Mission Statement

The Child Support Problem Solving Court will assist parents in overcoming barriers to paying child support rather than immediately requesting sanctions. Addressing barriers will ultimately result in compliance and  benefit the families.

ABOUT THE CHILD SUPPORT PROGRAM 

  • In 1974, the Child Support Program was federally mandated to recover public assistance
  • The Child Support Program establishes paternity, support obligations, medical support, and modifies and enforces child support orders
  • The application for services fee is $20.00 unless receiving public assistance
  • Colorado’s child support collection goal is 66%; Jefferson County collected 67.7%
  • In 2014 Jefferson County collected 32 million dollars that was disbursed to families or used to reimburse public assistance
  • Administrative remedies include drivers license suspension, tax and lottery intercepts, suspension of professional licenses and passports
  • When administrative enforcement remedies don’t work then contempt of court is used

For more information about the 1st Judicial District and Jefferson County Child Support Services – contact the Court Team Supervisor:

Katie Smith: 303-271-4329 or at ksmith@co.jefferson.co.us

TRADITIONAL CONTEMPT COURT MODEL

The parent appears at an advisement hearing and enters a plea of guilty or not guilty

The parent could be found in ccontempt and be sentenced to jail for his/her failure to pay with the court order

There could be multiple hearings with the parent appearing before different magistrates

A jail sentence of 180 days at the rate of $70 per day costs the tax payers $1,260

The underline barriers of unemployment, disability or mental health issues, financial illiteracy, substance abuse and unrealistic orders are rarely addressed

PROBLEM SOLVING COURT MODEL

A collaborative partnership involving the courts, child support services, human services and community based organizations

One dedicated magistrate is more effective in building a relationship through positive encouragement towards the goal of compliance

A team of dedicated staff that share the same problem solving philosophy that includes child support case managers, resource navigator, non-custodial parent specialist, and a county attorney

Provide resources and support to assist motivated participants to overcoming their barriers

Graduated sanctions: community service, electronic home monitoring, and work release

Compliance is rewarded by non-appearance through paper reviews