Lady Justice in front of Colorado flag holding dollar bills.

If you have to litigate a case involving child support arrears, you are going to wish the payments went through the Colorado Family Support Registry, or FSR for short. The registry is a state agency which receives child support and alimony payments from the obligor (that’s the parent or spouse who owes support), and sends them to the payee (the parent receiving the support). That’s it. While means exist to enforce or calculate support amounts (including Graham.Law‘s free Colorado Alimony Calculator), the CO Family Support Registry is simply a clearing house which processes the payments.

There is no separate Family Support Registry in Colorado Springs or other cities – as indicated, it is a statewide registry which processes support payments from all family law courts in the state. However, as indicated below, payments can be made locally in El Paso County through MoneyGram or 7-Elevens.

You may wonder why bother with the Family Support Registry? In short, the FSR maintains the definitive record of all family support payments made, including dates and amounts. If you are one of those lucky parents who completely trusts the other parent to always pay the correct child support amount on time, then maybe you don’t need the FSR. But if problems arise, then kind of like having insurance, you’re going to wish you had a Registry printout showing all payment information.

For a more detailed discussion of the Colorado Family Support Registry, see our FSR article in the Colorado Family Law Guide.

Making Child Support Payments through the Family Support Registry

The FSR should not be confused with a garnishment; an income assignment is just one of the authorized means of paying through the Registry. The support obligor can make payments through the FSR by virtually every means imaginable, including:

  • Income assignment (no service fee)
  • Online payment (no service fee)
  • Mailing a check or money order (no service fee)
  • By telephone (no service fee)
  • Credit or debit cards (has a service fee)
  • MoneyGram (has a service fee)
  • PayNearMe at 7-Eleven (has a service fee)

You need to have your name, FSR account number, and the amount you are paying when making payments to the Family Support Registry. For more information, see the Make a Payment page on the FSR website. And note that while electronic payments are processed the same day, the first time a particular method is used there may be a several day delay.

Receiving Payments from the FSR

The support obligee will have to set up a means of receiving support or maintenance payments online – either by direct deposit into your bank account, or through a debit card which is issued, and then credited each time a payment is made. The debit card is a standard Visa card, and can be used anywhere Visa is accepted. The FSR does not mail checks any longer.

For more information, see the Receiving Payments page on the Family Support Registry website.

Using the FSR Printout at Your Child Support Hearing

For anyone who has ever tried to litigate child support or maintenance arrears using canceled checks, signed receipts for cash payments, money order receipts, etc, the FSR is a godsend. Either the payor or the payee can obtain an FSR printout showing all payments received and disbursed within a defined timeframe. And that printout is admissible in court:

“A copy of the computer printout obtained from the state department of human services of the record of payments of assistance under the Colorado works program as described in part 7 of article 2 of title 26, C.R.S., made on behalf of a child whose custodian has been receiving child support enforcement services pursuant to section 26-13-106, C.R.S., shall be admissible into evidence as proof of such payments in any proceeding to establish child support debt and shall be prima facie evidence of the amount of child support debt owing on behalf of said child.”

C.R.S. 14-14-104(9)

Colorado Family Support Registry FAQ

What is the Colorado Family Support Registry?

The family support registry is a state agency which processes child support payments, receiving support from the payor, paying it to the payee, and keeping an accurate record of all payments. The FSR is like a clearing-house for payments, and does not itself calculate child support, nor enforce support arrears.

How Do I Set Up a Family Support Registry Account in Colorado?

There is no need to set up a Family Support Registry account. In Colorado, an FSR account number is created automatically when a case is filed. However, the support payor will need to set up a payment method, and the recipient will need to set up either a bank account or debit card to receive payments.

How to Find Your Colorado FSR Account Number?

The family support registry account number is on the receipt when payment is made for a new case filing. The account number is important, since it is needed to make or receive payments, so if you lose the number, you can contact the clerk of court to obtain it.

How Can I Make a Child Support Payment through the Family Support Registry?

Child support can be paid through the FSR through an income assignment (formerly known as a “garnishment”), automatic withdrawals from your bank account, credit card, mailing a check, by phone or MoneyGram. You will need your name and FSR account number with payment.

How Can I Receive Support Payments from the Family Support Registry?

Parents receive child support from the FSR electronically, either by direct deposit into their bank account, or through a Visa debit card, which is automatically credited upon the Registry receiving a payment.

How Long Does the CO Family Support Registry Take to Process Payments?

The FSR processes payments the same day they are received, and electronic payments are generally available within 2 business days. However, there may be a waiting period of several days the first time a particular payment method is used, so the payor will need to plan ahead.

Award-Winning Family Support Lawyers in Colorado Springs

family support registry

U.S. News & World Report calls Graham.Law one of the Best Law Firms in America, and our managing partner is a Colorado Super Lawyer. Our family law attorneys have years of experience helping clients navigate the Colorado legal system. We know Colorado divorce & family law inside and out, from complex multi-million dollar property or child custody cases to basic child support modifications.

For more information about our top-rated El Paso County family law firm, contact us by filling out our contact form, calling us at (719) 630-1123 to set up a free consult, or click on:

Colorado Family Law. Period.