Proposals for new child maintenance scheme unveiled

Detailed proposals for the new child maintenance scheme have been published today, in a consultation document snappily entitled The Child Support Maintenance Calculation Regulations 2012 – A technical consultation on the draft regulations. In a deluge of information from CMEC, you can also find a news summary here, an Impact Assessment here, an Equality Impact Assessment here, a draft of The Child Support Maintenance Calculation Regulations 2012 here and a draft of The Child Support (New Calculation Rules)(Consequential and Miscellaneous Amendment) Regulations 2012 here. Got all that?

Some key changes:
  • Payments will usually be based on the non-resident parent’s latest tax-year gross income, sourced directly from HM Revenue & Customs (which it is hoped will reduce application times).
  • The 'flat-rate' will be increased from £5 to £7, with the Government consulting on whether this should be increased further.
  • Addition of a second level within the basic rate for those non-resident parents with weekly income in excess of £800.
  • Annual reviews of the maintenance calculation by using updated income information supplied by HMRC.
  • Parents who share the care of their children exactly equally will no longer be required to pay maintenance through the statutory scheme, although it is recognised that this will be a small minority of cases.
  • Maintenance calculations will take account of a child supported by a non-resident parent outside of the statutory scheme.
  • No need to adjust calculations for small changes in income.

The closing date for submissions in respect of the consultation is 23rd February 2012.


  1. "Parents who share the care of their children exactly equally will no longer be required to pay maintenance through the statutory scheme".

    Not good news for anyone involved in shared residence applications. It always lurked in the background but it's bound to become the elephant in the room now.

  2. Yep. Makes a nonsense of the idea that maintenance and contact should be kept separate.

  3. The whole idea is nonsense anyway, paying to have your children taken away from you is not natural law.

  4. Thank you for that contribution, Anonymous.

  5. Thanks, np. I would add that, should the Government do this, then it would effectively disenfranchise all NRPs from the three main parties.

    It is like Nick Clegg on tuition fees. He forgot about his electorate and stands a cat in hells chance of retaining Sheffield Hallam at the next general election. One of the biggest student constituencies in the country.

    If this goes through I'd probably take to beating up me ex and he new boyfriend out of frustration and annoyance out of being treated in this appauling manner. I'd rather live in the gutter than pay it and wish it doesn't happen. For me and my children and all the children and future children of this country. Children need resident parents not non resident wallets for fathers. Strewth.

  6. irony - adj; of or pertaining to iron; a bit ferrous.


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