The Child Support (Miscellaneous and Consequential Amendments) Regulations 2009

25 MAR 2009

WED 25/03/2009 - The powers exercised to make these Regulations are those contained in the Child Support Act 1991 (c. 48) ("the 1991 Act"). Some of those powers are conferred by provisions of the 1991 Act prior to the amendments made to that Act by the Child Support, Pensions and Social Security Act 2000 (c. 19) ("the 2000 Act"), some of which amendments are not fully in force, and relate to the child support scheme which was in force prior to 3rd March 2003 and which remains in force for the purposes of certain cases ("the old scheme"). Other powers are conferred by provisions of the 1991 Act as amended by the 2000 Act, which relate to the child support scheme provided for by those amendments, which came into force for the purposes of specified categories of cases on 3rd March 2003 (see the Child Support, Pensions and Social Security Act 2000 (Commencement No. 12) Order 2003) ("the current scheme").

These Regulations are made in respect of functions of the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission ("the Commission"). Section 13 of the Child Maintenance and Other Payments Act 2008 (c. 6) transfers functions from the Secretary of State to the Commission and that section was brought into force by the Child Maintenance and Other Payments Act 2008 (Commencement No. 4 and Transitional Provision) Order 2008 on 1st November 2008.

Regulation 2 amends the Child Support Departure Direction and Consequential Amendments Regulations 1996 ("the Departure Direction Regulations"). This regulation substitutes regulation 24 of the Departure Direction Regulations (diversion of income) to extend the ground in that regulation for a departure direction for diversion of income to a case where the non-applicant has the ability to control the amount of income which is taken into account as assessable income received from employment or self-employment and dividends from shares and the Commission is satisfied that this is income which would otherwise fall to be taken into account under the Child Support (Maintenance Assessments and Special Cases) Regulations 1992 ("the 1992 Regulations"). These amendments affect the old scheme.

Regulation 3 amends the 1992 Regulations. Regulation 3(2) inserts definitions for "pensionable age" and "qualifying age for state pension credit" into regulation 1 of the 1992 Regulations. Regulation 3(3) and (4) amends regulations 9 and 18 of the 1992 Regulations, replacing the references to age 60 with references to the qualifying age for state pension credit. The Pensions Act 1995 (c. 26) allows for the eventual equalisation of state pension age between men and women. Regulation 9(1)(d) (exemption of disability premium for the purposes of calculating the income of the absent parent) and regulation 18(2)(a)(iii) (no restriction on housing costs to apply to a person entitled to disability premium) of the 1992 Regulations are amended to reflect the equalisation of state pension age.

Regulation 3(5) inserts paragraph 15A into Schedule 2 to the 1992 Regulations. This paragraph prescribes, for the purpose of disregarding amounts when calculating parents' net income, any payment of In-Work Credit, Better Off In-Work Credit or Return to Work Credit under section 2 of the Employment and Training Act 1973 (c. 50). The amendments to the 1992 Regulations affect the old scheme.

Regulation 4 amends the Child Support (Variations) Regulations 2000 ("the Variations Regulations"). This regulation substitutes regulation 19(4) of the Variations Regulations (income not taken into account and diversion of income) to extend the ground in that paragraph for a variation for diversion of income to a case where the non-resident parent has the ability to control the amount of income which is taken into account as net weekly income received from employment or self-employment and the Commission is satisfied that this is income which would otherwise fall to be taken into account under the Child Support (Maintenance Calculations and Special Cases) Regulations 2000 or under paragraph (1A) of regulation 19 of the Variations Regulations. These amendments affect the current scheme.

These Rules come into force on 6 April 2009.

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