Cost of living adjustment (COLA)

Most child support orders issued in Minnesota include a requirement that the child support amount be adjusted every two years based on changes in the cost of living. Cost of living adjustments are based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI). This is a standard measure of the inflation rate determined by the U.S. Department of Labor.

If you receive a Cost-of-Living Adjustment Notice, the increased child support obligation goes into effect on May 1st.


  • Parents may contest the increase by filing and serving a Motion to Contest.

The parent who owes child support must file the Notice of Motion and Motion to Stop COLA with the court administrator before May 1st. The parent must also serve copies by first-class mail to the other parent. If there is an open child support case with the county child support office, serve copies to the child support office as well.

If the parent who owes child support properly serves and files a motion asking to stop the adjustment, the child support office will wait for the court decision before adjusting the child support. If the court orders a cost-of-living adjustment, it will take effect on the date originally listed in the cost-of-living notice.

  • Both parents may agree to waive or partially waive the cost-of-living adjustment.  Both parents must complete and sign the Agreement & Order to Waive (or Partially Waive) COLA,  contact the child support office to have the County Attorney's Office review and/or sign the Agreement, and file the documents with the court administrator before the May 1st Deadline. 


If you have additional questions about a Cost-of-Living Adjustment, please contact your child support worker.

For more information:
Frequently asked questions on child support cost of living adjustments
Guide to calculating child support and spousal maintenance cost of living adjustments