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Colorado implements improvements to aid child support collection

Colorado parents who have primary or sole custody of their children know the often-vital role that child support payments made on time and in full play in their ability to care for those children. In some cases, unfortunately, it's necessary for the state to get involved to enforce child support orders. That state help can be crucial to the lives of Colorado families.

That's one reason why Gov. John Hickenlooper has declared this month Child Support Services Month. Besides recognizing the work and achievements of the employees who work for Colorado Child Support Services, he says that he also helps to highlight how important it is for children to have both of their parents in their lives.

Colorado Child Support Services has made some recent innovations aimed at improving the rates of full and timely child support payments. For example, the department recently introduced the options of electronic and mobile payments to improve efficiency and convenience for the payer. Reportedly, over 5,000 payments of nearly $2 million in all have been made using the new system.

Obviously, parents who are unemployed have a particularly difficult time meeting their child support obligations. That's why a pilot program is focusing on helping these parents find jobs. It's called the Colorado Parents Employment Project. Last year almost 200 people found work through the program.

Another innovation, set to begin at the end of August, will send automated text messages to parents to remind them of payments that are due instead of telephone calls. This method has helped improve child support enforcement in other states.

If you are having difficulty making your child support payments due to job loss or other circumstances, it's essential that you let your attorney know so that he or she can inform the court. The consequences for missing payments or making late or incomplete payments are too high. Even if your co-parent informally agrees to a lowering or temporary stop of your payments, you need to get court approval for the change to avoid fines and other consequences.

Source: Colorado Department of Human Services, "Gov. Hickenlooper Proclaims August ‘Child Support Services Month’," Aug. 03, 2015

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