Children deserve more: challenging child maintenance avoidance
Published on 9 July 2017
In-depth case studies illustrating the loopholes that allow child maintenance avoidance – where paying parents are able to minimise the amount of child support they’re requested to pay. The report shows how rules – and the way that they’re implemented – under the Child Support Agency and Child Maintenance Service mean that some parents are paying sums which bear little relation to their actual wealth.
The report recommends:
- Better income data sharing between the CMS and HMRC
- Reinstated anti-evasion safeguards
- Proper support for parents to challenge their calculation
- A joint DWP/HMRC review of the role of HMRC when determining child maintenance
- Better co-ordination with the family courts.
- Reforms under the CMS mean the system is cheap to administer, but fail children
- Parents are left in the dark about their options, meaning many give up on a fair assessment
- The DWP passes the buck to HMRC, which means there is often limited investigation into paying parents’ finances
- Reforms under the CMS, which abolished some grounds to challenge child maintenance calculations, mean it is even harder to get a fair assessment.