The following Family Q&A Produced in partnership with Katherine Illsley of 4 King’s Bench Walk provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
Parents are able to reach private agreements between themselves, without making use of the Child Maintenance Service (CMS) at all, as to the level of child maintenance to be paid and the manner in which it should be paid, ie a 'family-based arrangement'. It may be that for some families the most convenient way for child maintenance to be paid is for the non-resident parent to take on the bulk, or indeed the entirety, of the mortgage payments on the family home. A private agreement can be brought to an end at any time though by either parent if they wish to apply to the CMS, provided they are eligible to use this service.
If either parent applies to the CMS, the appropriate level of maintenance will be calculated for them with reference to the non-resident parent’s gross income, how many children they need to pay maintenance for, and how many children live with them, see Practice Note: Statutory child support scheme, in particular the section headed ‘Formula’. Parents can then arrange between themselves to pay the money that is set by the CMS directly from the non-resident parent to the resident
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