Q&As

A paying parent’s gross income is less than £156,000 per annum, but they also receive a transport allowance, shares and bonuses. Which of those benefits, if any, will a Child Maintenance Service calculation take into account? Will those benefits be taken into account as to the jurisdiction of the court to make a ‘top-up’ order, and would the court then have regard to any of those benefits when calculating the amount of a top up order?

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Published on LexisPSL on 24/02/2020

The following Family Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • A paying parent’s gross income is less than £156,000 per annum, but they also receive a transport allowance, shares and bonuses. Which of those benefits, if any, will a Child Maintenance Service calculation take into account? Will those benefits be taken into account as to the jurisdiction of the court to make a ‘top-up’ order, and would the court then have regard to any of those benefits when calculating the amount of a top up order?

Since the coming into force of the Child Support Act 1991, the Child Maintenance Service (CMS) and its precursor bodies have had sole jurisdiction in matters relating to child support, the courts retaining jurisdiction only where income exceeds a set minimum (ie, top-up orders), where the parties agree (though either can seek a CMS assessment after 12 months) or where there is a foreign element, in some circumstances. For further guidance, see Practice Notes: Child maintenance provisions via the court and Child support—top-up maintenance orders.

The CMS works out its calculations based upon the yearly gross income of the paying party. This information is obtained by the CMS from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). The relevant provisions are set out in

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