Reducing child maintenance payments might seem like an insurmountable task at first glance. In this article, Solicitors Near Me look at how to reduce child maintenance payments.
But that’s not necessarily the case.
What Is Child Maintenance?
Child maintenance, also known as child support, 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.
Child maintenance is often referred to as child support, and you can get it if:
- You’re the main carer for the child
- The other parent doesn’t live with you as part of your family
A child is defined as either someone who’s under 16 or under 20 if they’re in approved education or training.
You’ll need to pay child maintenance if:
- You are the child’s biological or adoptive parent
- You don’t live with the child as part of their family
- You are the child’s legal parent
How Do I Calculate Child Maintenance?
There are plenty of accurate child maintenance calculators in the UK you can find online. The most accurate is available on GOV.UK HERE.
If you’re getting divorced or ending a civil partnership, then a child arrangement might be a part of your discussions and arrangements.
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.
Eligible benefits include:
- Carer’s Allowance
- Employment and Support Allowance
- Income Support
- Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Pension Credit
- State Pension
- Universal Credit calculated on the basis that they have no income
So, How Can I Reduce Child Maintenance Payments?
The good news is the amount of child maintenance that’s paid is reviewed on an annual basis.
And if you’re looking to reduce your child maintenance payments because of a change in your circumstances, then that’s good news…
As the parent who is paying, there are some changes that you’re legally required to inform the CMS of – so, this means if you become self-employed or begin (or stop) receiving benefits, you need to tell the CMS.
If you provide incorrect information or fail to provide the correct information to the CMS, you could receive a fine of up to £1,000.
The most likely reason for a change in child maintenance payments is a significant change in circumstances – for example, losing your job.
In this case, you must inform the CMS of your circumstances as soon as possible so that your child maintenance payments can be altered to reflect this.
The reality is that not all child maintenance payments are processed via the CMS, though, with some parents agreeing on family-based arrangements.
It’s also worth noting that if the gross weekly income of the paying parent is more than £3,000, then the day-to-day carer of the child would need to go to court to ask for additional child maintenance.
In this scenario, it’s worth seeking out legal advice from a solicitor who deals with children’s matters.
Get Connected With A Specialist Family Solicitor Near Me Now!