuses;

(F) Dividends;

(G) Severance pay;

(H) Pensions and retirement benefits, including but not limited to those paid pursuant to articles 51, 54, 54.5, and 54.6 of title 24, C.R.S., and article 30 of title 31, C.R.S.;

(I) Royalties;

(J) Rents;

(K) Interest;

(L) Trust income;

(M) Annuities;

(N) Capital gains;

(O) Any moneys drawn by a self-employed individual for personal use that are deducted as a business expense, which moneys must be considered income from self-employment;

(P) Social security benefits, including social security benefits actually received by a parent as a result of the disability of that parent or as the result of the death of the minor child's stepparent but not including social security benefits received by a minor child or on behalf of a minor child as a result of the death or disability of a stepparent of the child;

(Q) Workers' compensation benefits;

(R) Unemployment insurance benefits;

(S) Disability insurance benefits;

(T) Funds held in or payable from any health, accident, disability, or casualty insurance to the extent that such insurance replaces wages or provides income in lieu of wages;

(U) Monetary gifts;

(V) Monetary prizes, excluding lottery winnings not required by the rules of the Colorado lottery commission to be paid only at the lottery office;

(W) Income from from general partnerships, limited partnerships, closely held corporations, or limited liability companies.  However, if a parent is a passive investor, has a minority interest in the company, and does not have any managerial duties or input, then the income to be recognized may be limited to actual cash distributions received.

(X) Expense reimbursements or in-kind payments received by a parent in the course of employment, self-employment, or operation of a business if they are significant and reduce personal living expenses;

(Y) Alimony or maintenance received; and

(Z) Overtime pay, only if the overtime is required by the employer as a condition of employment.

(II) "Gross income" does not include:

(A) Child support payments received;

(B) Benefits received from means-tested public assistance programs, including but not limited to assistance provided under the Colorado works program, as described in part 7 of article 2 of title 26, C.R.S., supplemental security income, food stamps, and general assistance;

(C) Income from additional jobs that result in the employment of the obligor more than forty hours per week or more than what would otherwise be considered to be full-time employment; and

(D) Social security benefits received by the minor children, or on behalf of the minor children, as a result of the death or disability of a stepparent are not to be included as income for the minor children for the determination of child support.

(E)  Earnings or gains on a retirement account, including an IRA, which earnings or gains must not be included as income unless or until a parent takes a distribution from the account. If a distribution from a retirement account may be taken without being subject to an IRS penalty for early distribution and the parent decides not to take the distribution, the court may consider the distribution that could have been taken in determining the parent's gross income if the parent is not otherwise employed full-time and the retirement account was not received pursuant to the division of marital property.

(III)

(A) For income from self-employment, rent, royalties, proprietorship of a business, or joint ownership of a partnership or closely held corporation, "gross income" equals gross receipts minus ordinary and necessary expenses, as defined in sub-subparagraph (B) of this subparagraph (III), required to produce such income.

(B) "Ordinary and necessary expenses" does not include amounts allowable by the internal revenue service for the accelerated component of depreciation expenses or investment tax credits or any other business expenses determined by the court to be inappropriate for determining gross income for purposes of calculating child support.

(b)

(I) If a parent is voluntarily unemployed or underemployed, child support shall be calculated based on a determination of potential income; except that a determination of potential income shall not be made for a parent who is physically or mentally incapacitated or is caring for a child under the age of thirty months for whom the parents owe a joint legal responsibility or for an incarcerated parent sentenced to one year or more.

(II) If a noncustodial parent who owes past-due child support is unemployed and not incapacitated and has an obligation of support to a child receiving assistance pursuant to part 7 of article 2 of title 26, C.R.S., the court or delegate child support enforcement unit may order the parent to pay such support in accordance with a plan approved by the court or to participate in work activities. Work activities may include one or more of the following:

(A) Private or public sector employment;

(B) Job search activities;

(C) Community service;

(D) Vocational training; or

(E) Any other employment-related activities available to that particular individual.

(III) For the purposes of this section, a parent shall not be deemed "underemployed" if:

(A) The employment is temporary and is reasonably intended to result in higher income within the foreseeable future; or

(B) The employment is a good faith career choice that is not intended to deprive a child of support and does not unreasonably reduce the support available to a child; or

(C) The parent is enrolled in an educational program that is reasonably intended to result in a degree or certification within a reasonable period of time and that will result in a higher income, so long as the educational program is a good faith career choice that is not intended to deprive the child of support and that does not unreasonably reduce the support available to a child.

(c) Income statements of the parents shall be verified with documentation of both current and past earnings. Suitable documentation of current earnings includes pay stubs, employer statements, or receipts and expenses if self-employed. Documentation of current earnings shall be supplemented with copies of the most recent tax return to provide verification of earnings over a longer period. A copy of wage statements or other wage information obtained from the computer data base maintained by the department of labor and employment shall be admissible into evidence for purposes of determining income under this subsection (5).

(6) Adjustments to gross income.

(a) The amount of child support actually paid by a parent with an order for support of other children shall be deducted from that parent's gross income.

(b)

(I) At the time of the initial establishment of a child support order, or in any proceeding to modify a support order, if a parent is also legally responsible for the support of other children for whom the parents do not share joint legal responsibility, an adjustment shall be made revising the parent's income prior to calculating the basic child support obligation for the children who are the subject of the support order if the children are living in the home of the parent seeking the adjustment or if the children are living out of the home, and the parent seeking the adjustment provides documented proof of money payments of support of those children. The amount shall not exceed the schedule of basic support obligations listed in this section. For a parent with a gross income of one thousand nine hundred dollars or less per month, the adjustment shall be seventy-five percent of the amount calculated using the low-income adjustment described in sub-subparagraphs (B) and (C) of subparagraph (II) of paragraph (a) of subsection (7) of this section based only upon the responsible parent's income, without any other adjustments for the number of other children for whom the parent is responsible. For a parent with gross income of more than one thousand nine hundred dollars per month, the adjustment shall be seventy-five percent of the amount listed under the schedule of basic support obligations in paragraph (b) of subsection (7) of this section that would represent a support obligation based only upon the responsible parent's income, without any other adjustments for the number of other children for whom the parent is responsible. The amount calculated as set forth in this subparagraph (I) shall be subtracted from the amount of the parent's gross income prior to calculating the basic support obligation based upon both parents' gross income, as provided in subsection (7) of this section.

(II) The adjustment pursuant to this paragraph (b), based on the responsibility to support other children, shall not be made to the extent that the adjustment contributes to the calculation of a support order lower than a previously existing support order for the children who are the subject of the modification hearing at which an adjustment is sought.

(7) Schedule of basic child support obligations.

(a)

(I) The basic child support obligation shall be determined using the schedule of basic child support obligations contained in paragraph (b) of this subsection (7). The basic child support obligation shall be divided between the parents in proportion to their adjusted gross incomes.

(II)

(A) For combined gross income that falls between amounts shown in the schedule of basic child support obligations, basic child support amounts shall be interpolated. The category entitled "number of children due support" in the schedule of basic child support obligations shall have the meaning defined in subsection (3) of this section.

(B) Except as otherwise provided in sub-subparagraph (D) of this subparagraph (II), in circumstances in which the parents' combined monthly adjusted gross income is less than one thousand one hundred dollars, a child support payment of fifty dollars per month for one child, seventy dollars per month for two children, ninety dollars per month for three children, one hundred ten dollars per month for four children, one hundred thirty dollars per month for five children, and one hundred fifty dollars per month for six or more children shall be required of the obligor. The minimum order amount shall not apply when each parent keeps the children more than ninety-two overnights each year as defined in paragraph (h) of subsection (3) of this section. In no case, however, shall the amount of child support ordered to be paid exceed the amount of child support that would otherwise be ordered to be paid if the parents did not share physical custody.

(C) Except as otherwise provided in sub-subparagraph (D) of this subparagraph (II), in circumstances in which the parents' combined monthly adjusted gross income is one thousand one hundred dollars or more, but in which the parent with the least number of overnights per year with the child has a monthly adjusted gross income of less than one thousand nine hundred dollars, the court or delegate child support enforcement unit, pursuant to section 26-13.5-105(4), C.R.S., shall perform a low-income adjustment calculation of child support as follows: The court or delegate child support enforcement unit shall determine each parent's monthly adjusted gross income, as that term is defined in subsection (3) of this section. Based upon the parents' combined monthly adjusted gross incomes, the court or delegate child support enforcement unit shall determine the monthly basic child support obligation, using the schedule of basic child support obligations set forth in paragraph (b) of this subsection (7) and shall determine each parent's presumptive proportionate share of said obligation. The court or delegate child support enforcement unit shall then adjust the income of the parent with the fewest number of overnights per year with the child by subtracting one thousand one hundred dollars from that parent's monthly adjusted gross income. The result of the subtraction shall be added to the following basic minimum child support amount as additional minimum support, unless the result of the subtraction amount is zero or a negative figure, in which case the court shall add zero to the following basic minimum child support amount: Fifty dollars for one child; seventy dollars for two children; ninety dollars for three children; one hundred ten dollars for four children; one hundred thirty dollars for five children; and one hundred fifty dollars for six or more children. The court or delegate child support enforcement unit shall compare the product of this addition to the parent's presumptive proportionate share of the monthly basic support obligation determined previously from the schedule of basic child support obligations. The lesser of the two amounts shall be the basic monthly support obligation to be paid by the low-income parent, as adjusted by the low-income parent's proportionate share of the work-related and education-related child care costs, health insurance, extraordinary medical expenses, and other extraordinary adjustments as described in subsections (9) to (11) of this section. The low-income adjustment shall not apply when each parent keeps the children more than ninety-two overnights each year as defined in subsection (8) of this section. In no case, however, shall the amount of child support ordered to be paid exceed the amount of child support that would otherwise be ordered to be paid if the parents did not share physical custody.

(D) In any circumstance in which the obligor's monthly adjusted gross income is less than one thousand one hundred dollars, regardless of the monthly adjusted gross income of the obligee, the obligor shall be ordered to pay the minimum monthly order amount in child support based on the number of children due support and this subsection (7). The minimum order amount shall be fifty dollars per month for one child, seventy dollars per month for two children, ninety dollars per month for three children, one hundred ten dollars per month for four children, one hundred thirty dollars per month for five children, and one hundred fifty dollars per month for six or more children. The minimum order amount shall not apply when each parent keeps the children more than ninety-two overnights each year as defined in subsection (8) of this section. In no case, however, shall the amount of child support ordered to be paid exceed the amount of child support that would otherwise be ordered to be paid if the parents did not share physical custody.

(E) The judge may use discretion to determine child support in circumstances where combined adjusted gross income exceeds the uppermost levels of the schedule of basic child support obligations; except that the presumptive basic child support obligation shall not be less than it would be based on the highest level of adjusted gross income set forth in the schedule of basic child support obligations.

(b) Schedule of basic child support obligations:

[Omitted - for schedules see the official statute or refer to child support worksheets]

(8) Computation of basic child support - shared physical care - split physical care - stipulations - deviations - basis for periodic updates.

(a) Except in cases of shared physical care or split physical care as defined in paragraphs (h) and (i) of subsection (3) of this section, a total child support obligation is determined by adding each parent's respective basic child support obligation, as determined through the guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations specified in subsection (7) of this section, work-related net child care costs, extraordinary medical expenses, and extraordinary adjustments to the schedule of basic child support obligations. The parent receiving a child support payment shall be presumed to spend his or her total child support obligation directly on the children. The parent paying child support to the other parent shall owe his or her total child support obligation as child support to the other parent minus any ordered payments included in the calculations made directly on behalf of the children for work-related net child care costs, extraordinary medical expenses, or extraordinary adjustments to the schedule of basic child support obligations.

(b) Because shared physical care presumes that certain basic expenses for the children will be duplicated, an adjustment for shared physical care is made by multiplying the basic child support obligation by one and fifty hundredths (1.50). In cases of shared physical care, each parent's adjusted basic child support obligation obtained by application of paragraph (b) of subsection (7) of this section shall first be divided between the parents in proportion to their respective adjusted gross incomes. Each parent's share of the adjusted basic child support obligation shall then be multiplied by the percentage of time the children spend with the other parent to determine the theoretical basic child support obligation owed to the other parent. To these amounts shall be added each parent's proportionate share of work-related net child care costs, extraordinary medical expenses, and extraordinary adjustments to the schedule of basic child support obligations. The parent owing the greater amount of child support shall owe the difference between the two amounts as a child support order minus any ordered direct payments made on behalf of the children for work-related net child care costs, extraordinary medical expenses, or extraordinary adjustments to the schedule of basic child support obligations. In no case, however, shall the amount of child support ordered to be paid exceed the amount of child support that would otherwise be ordered to be paid if the parents did not share physical custody.

(c)

(I) In cases of split physical care, a child support obligation shall be computed separately for each parent based upon the number of children living with the other parent in accordance with subsections (7), (9), (10), and (11) of this section. The amount so determined shall be a theoretical support obligation due each parent for support of the child or children for whom he or she has primary physical custody. The obligations so determined shall then be offset, with the parent owing the larger amount owing the difference between the two amounts as a child support order.

(II) If the parents also share physical care as outlined in paragraph (b) of this subsection (8), an additional adjustment for shared physical care shall be made as provided in paragraph (b) of this subsection (8).

(d) Stipulations presented to the court shall be reviewed by the court for approval. No hearing shall be required; however, the court shall use the guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations to review the adequacy of child support orders negotiated by the parties as well as the financial affidavit that fully discloses the financial status of the parties as required for use of the guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations.

(e) In any action to establish or modify child support, whether temporary or permanent, the guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations as set forth in subsection (7) of this section shall be used as a rebuttable presumption for the establishment or modification of the amount of child support. Courts may deviate from the guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations where its application would be inequitable, unjust, or inappropriate. Any such deviation shall be accompanied by written or oral findings by the court specifying the reasons for the deviation and the presumed amount under the guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations without a deviation. These reasons may include, but are not limited to, the extraordinary medical expenses incurred for treatment of either parent or a current spouse, extraordinary costs associated with parenting time, the gross disparity in income between the parents, the ownership by a parent of a substantial nonincome producing asset, consistent overtime not considered in gross income under sub-subparagraph (C) of subparagraph (II) of paragraph (a) of subsection (5) of this section, or income from employment that is in addition to a full-time job or that results in the employment of the obligor more than forty hours per week or more than what would otherwise be considered to be full-time employment. The existence of a factor enumerated in this section does not require the court to deviate from the guidelines and basic schedule of child support obligations but is a factor to be considered in the decision to deviate. The court may deviate from the guidelines and basic schedule of child support obligations even if no factor enumerated in this section exists.

(f) The guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations may be used by the parties as the basis for periodic updates of child support obligations.

(9) Adjustments for child care costs.

(a) Net child care costs incurred on behalf of the children due to employment or job search or the education of either parent shall be added to the basic obligation and shall be divided between the parents in proportion to their adjusted gross incomes.

(b) Child care costs shall not exceed the level required to provide quality care from a licensed source for the children. The value of the federal income tax credit for child care shall be subtracted from actual costs to arrive at a figure for net child care costs.

(10) Adjustments for health care expenditures for children.

(a) In orders issued pursuant to this section, the court shall also provide for the child's or children's current and future medical needs by ordering either parent or both parents to initiate medical or medical and dental insurance coverage for the child or children through currently effective medical or medical and dental insurance policies held by the parent or parents, purchase medical or medical and dental insurance for the child or children, or provide the child or children with current and future medical needs through some other manner. If a parent has been directed to provide insurance pursuant to this section and that parent's spouse provides the insurance for the benefit of the child or children either directly or through employment, a credit on the child support worksheet shall be given to the parent in the same manner as if the premium were paid by the parent. At the same time, the court shall order payment of medical insurance or medical and dental insurance deductibles and copayments.

(b) The payment of a premium to provide health insurance coverage on behalf of the children subject to the order shall be added to the basic child support obligation and shall be divided between the parents in proportion to their adjusted gross income.

(c) The amount to be added to the basic child support obligation shall be the actual amount of the total insurance premium that is attributable to the child who is the subject of the order. If this amount is not available or cannot be verified, the total cost of the premium should be divided by the total number of persons covered by the policy. The cost per person derived from this calculation shall be multiplied by the number of children who are the subject of the order and who are covered under the policy. This amount shall be added to the basic child support obligation and shall be divided between the parents in proportion to their adjusted gross incomes.

(d) After the total child support obligation is calculated and divided between the parents in proportion to their adjusted gross incomes, the amount calculated in paragraph (c) of this subsection (10) shall be deducted from the obligor's share of the total child support obligation if the obligor is actually paying the premium. If the obligee is actually paying the premium, no further adjustment is necessary.

(e) Prior to allowing the health insurance adjustment, the parent requesting the adjustment must submit proof that the child or children have been enrolled in a health insurance plan and must submit proof of the cost of the premium. The court shall require the parent receiving the adjustment to submit annually proof of continued coverage of the child or children to the delegate child support enforcement unit and to the other parent.

(f) If a parent who is ordered by the court to provide medical or medical and dental insurance for the child or children has insurance that excludes coverage of the child or children because the child or children reside outside the geographic area covered by the insurance policy, the court shall order separate coverage for the child or children if the court determines coverage is available at a reasonable cost.

(g) Where the application of the premium payment on the guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations results in a child support order of fifty dollars or less or the premium payment is twenty percent or more of the parent's gross income, the court or delegate child support enforcement unit may elect not to require the parent to include the child or children on an existing policy or to purchase insurance. The parent shall, however, be required to provide insurance when it does become available at a reasonable cost.

(h)

(I) Any extraordinary medical expenses incurred on behalf of the children shall be added to the basic child support obligation and shall be divided between the parents in proportion to their adjusted gross incomes.

(II) Extraordinary medical expenses are uninsured expenses, including copayments and deductible amounts, in excess of two hundred fifty dollars per child per calendar year. Extraordinary medical expenses shall include, but need not be limited to, such reasonable costs as are reasonably necessary for orthodontia, dental treatment, asthma treatments, physical therapy, vision care, and any uninsured chronic health problem. At the discretion of the court, professional counseling or psychiatric therapy for diagnosed mental disorders may also be considered as an extraordinary medical expense.

(11) Extraordinary adjustments to the schedule of basic child support obligations - periodic disability benefits.

(a) By agreement of the parties or by order of court, the following reasonable and necessary expenses incurred on behalf of the child shall be divided between the parents in proportion to their adjusted gross income:

(I) Any expenses for attending any special or private elementary or secondary schools to meet the particular educational needs of the child; and

(II) Any expenses for transportation of the child, or the child and an accompanying parent if the child is less than twelve years of age, between the homes of the parents.

(b) Any additional factors that actually diminish the basic needs of the child may be considered for deductions from the basic child support obligation.

(c) In cases where the custodial parent receives periodic disability benefits granted by the federal "Old-age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance Act" on behalf of dependent children due to the disability of the noncustodial parent or receives employer-paid retirement benefits from the federal government on behalf of dependent children due to the retirement of the noncustodial parent, the noncustodial parent's share of the total child support obligation as determined pursuant to subsection (8) of this section shall be reduced in an amount equal to the amount of the benefits.

(d) In cases where the custodial parent receives a lump sum retroactive award for benefits granted by the federal old-age, survivors, or disability insurance benefits program, 42 U.S.C. 7, on behalf of a dependent child due to the disability of the noncustodial parent, or receives a lump sum retroactive award for employer-paid retirement benefits from the federal government on behalf of a dependent child due to the retirement of the noncustodial parent, the lump sum award received by the custodial parent must be credited against any retroactive support judgment or any past-due child support obligation, regardless of whether the past-due obligation has been reduced to judgment owed by the noncustodial parent. This credit must not be given against any amounts owed by the noncustodial parent for debt as defined in section 14-14-104 or for any retroactive support or any arrearage that accrued prior to the date of eligibility for disability or retirement benefits as determined by the social security administration. Any lump sum retirement or disability payments due to the retirement or disability of the noncustodial parent, received by the custodial parent as a result of the retirement or disability of the noncustodial parent, paid for a period of time that precedes the date of such benefit date eligibility, or any amount in excess of the established child support order or judgment, must be deemed a gratuity to the child.

(12) Dependency exemptions. Unless otherwise agreed upon by the parties, the court shall allocate the right to claim dependent children for income tax purposes between the parties. These rights shall be allocated between the parties in proportion to their contributions to the costs of raising the children. A parent shall not be entitled to claim a child as a dependent if he or she has not paid all court-ordered child support for that tax year or if claiming the child as a dependent would not result in any tax benefit.

(13) Emancipation.

(a) For child support orders entered on or after July 1, 1997, unless a court finds that a child is otherwise emancipated, emancipation occurs and child support terminates without either party filing a motion when the last or only child attains nineteen years of age unless one or more of the following conditions exist:

(I) The parties agree otherwise in a written stipulation after July 1, 1997;

(II) If the child is mentally or physically disabled, the court or the delegate child support enforcement unit may order child support, including payments for medical expenses or insurance or both, to continue beyond the age of nineteen;

(III) If the child is still in high school or an equivalent program, support continues until the end of the month following graduation. A child who ceases to attend high school prior to graduation and later reenrolls is entitled to support upon reenrollment and until the end of the month following graduation, but not beyond age twenty-one.

(IV) If the child marries, the child shall be considered emancipated as of the date of the marriage. If the marriage is annulled, dissolved, or declared invalid, child support may be reinstated.

(V) If the child enters into active military duty, the child shall be considered emancipated.

(b) Nothing in paragraph (a) of this subsection (13) or subsection (15) of this section shall preclude the parties from agreeing in a written stipulation or agreement on or after July 1, 1997, to continue child support beyond the age of nineteen or to provide for postsecondary education expenses for a child and to set forth the details of the payment of the expenses. If the stipulation or agreement is approved by the court and made part of a decree of dissolution of marriage or legal separation, the terms of the agreement shall be enforced as provided in section 14-10-112.

(14) Annual exchange of information.

(a) When a child support order is entered or modified, the parties may agree or the court may require the parties to exchange financial information, including verification of insurance and its costs, pursuant to paragraph (c) of subsection (5) of this section and other appropriate information once a year or less often, by regular mail, for the purpose of updating and modifying the order without a court hearing. The parties shall use the approved standardized child support forms specified in subsection (4) of this section in exchanging financial information. The forms shall be included with any agreed modification or an agreement that a modification is not appropriate at the time. If the agreed amount departs from the guidelines and schedule of basic child support obligations, the parties shall furnish statements of explanation that shall be included with the forms and shall be filed with the court. The court shall review the agreement pursuant to this paragraph (a) and inform the parties by regular mail whether or not additional or corrected information is needed, or that the modification is granted, or that the modification is denied. If the parties cannot agree, no modification pursuant to this paragraph (a) shall be entered; however, either party may move for or the court may schedule, upon its own motion, a modification hearing.

(b) Upon request of the noncustodial parent, the court may order the custodial parent to submit an annual update of financial information using the approved standardized child support forms, as specified in subsection (4) of this section, including information on the actual expenses relating to the children of the marriage for whom support has been ordered. The court shall not order the custodial parent to update the financial information pursuant to this paragraph (b) in circumstances where the noncustodial parent has failed to exercise parenting time rights or when child support payments are in arrears or where there is documented evidence of domestic violence, child abuse, or a violation of a protection order on the part of the noncustodial parent. The court may order the noncustodial parent to pay the costs involved in preparing an update to the financial information. If the noncustodial parent claims, based upon the information in the updated form, that the custodial parent is not spending the child support for the benefit of the children, the court may refer the parties to a mediator to resolve the differences. If there are costs for such mediation, the court shall order that the party requesting the mediation pay such costs.

(15) Post-secondary education.

(a) This subsection (15) shall apply to all child support obligations established or modified as a part of any proceeding, including but not limited to articles 5, 6, and 10 of this title and articles 4 and 6 of title 19, C.R.S., prior to July 1, 1997. This subsection (15) shall not apply to child support orders established on or after July 1, 1997, which shall be governed by paragraph (a) of subsection (13) of this section.

(b) For child support orders entered prior to July 1, 1997, unless a court finds that a child is otherwise emancipated, emancipation occurs and child support terminates without either party filing a motion when the last or only child attains nineteen years of age unless one or more of the following conditions exist:

(I) The parties agree otherwise in a written stipulation after July 1, 1991;

(II) If the child is mentally or physically disabled, the court or the delegate child support enforcement unit may order child support, including payments for medical expenses or insurance or both, to continue beyond the age of nineteen; or

(III) If the child is still in high school or an equivalent program, support continues until the end of the month following graduation, unless there is an order for postsecondary education, in which case support continues through postsecondary education as provided in this subsection (15). A child who ceases to attend high school prior to graduation and later reenrolls is entitled to support upon reenrollment and until the end of the month following graduation, but not beyond age twenty-one.

(IV) If the child marries, the child shall be considered emancipated as of the date of the marriage. If the marriage is annulled, dissolved, or declared invalid, child support may be reinstated.

(V) If the child enters into active military duty, the child shall be considered emancipated.

(c) If the court finds that it is appropriate for the parents to contribute to the costs of a program of postsecondary education, then the court shall terminate child support and enter an order requiring both parents to contribute a sum determined to be reasonable for the education expenses of the child, taking into account the resources of each parent and the child. In determining the amount of each parent's contribution to the costs of a program of postsecondary education for a child, the court shall be limited to an amount not to exceed the amount listed under the schedule of basic child support obligations in paragraph (b) of subsection (7) of this section for the number of children receiving postsecondary education. If such an order is entered, the parents shall contribute to the total sum determined by the court in proportion to their adjusted gross incomes as defined in paragraph (a) of subsection (3) of this section. The amount of contribution that each parent is ordered to pay pursuant to this subsection (15) shall be subtracted from the amount of each parent's gross income, respectively, prior to calculating the basic child support obligation for any remaining children pursuant to subsection (7) of this section.

(d) In no case shall the court issue orders providing for both child support and postsecondary education to be paid for the same time period for the same child regardless of the age of the child.

(e) Either parent or the child may move for an order at any time before the child attains the age of twenty-one years. The order for postsecondary education support may not extend beyond the earlier of the child's twenty-first birthday or the completion of an undergraduate degree.

(f) Either a child seeking an order for postsecondary education expenses or on whose behalf postsecondary education expenses are sought, or the parent from whom the payment of postsecondary education expenses are sought, may request that the court order the child and the parent to seek mediation prior to a hearing on the issue of postsecondary education expenses. Mediation services shall be provided in accordance with section 13-22-305, C.R.S. The court may order the parties to seek mediation if the court finds that mediation is appropriate.

(g) The court may order the support paid directly to the educational institution, to the child, or in such other fashion as is appropriate to support the education of the child.

(h) A child shall not be considered emancipated solely by reason of living away from home while in postsecondary education. If the child resides in the home of one parent while attending school or during periods of time in excess of thirty days when school is not in session, the court may order payments from one parent to the other for room and board until the child attains the age of nineteen.

(i) If the court orders support pursuant to this subsection (15), the court or delegate child support enforcement unit may also order that the parents provide health insurance for the child or pay medical expenses of the child or both for the duration of the order. The order shall provide that these expenses be paid in proportion to their adjusted gross incomes as defined in subsection (3) of this section. The court or delegate child support enforcement unit shall order a parent to provide health insurance if the child is eligible for coverage as a dependent on that parent's insurance policy or if health insurance coverage for the child is available at reasonable cost.

(j) An order for postsecondary education expenses entered between July 1, 1991, and July 1, 1997, may be modified pursuant to this subsection (15) to provide for postsecondary education expenses subject to the statutory provisions for determining the amount of a parent's contribution to the costs of postsecondary education, the limitations on the amount of a parent's contribution, and the changes to the definition of postsecondary education consistent with this section as it existed on July 1, 1994. An order for child support entered prior to July 1, 1997, that does not provide for postsecondary education expenses shall not be modified pursuant to this subsection (15).

(k) Postsecondary education support may be established or modified in the same manner as child support under this article.

(16) Child support commission. (Omitted)