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Child Maintenance and Furloughed Parents

Times are hard, friends are few – or so they say. Seems it is true if you are a parent with primary care of your children and the other parent is not paying child support. If you think the Child Maintenance Service will come to your rescue – think again.

A bit of very basic background The Rules require a non-resident parent to pay child maintenance to the parent with care. In simple terms, through Child Maintenance Options the amount that should be paid on the basic rate is: · One child - 12% of your gross weekly income · Two children - 16% of your gross weekly income · Three or more children - 19% of your gross weekly income I have some sympathy for non-resident parents who are furloughed – they will have a tight pocket and find it hard to pay their bills, I am sure. However, if they are furloughed, in my view, their income has reduced to at worst, 80% (some furloughed workers are still getting paid at 100% of their salary). So surely, that parent can pay 80% or 100% of the child maintenance respectively? If the non-resident parent chooses not to pay in such circumstances the Child Maintenance Service has stated: “If you have not received your child maintenance payment, if possible, please contact the other parent. You could agree with the other parent how much they can pay you at the moment. You can arrange this between yourselves without paying any fees. We will not take any action to collect any missed payments (writers emphasis). When we are able to return to full service, we will collect any unpaid child maintenance you are owed. Keep a record of any payments you receive and any missed payments.” So what are children supposed to do in the meantime? Starve? This is madness and is a very flawed strategy. Children cannot wait to be fed. You know who is and who is not furloughed. The information provided in this article is not intended to constitute legal advice and you should take full and comprehensive legal advice on your individual circumstances by a fully qualified Solicitor before you embark on any course of action. Emma Aslett Penn Chambers Solicitors 0207 183 4595 #childmaintenance #childmaintenanceservice #covid19support #familylaw #coronavirus #CMS #emmaaslett #furloughed

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