Consultation and debate on child maintenance

On 24 JuneLord Farmer is leading a Question for Short Debate in the House of Lords: “to ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to reform the Child Maintenance Service”.

To inform his debate, he wants to hear about experiences of the Service – use the short survey form here to submit ideas before midday on Wednesday 23rd June.

Another consultation with a slightly longer timescale  has just been launched by the Department of Work and Pensions, with responses sought by 6th August.

It covers  possible law changes that would enable the following:

  • unearned income held by HMRC to be included in Child Maintenance Service (CMS) calculations alongside paying parents’ earned income
  • evidential requirements for self-employed parents to be eased where a change that has breached the income tolerance has been reported
  • small volumes of low value debt to be extinguished where the value of the debt is substantially less than the cost of collecting it
  • arrears to be extinguished where child maintenance has been deducted from a parent’s earnings where their employer has gone into administration and CMS are unable to recover the outstanding arrears from the trustee handling the companies’ insolvency
  • all CMS notifications to be sent, received and accessed digitally
  • the following organisations to provide information when requested to do so in a timely manner: private pension providers, academy proprietors, the Motor Insurers’ Bureau and all types of companies that offer, promote or sell investment management services or facilitate share trading

Both consultations apply to Scotland.