Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Death of the CSA

Child Support AgencyAccording to The Times, the Child Support Agency is to be scrapped this summer. Do I hear cheers, or is that just people watching the World Cup?

Before anyone cheers too loudly, spare a thought for what will replace the Agency. Apparently, the idea is to encourage all separating couples (including where the parent with care is on benefits) to sort out child maintenance between themselves, following national guidelines on appropriate levels, and only involve the State where the absent parent refuses to pay the required amount. For this, a new agency will be set up and given extended tracking and enforcement powers, including access to credit details, greater use of deduction from earnings orders and inviting private debt collectors to bid for contracts to enforce payments.

Whether any such new system succeeds will obviously depend upon whether the new powers will lead to a greater level of success in forcing recalcitrant absent parents to pay.


  1. Private debt collection agencies chasing beleagured absent parents. Tagging, removal of passports, access to credit details. What next legalised bounty hunters!!
    When will this government accept that some absent parents simply cannot afford to pay - period. And that attachment of earnings orders force families into ever downward spiralling debt. Especially when the partner with custodies circumstances change (for the better)and they still claim handouts.

  2. A fairer, less rigid method of child support calculation would help to ensure that absent parents only pay what they can afford. As to your last comment, I don't agree with your use of the word 'handouts' - child support is about a parent's responsibility to maintain their child, irrespective of the other parent's circumstances.

  3. ok, ihad an extra marital affair..... which ended. i didnt know she was pregnant until the letter from the csa appeared. fortunately my marital partner and i stayed together and i remain happily married with my children. I do not wish to have any association with my illicit partner nor our offspring and she has confirmed this. she is now married and off of the benefit system. what should i do?

  4. I'm afraid I am unable to give legal advice upon specific matters in this blog. I recommend you consult a solicitor.

  5. Sorry John can i respond to Mr Anonymous here...

    Anonymous - You had an affair, you went paddling without your wellies and your now giving the hard done by act....let this be a lesson to you, and your wife deserves a medal. You wont be doing that again in a hurry. Your five minutes of fun has been a knock on effect for the whole of your family. You made it you pay for it, harsh but fair!


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