The process of figuring out child maintenance can be confusing, and the pressing question you’re probably asking is: How much child maintenance should I pay?
In this article, Solicitors Near Me, the site that connects you free of charge to solicitors near to where you live or work, will look into this question for you.
How much child maintenance should I pay?
Emotionally, it’s challenging, as you’re dealing with your child’s living costs after the breakdown of a relationship – as well as not seeing your child as often.
Child maintenance is money that’s used to help pay for your child’s living costs.
It’s paid by the parent who doesn’t ordinarily live with the child to the person who has the most day-to-day care of the child.
You’ll need to pay child maintenance if you:
- are the child’s biological or adoptive parent
- don’t live with the child as part of their family
- are the child’s legal parent
How Do I Know How Much Child Maintenance I Should Be Paying?
There are plenty of accurate child maintenance calculators available online, but the most accurate is available on GOV.UK HERE.
Many factors contribute to how much you’ll be required to pay or how much you’ll receive. But the general advice is that if it’s possible, you should attempt to broach the subject of child maintenance with the child’s other parent.
Obviously, this might not be possible after the breakdown of a relationship. In that case, it might be time to seek expert legal advice.
You can ask the Child Maintenance Service for a ruling on the amount of child maintenance to be paid. It is worth noting that in any calculation you’ll need to provide information on:
- how much the paying parent earns
- how many children the paying parent is or will be paying maintenance for
- how many nights a week the child spends with the paying parent
- if any other children live with the paying parent
It’s also worth noting that if the parent who has is on certain benefits, then the other parent will receive a maximum of £7 per week.
To give you an idea of the general costs, the default child maintenance payment is:-
- £38 per week for 1 child
- £51 per week for 2 children
- £61 per week for 3+ children.
However, it’ll depend on your individual circumstances, the other parent’s situation, and whether your child has any additional needs or costs to be catered for.
For example, if you earn more than £3,000 per week, then you’ll need to go to court to receive a ruling on the amount of maintenance you’ll be required to pay.
The same goes if you live outside of the UK, or if you’ll need to pay for additional costs associated with a disability or for your child’s education.
What If I Opt For A CMS Assessment?
You should hear from the CMS within 4 weeks barring any difficulties in locating the paying parent. The result will be sent to you with accompanying details.
It’s then over to you to agree it’s correct before the CMS sends a payment schedule to both parents for the year, showing when payments should be made, and including any backdated payments.
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