When spouses choose to separate, they are both expected to continue to contribute to the upbringing of their child or children. This is an arrangement that can be made between the two or for which Child Maintenance Service can intervene. Asking for expert legal advice, and working with our child maintenance solicitors, is recommended for parents who wish to determine how they should split the costs between them and how much they are expected to pay.
This is a discussion that can take place amicably in most cases, and parents can agree with the amounts between them, however, specialized legal assistance may be required in more complex cases.
One’s income value and the number of children affect the final amount. Talking with our child maintenance solicitors can help clarify important questions.
Child maintenance is a very important topic and our divorce lawyer in London can provide you with specific details and personalized information according to your case. The maintenance amount is calculated to a set of principles, and our lawyers are the ones who can answer questions on how the UK Government works out child maintenance. You can reach out to us for more information, apart from the data provided herein.
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Who is required to pay child maintenance?
Both parents are expected to pay for the costs associated with raising the child or children. This means that even if the child does not live with you, you will still be required to pay the determined amount.
It is not uncommon for the amount to be reviewed periodically, for example, once a year. The duration of the payment depends on the age of the child/children. In most cases, divorced parents are expected to pay child maintenance until their child turns 16 or 20 when they are enrolled in approved education or training. For the purpose of maintenance, approved education is full-time (more than an average of 12 hours per week, supervised study or course-related work experience). Those who decide to make a private agreement with the help of our child maintenance solicitors can choose to continue to pay after the aforementioned period.
A maintenance arrangement can also be concluded when the parents have never been in a relationship.
How much is child maintenance in the UK?
The child maintenance amount is calculated according to the parent’s yearly gross income, along with any benefits such as tax credits, if applicable (student grants or loans are not taken into consideration for this purpose).
The Child Maintenance Service determines the paying parent’s income and calculates the child maintenance rates based on this amount, adjusted to include any things that may affect the determined gross income amount. Our child maintenance solicitors list these rates below:
- Below 7£: there is no applicable child maintenance rate when the parent has a gross weekly income under this amount;
- 7£ – 100£: in this case the weekly amount is 7£; this also applies if the paying parent gets benefits;
- 01£ – 199.99£: the weekly amount is calculated by the Child Maintenance Service using a formula; this also applies when the gross weekly income is between 200£ and 3,000£;
- More than 3,000£: if the paying parent’s gross weekly income is more than this amount, then the receiving party can apply for extra maintenance in court; our child maintenance solicitors can assist.
- Unknown gross weekly income or information not provided: in this case, the weekly amount for child maintenance is 38£ for 1 child, 51£ for two children and 61£ for 3 or more children.
When the paying parent is involved in shared care (spends the night with the child or children), the weekly amount will be reduced based on the average number of shared care nights per week. Likewise, the amount will be adjusted accordingly by the Service when the paying parent also has other children for which maintenance is required.
The payment obligations will change when the paying parent’s situation changes, for example when there is a change in income or family circumstances. If this is the case, one should inform the Child Maintenance Services as soon as possible.
Can our child maintenance solicitors help calculate the amount?
Yes, our team can help you make an arrangement if you are willing and able to discuss this matter with your former spouse. This is applicable in most cases where the divorce or separation took place on common grounds and the partners have decided that they will both be fully involved in co-parenting. Alternatively, even if an arrangement is not possible with the former spouse, our child maintenance solicitors can act on your behalf and in the best interest of your child/children in order to negotiate with the other party or present the case to the Child Maintenance Service.
Our team can help you calculate the weekly amount when the grow weekly income falls under the two categories that are determined using a formula.
Working with our team can greatly ease the process and will allow you to focus on your and your children’s emotional wellbeing in a time filled with changes.
Contact our child maintenance solicitors for more information on how we can help you calculate the amount and establish a payment scheme.