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The Child Support Maintenance Calculation Regulations 2012 - consultation closes on 23rd February 2012

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Joined: 09/03/2008

Work and Pensions<

Child Support Maintenance Calculation Regulations 2012 <

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (Maria Miller): I am today publishing a consultation document on the calculation methodology for the new statutory child maintenance scheme, to be launched next year.

The Government want to encourage and support parents to make their own family-based arrangements, but are committed to providing a statutory service for those separated parents who are unable to co-operate.

As part of our programme of reforms, the existing Child Support Agency schemes will be replaced over time with a new, efficient scheme for those parents who are unable to make their own arrangements.

The aim of the new scheme is to produce a faster, more accurate and transparent process for assessing child maintenance payments. Payments will usually be based on the non-resident parent’s latest tax year gross income, sourced directly from HM Revenue and Customs. This will make the scheme less dependent on information from non-resident parents and so make it harder for non-resident parents to avoid their responsibilities by not disclosing their full income.

Annual reviews will ensure that cases are kept up to date in a way they are not on the current CSA schemes.

I am also announcing two proposals today which would provide particular benefit to parents with care, who are generally mothers with children.

The Child Maintenance and Other Payments Act 2008 provided for the flat rate paid by non-resident parents on benefit and low income to be increased from the current £5 to £7. I am today consulting on whether this should be increased further to help ensure more children receive the financial support they need.

I am also consulting on achieving a fairer situation for children to get closer to equalising the financial support for children living with, and those living apart from, the non-resident parent.

The consultation document, the impact assessments and draft regulations will be available on the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission (CMEC) and Department for Work and Pensions websites later today. A link to the CMEC website is attached below.

Copies of the consultation document and the impact assessment will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

Consultation runs from 1st December 2011 to 23 February 2012<.