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Children: Maintenance

Work and Pensions written question – answered on 10th January 2008.

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Photo of Paul Goodman Paul Goodman Shadow Minister, Communities and Local Government

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the policy of the Child Support Agency is on British fathers paying child maintenance to non-British mothers resident in the UK.

Photo of James Plaskitt James Plaskitt Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department for Work and Pensions

The administration of the Child Support Agency is a matter for the chief executive. He will write to the hon. Member with the information requested.

Letter from Stephen Geraghty, dated 10 January 2008:

In reply to your recent Parliamentary Question about the Child Support Agency, the Secretary of State promised a substantive reply from the Chief Executive.

You asked the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the policy of the Child Support Agency is on British fathers paying child maintenance to non-British mothers resident in the UK.

The Agency will make a maintenance calculation provided the parent with care, non-resident parent and the qualifying child are all habitually resident in the United Kingdom. The nationality of the parents does not affect this policy.

A person is habitually resident if he/she is ordinarily resident and has been for an appreciable period. While each case is different, the Agency has to take account of the person's circumstances and intentions as follows:

the person's normal centre of interest or connections to a particular place; the length, continuity and purpose of residence in the United Kingdom; the length and purpose of any absence from the United Kingdom; and the nature of the person's work.

I hope you find this answer helpful.

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Annotations

Gill Duval
Posted on 28 Jan 2008 10:53 am (Report this annotation)

Paul Goodman asked the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the policy of the Child Support Agency is on British fathers paying child maintenance to non-British mothers resident in the UK." and the answer from James Plaskitt, I feel, is incorrect.
I can tell you, with personal experience of contacting the Child Support Agency on behalf of a destitute foreign national with a newborn baby , that they will not follow up child maintenance from a British father if the applicant is a foreign national. Even if the baby has a British passport they say the mother is the applicant. They just suggest that the mother goes through the courts. It may be that I misunderstand "resident" as she did not have National Insurance number but she was certainly living here.
Gill Duval.