Children: Maintenance

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 16th September 2021.

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Photo of Marion Fellows Marion Fellows SNP Whip, Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Disabilities)

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what support is available through the Child Maintenance Service for parents-with-care who have evidence that a non-resident parent is working when they have claimed they are not.

Photo of Guy Opperman Guy Opperman The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

The Child Maintenance Service (CMS), introduced a Financial Investigations Unit (FIU) in April 2014. They are responsible for investigating allegations of criminal or civil activities that negatively impact the correct amount of child maintenance being calculated. The FIU deal with a variety of different cases such as, allegations of fraud when attending or supplying a DNA test and allegations that the Paying Parent (PP) has failed to report their true level of income.

The FIU deploy a range of different investigative techniques that are tailored to the allegation and circumstances of the case. This involves gathering independent evidence from a range of sources and where applicable working with stakeholders such as Counter Fraud and Compliance Directorate (CFCD) in joint operations. Once an investigation is concluded, where a discrepancy in income is found, the CMS will recalculate the amount of maintenance due to be paid.

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