Home England government Curfew proposed for parents who do not pay child support

Curfew proposed for parents who do not pay child support

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The change is being considered as part of new proposals that will get more of the money owed to children of separated parents.

The Child Maintenance Service (CMS) collected or arranged £1billion in child support payments last year, operating as a crucial weapon in the fight against child poverty. Child support helps lift about 140,000 children out of poverty every year.

Curfew orders would be another method of enforcement, alongside current powers that include confiscation of passports and driver’s licenses and income withholding orders, to tackle parents who continually refuse to pay the alimony due.

As an alternative punishment to prison, which is costly and impedes the upkeep of children, curfews would have a chilling effect by restricting and disrupting the lifestyles of non-compliant parents, preventing them, for example, from going out dinner, going to the pub or going on holiday.

Curfews would be monitored by electronic etiquette with an electronic monitoring service enforcing the etiquette, monitoring and ensuring that the parent follows the rules of etiquette. If the parents do not comply, the CMS could refer them to a court which could then extend the curfew order or impose a prison sentence.

DWP Lords Minister Baroness Stedman-Scott said:

For children from low-income households, child support can make all the difference in lifting them out of poverty.

We are not afraid to sue those parents who deliberately and repeatedly refuse to pay for their children.

The curfew orders are another step towards giving CMS a full arsenal of powers to ensure children receive the financial support they need to have the best start in life.

This builds on new powers introduced earlier this year to digitize all communications to parents and improvements to help the service track down the paying parent, calculate child support and enforce arrears more efficiently.

The consultation is published here and closes on August 12, 2022.

More information

  • The Child Maintenance Service was established in 2012 to replace the former Child Support Agency, to increase levels of cooperation between separated parents and to encourage parents to fulfill their responsibilities to provide their children with the support financial support they need to achieve better results in life.
  • [Get help arranging child maintenance]

    (https://child-maintenance.service.gov.uk/get-help-arranging-child-maintenance/) is a new digital service that helps parents decide what kind of child support is right for them and situation.

  • Curfew orders will take into account each individual’s circumstances.
  • This power will only apply to paying parents living in England, Scotland or Wales, as with our current powers of driving license and passport disqualification and imprisonment.
  • The consultation period begins on July 9, 2022 and runs until August 12, 2022.
  • Curfew orders will be added to CMS’s enforcement powers subject to parliamentary approval.

Media inquiries for this press release – 0115 965 8781

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