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confused - advice appreciated

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This is my first post on this forum but have been reading with interest many of the other topics. I have a few queries and would appreciate some advise before lodging COA.

My youngest daughter is 17 years and did not return to school after completing yr 10 in 2010. In March my ex asked CSA to change the assessment as my daughter has refused to come to us for the court ordered time (this has been in place for years) I now have to pay 100%.

My daughter has been working in my ex wife's business since leaving school.

I have been advised by CSA that I need to lodge a COA if I want my daughter's income taken into consideration for the assessment.  I have looked at the COA form and am not impressed with having to included all my income, assets etc. for my ex to see.  

My current income is now more that my 2011 income.

My first question is - will CSA use my income listed on this form and change my current assessment.

My ex wife's income has been reduced to an unbelievable low amount due to her putting all her expenses through her business. Also have been advised to do a COA to have this investigated as well.  

My second question is about when child support stops.
My daughter turns 18 in early April 2012. If she enrols in a TAFE course (eg Cert in IT or horticulture) at the beginning of 2012, can my ex wife ask for child support to be extended til she finishes this course.

Meaning I am paying child support after she turns 18.

Also I am confused by another situation - my ex and I had a private payment arrangement but also in March she asked CSA to collect child support from me.
I received one bill in late March and paid on time (in April). Assessment re accessed to 100% then I received my second bill on the last day in April to pay by 7th May, with an unexpected arrears amount. I rang and negiotated a repayment schedule for this arrears. Then one day later I got a letter from CSA saying they are going to deduct my payments from my pay. (No mention of this during the phone call) No reason given in the letter just that they are going to do it. Can they do this and why would they.  Can I ring and tell them not to as I fully intend to make my payments on time. Any suggestions or advice would be appreciated.

(Moderator - Identifying information deleted)

Last edit: by Secretary SPCA

dj7000 said
My first question is - will CSA use my income listed on this form and change my current assessment.

My ex wife's income has been reduced to an unbelievable low amount due to her putting all her expenses through her business. Also have been advised to do a COA to have this investigated as well.  

Unfortunately in short the CSA,via COA, will very likely distort whatever they can to increase your liability. Personally I would at most only supply the details regarding the child's income quoting the privacy act that there must be a need for the government to request such information, affirming that they have all other income. The only information that is required for a reason 4 (income of the child) is the child's income and expenditure, especially considering that the CSA now determine "disposable income" without such information for debt collection (i.e. according to a formula that CSA staff have very recently received training on).

The CSA Guide - 2.6.10: Reason 4 - income of the child said
2.6.10: Reason 4 - income of the child
Version 2.4, Last updated 23 February 2011 10:00am
Context

A parent can apply for a change of assessment in special circumstances if the child support assessment is unfair because of the child's income, earning capacity, property or financial resources.
Legislative references

    Sections 98C, 117(2)©(i) and 117(4) to 117(9) Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989

Explanation

The usual formula assessment provisions do not take into account the childs personal income when calculating the rate of child support payable by a parent for that child.

CSA cannot end a child support assessment because of the income earned by an eligible child. However, there may be a reason for changing an assessment if, in the special circumstances of the case, the administrative assessment of child support results in an unjust and inequitable determination of the level of financial support to be provided by the liable parent for the child because of the income, earning capacity, property and financial resources of the child (section 117(2)©(i)).

The phrase 'special circumstances of the case' is not defined in the Assessment Act. The Family Court has held that 'it is intended to emphasise that the facts of the case must establish something which is special or out of the ordinary' (Gyselman and Gyselman (1992) FLC 92-279).

Each case has to be considered in the light of the individual circumstances of the child and the parents. Substantial income and/or assets, whether or not directly under the control of the child, will be relevant when deciding whether the assessment is unfair.

A parent can make an application to change the child support assessment if they consider that the financial resources of the child result in an unjust and inequitable level of child support under the child support assessment.

CSA will consider the financial resources of the child in the context of the income and asset position of both parents. In most cases there will be some overlap between these considerations and that of consideration of what is 'just and equitable'.

    Minimal earnings
    Significant income
    'Just and equitable', or fair, and the kinds of decision that can be made

Minimal earnings

Minimal earnings are generally not regarded as a reason to change an assessment of child support (Mee and Ferguson (1986) FLC 91-716).

CSA will not usually consider that the following types of income affect the financial responsibility of the parents:

    income derived from casual work in holidays or after school hours,
    gifts of small amounts of money,
    pocket money.

CSA must disregard an income-tested pension, allowance or benefit received by the child (or by another person on behalf of the child) when considering that child's income, earning capacity, property and financial resources (section 117(7)).
Significant income

If a child receives more than a minimal income (i.e. a significant income), CSA will consider whether that income is sufficient to warrant a change to an assessment. This will depend upon the income of the child, the financial circumstances of the parents, the amount of child support payable under the assessment and the circumstances of the case. However, as a guide, CSA will not be satisfied that a childs income is sufficient to warrant a change to the assessment unless that income is regular and exceeds the equivalent of the maximum rate of Youth Allowance payable to a child under 18 years of age living at home plus the income free threshold applicable to students/New Apprentices. This means, for example, that as at 1 January 2011 a child would generally need to earn or receive a gross income of at least $224.35 per week for the earnings to be considered so significant as to be capable of affecting the assessment.

(Please note that the actual figures will change periodically in line with changes to Centrelink rates. For up to date figures please refer to the youth allowance page on the Centrelink website.)

CSA will also consider the needs of the child including the costs incurred by the child, or the parents, in earning the income, e.g. transport and clothing costs.

Example

Where a child earns $230 per week but incurs high transport costs, and the payer has an adequate disposable income, it might not be considered fair to change the assessment.

If the payer has a low income and the payee is in a comfortable financial position, then it might be considered fair to change the assessment.

'Just and equitable', or fair, and the kinds of decision that can be made

If there is a reason to change the assessment CSA must consider whether it would be fair to the child, the payer, and the payee to make a decision to change the assessment (sections 117(4) to 117(9)).

Where the assessment covers a number of eligible children, the significant income of one child may be sufficient to establish the reason in respect of that child. It may be fair to reflect the income of the child by reducing the costs of that child used in the assessment, which will reduce the total child support payable.

Where there is a change to the assessment due to the income, earning capacity, property and financial resources of the child, the change will usually have effect until the child turns 18, or the end of the school year in which the child turns 18, subject to an application under section 151B (see Chapter 2.5.5).

The decision will depend on the circumstances of the case and any other reasons under consideration.




dj7000 said
My daughter turns 18 in early April 2012. If she enrols in a TAFE course (eg Cert in IT or horticulture) at the beginning of 2012, can my ex wife ask for child support to be extended til she finishes this course.

Meaning I am paying child support after she turns 18.

The CSA Guide - 2.5.5: Application to have an assessment continue past a child's 18th birthday said
2.5.5: Application to have an assessment continue past a child's 18th birthday
Version 2.5, Last updated 3 February 2012 3:00pm
Context

A carer entitled to child support can apply to extend a child support assessment (including one based on an agreement) until the last day of the secondary school year if the child will turn 18 during that year and is in full-time secondary education.

A parent who has a relevant dependent child who will turn 18 during that year and is in full-time secondary education can also apply for the relevant dependent child to be taken into account in any relevant administrative assessment until the last day of the secondary school year.

A secondary school includes a school, TAFE college or any other educational institution which provides full-time secondary education. A secondary school also includes a school that caters for the needs of children with learning difficulties and provides a form of education that is not tertiary education.
Legislative references

    Sections 5, 151B, 151C, 151D and 151E Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989
    Section 66E Family Law Act 1975

Explanation

    How to make an application
    How CSA will make a decision
    Full-time secondary education
    Last day of secondary school for the year
    Consideration of late applications
    The consequences of the decision

How to make an application

A carer entitled to child support can apply to extend a child support assessment until the last day of the school year if the child will turn 18 during that year and is in full-time secondary education (section 151B).

If the child support assessment is or will be based on a child support agreement on the day before the child's 18th birthday, a carer entitled to child support can apply to have the underlying child support assessment extended until the last day of the school year in which the child will turn 18 (section 151B). The assessment can continue to be based on the agreement if both parents agree. If one parent does not agree to extend the effect of the agreement, the extension to the administrative assessment will be based on a formula calculation.

A parent of a relevant dependent child can apply to have the relevant dependent child taken into account in the calculation of any relevant child support assessment until the last day of the school year in which the child turns 18 (section 151B(1A)).

An application (made orally or in writing) should include:

    the name of the child;
    the name of the school or college;
    whether the child receives full-time secondary education;
    the last day of secondary school for that year; and
    if the application relates to a child support agreement, the application must be in writing and signed by both parents.

The application can be made after the child turns 17 (section 151C(2)(a)) and must be made before the child turns 18 (section 151C(2)(e)).
How CSA will make a decision

CSA must accept the application (section 151C) if:

    the child has turned 17; and
    an assessment (including an assessment based on a child support agreement) is in force, or is likely to be in force, on the day before the child turns 18 or an administrative assessment that takes the child into account is in force, or is likely to be in force, on the day before the child's 18th birthday; and
    the child is likely to be in full-time education on their 18th birthday; and
    the child's 18th birthday will be on or before the last day of the secondary school year; and
    the application was made before the child's 18th birthday (or there are exceptional circumstances justifying a late application).

Full-time secondary education

'Full-time secondary education' means education that is determined by the secondary school at which the child is receiving the education to be full-time secondary education (section 5).

'Secondary school' means a school, TAFE college, or any other educational institution, which provides full-time secondary education (section 5). A secondary school also includes a school that caters for the needs of children with learning difficulties and provides a form of education that is not tertiary education.

Example

A has an intellectual disability and attends a school that specifically caters for children with special learning needs. While the curriculum for A's school is different from the curriculum for a child attending a non-special needs secondary school, A's school is still regarded as providing a secondary education.

A child may receive a full-time secondary education through distance or online learning provided by a secondary school. Also, a child being home schooled may, in certain circumstances and subject to the relevant state legislation, be receiving a secondary education.
Last day of secondary school for the year

The last day of secondary education is the later of the following:

    if the child is not required to sit an examination, the last day of classes for the school year (as determined by the school); or
    if the child is required to sit an examination, the later of:
        the last day of the period of examinations for the child's year level and
        the last day of classes for the school year (as determined by the school (section 5)).


Example

A attends Smithfield School in Year 12. The last day of classes for Year 12 at Smithfield School is 15 November and the last day of the exam period for year 12 at Smithfield School is 10 December. The assessment should continue until 10 December.

Generally, Australian secondary schools' academic year falls within a calendar year. CSA can continue a child support assessment for a child up to the last day of the school year in which the child turns 18.

Some secondary schools have an academic year that spans two calendar years (e.g. August to May). CSA can continue a child support assessment for a child attending these schools up to the last day of the secondary school year in which the child turns 18.


Examples

A attends Jameson School in Year 12. The school year for Jameson school begins in August and ends in May. A begins his final year of secondary school in August 2011, and turns 18 on 1 September 2011. The assessment should continue until the end of the school year in which A turns 18  i.e. May 2012.

B lives in the UK where the school year ends in June. B turned 18 in March 2011, while in her second-last year of secondary education. B will continue her secondary education after the end of the 2010-11 school year and will finish her secondary education in June 2012.

As B has turned 18 during the secondary school year that ends in June 2011 the assessment can only be extended until June 2011.
Consideration of late applications


CSA can grant an application made after the child's 18th birthday if satisfied that 'exceptional circumstances' existed which prevented the making of the application before the child's 18th birthday (151C(2)(e)(ii)).

The following are examples of circumstances that CSA may consider 'exceptional'; in deciding whether to accept a late application. This is not an exhaustive list and each case must be considered on its own merits.

    Serious health problems delayed lodgement (written confirmation from a health practitioner will be required);
    An application for an assessment has been made but not accepted before the child turns 18, and it was unclear whether the child would be in secondary full-time education;
    The carer was under pressure not to apply (evidence from a person fully aware of the nature and details of the circumstances, e.g. a social worker or police officer, will be required);
    Severe distress or hardship (e.g. caused by a disaster such as fire or flood) delayed lodgement; or
    Communication difficulties led to an inability to access information (a result of geographical location, cultural issues, literacy, language difficulties, etc).

The consequences of the decision

If CSA refuses an application to extend a child support assessment, it must advise in writing the parent or non-parent carer who made the application (section 151C)). The parents or non-parent carer (if any) can object to the particulars of the assessment.

If CSA accepts the application:

    It must advise both the parent or non-parent carer who made the application and the parent liable to pay child support in writing (section 151C(4)); and
    It must advise both parties that, if aggrieved by the decision, they may object to the particulars of the assessment (section 151C(5)).

If the application is for a child of the assessment and CSA has accepted the application, the child turning 18 does not constitute a terminating event (section 151D(1)). Instead:

    A terminating event will happen on:
        the last day of the secondary school year; or
        if the child does not complete the school year, the day CSA is satisfied the child ceases to be in full-time secondary education.
    The child is taken to be aged 17 for the purposes of applying Part 5 of the Act until a terminating event happens (paragraph 151D(2)(a)).

If the assessment for the child is based on an agreement and:

    both parents signed the application for extension, or it is clear from the agreement that the parents envisaged its continuance beyond the child's 18th birthday, the agreement will continue;
    the application was made by the carer entitled to child support only, the assessment will be based on a formula assessment from the child's 18th birthday until a terminating event occurs.

If the application is for a relevant dependent child:

    CSA must amend the assessment to take into account the relevant dependent child until the last day of the school year (section 151E(1)); and
    The child is taken to be aged 17 for the purposes of applying Part 5 of the Act (section 151E(2)) for the period:
        Beginning on the child's 18th birthday; and
        Ending on the last day of the secondary school year.

Examples

A child support agreement is to continue until 30 June 2009. The child, A, turns 18 on 11 July 2009. An application for continuation of the agreement cannot be accepted because the agreement will not be in force on the day before A turns 18. However, there will be a formula assessment in place after the agreement ends and an application for continuation of that assessment can be made.

An application to continue an assessment for a child, B, is granted. B's parents then enter into a child support agreement before B turns 18. There is no end date in the agreement. The agreement continues after B turns 18 because the parents were making an agreement to alter an assessment that continues until end of the school year.

CSA accepts an application to continue a child support agreement for child support for C. C's parents then enter into a new agreement before C turns 18, which effectively ends the previous agreement. The new agreement will not continue after C turns 18 unless C's parents sign a new application for continuation of the later agreement.

A parent who is receiving child support wishes to apply for a child support agreement in relation to D to continue after D turns 18. The other parent refuses to sign the application. CSA cannot continue the agreement. However, the parent receiving child support can apply for the formula assessment to continue after D turns 18. This is the case even where there was no formula assessment in place before CSA accepted the agreement, as the acceptance of a child support agreement has the same effect as the acceptance of an application for assessment (see Chapter 2.7.2).

A child support agreement states that child support will be payable at a given rate until E's 18th birthday or until E finishes Year 12, whichever is the later. An application from the parent receiving child support to extend the assessment is accepted. The agreement continues until the assessment ends at the end of the school year.

An application to continue the recognition of a relevant dependent child, F, after F's 18th birthday is granted. Any assessment where the parent is assessed in respect of other children continues to recognise that F is a relevant dependent child of the parent.


Where a formula assessment continues after a child turns 18, the provisions of the Act apply to allow the parents to lodge estimates of income, notify of changes in care arrangements, apply for a change of assessment under Part 6A, etc, in the same way as before the child turned 18.

A court with family law jurisdiction is able to deal with applications for child maintenance from parents or carers not eligible for a child support assessment. This includes an order for further maintenance of a child over the age of 18 if this is necessary to enable the child to complete their education or because the child has a physical or mental disability. If a court has ordered the payer to pay child support for a child over 18 it will not be necessary to apply for the assessment for that child to continue (see Chapter 3.1.3 for more information about child maintenance orders including whether the orders can be registered with CSA for collection).




dj7000 said
Also I am confused by another situation - my ex and I had a private payment arrangement but also in March she asked CSA to collect child support from me.
I received one bill in late March and paid on time (in April). Assessment re accessed to 100% then I received my second bill on the last day in April to pay by 7th May, with an unexpected arrears amount. I rang and negiotated a repayment schedule for this arrears. Then one day later I got a letter from CSA saying they are going to deduct my payments from my pay. (No mention of this during the phone call) No reason given in the letter just that they are going to do it. Can they do this and why would they.  Can I ring and tell them not to as I fully intend to make my payments on time. Any suggestions or advice would be appreciated.

The CSA Guide - 5.2.2: Payer election to pay CSA directly said
5.2.2: Payer election to pay CSA directly
Version 2.0, Last updated 17 March 2008 5:00pm
Context

CSA is required to collect registered maintenance liabilities by deductions from the payer's wage or salary if it is practicable to do so. However, CSA can accept a payer's election to make payments directly to CSA if it is satisfied the payments will be made on time.
Legislative references

Sections 43 and 44 Child Support (Registration and Collection) Act 1988
Explanation

A payer can elect to make payments directly to CSA. If CSA is satisfied that timely payments will be made it can vary the particulars of the Child Support Register to include a statement that employer withholding doesn't apply. CSA can revoke the payer's election if the payer does not make their payments on time.

    An election for Employer Withholding not to apply
    Payer likely to make timely payments
    Determining whether to revoke an election where a payer does not make timely payments
    Determining whether to revoke an election where the payer has not kept to an arrangement to pay off arrears
    Subsequent elections
    Payers who make an election but subsequently do not make timely payments
    If no election made

An election for Employer Withholding not to apply

CSA is required to collect child support payments from a payer's salary or wages, if it is practicable to do so (section 43(1)). This does not apply if a payer elects that employer withholding should not apply. If CSA is satisfied that a payer who makes an election is likely to make timely payments CSA must accept the election (Section 43(2)& 44(1),(2)).

For existing payers CSA does this by varying the register to contain a statement that employer withholding does not apply (section 44(1)). For new cases, CSA includes the statement in the register at the time the liability is registered (section 44(2)).

If CSA accepts the payer's election, the payer should make payments directly to CSA rather than payments being deducted from the payer's salary or wages.

If CSA refuses a payer's election, the payer may not make a further election for another 2 months (section 44(7C)).

If CSA revoked an earlier election because the payer did not pay on time, the payer cannot make another election for 6 months.

If a payer who pays more than one payee makes an election, that election will apply to all the liabilities, unless the payer specifies otherwise. Where a payer makes an election which does not apply to all their liabilities, CSA will still consider whether the payer is likely to make timely payments for all their liabilities. Thus, CSA will take into account the payer's payment pattern in relation to all their existing liabilities when deciding whether the payer is likely to make timely payments for a new liability, in which the first payment is not yet due.
Payer likely to make timely payments
If a payer makes an election for Employer Withholding not to apply and CSA is satisfied that the payer is likely to make timely payments, CSA must accept the payer's election.

To determine whether a payer is likely to make timely payments, payers can be divided into 4 groups:

    First election by new payers before any payments due
    First election by payers, other than new payers, who do not have arrears
    First election by payers, other than new payers, who have arrears
    Subsequent election where previous election revoked because the payer did not make timely payments

First election by new payers before any payments due

Includes payers who:

    are a customer of CSA for the first time; and
    are not yet due to make the first payment; and
    have not previously made an election.

Whenever possible CSA discusses payment options with a prospective payer before registration. If a payer elects for withholding not to apply the election will often be made before any payment is due. There is no payment pattern which might help indicate whether the payer is likely to make timely payments.

In the absence of a payment pattern, CSA will determine whether the payer is likely to make timely payments on the basis of the preliminary discussions or correspondence with the payer. CSA will be satisfied that the payer is likely to make timely payments, except where the payer has expressly indicated an intention to avoid paying as required.

A payer may claim that they cannot make the entire first payment on time because it includes amounts for a period prior to them knowing of the liability (known as 'start-up arrears'). CSA will be satisfied that the payer is likely to make timely payments even if it is unlikely that all the first payment will be paid on time, provided that the payer:

    did not expressly indicate an intention to avoid paying as required; and
    made a reasonable proposal for paying off the start-up arrears which CSA has accepted; and
    undertook to pay the normal monthly amount (that is, the monthly amount after excluding start-up arrears) when it falls due.

When there are no start-up arrears or minimal amounts owed, the payer may still claim that he or she will not be able to make all the first payment on time because notice from CSA did not allow sufficient time for the arrangement of their financial affairs. CSA will be satisfied that a payer who makes this claim is likely to make timely payments even if it is unlikely that all the first payment will be paid on time, provided that the payer:

    had less than 21 days notice of the first payment; and
    did not expressly indicate an intention to avoid paying as required; and
    undertook to make the first payment as soon as possible after the due date, but no later than the due date for the second payment.

First election by payers, other than new payers, who do not have arrears

Includes payers, whether or not already linked to employer withholding, who:

    have not previously made an election; and
    were due to start making payments by a date which has already passed, either for this liability or for any other current or previous liability; and
    do not have any arrears.

CSA will be satisfied that a payer who does not have arrears is likely to make timely payments, unless the payer has expressly indicated an intention to avoid paying as required.

Example

CSA will not be satisfied that payments are likely to be timely if CSA has collected arrears through either employer withholding, a tax refund intercept, or from a third party.

CSA will normally take into account the payer's payment pattern in relation to any previous liability, whether or not the payee of that liability is the payee of the current liability. The extent to which this will be a factor in determining whether the payer is likely to make timely payments will depend on:

    how long ago the previous liability ceased;
    the reasons for any arrears which may have arisen in relation to the previous liability;
    whether the reasons for any arrears in relation to the previous liability indicate that the payer may again not make timely payments;
    any circumstances in relation to the previous liability which distinguish it from the current liability.


First election by payers, other than new payers, who have arrears


Includes payers, whether or not already linked to employer withholding, who:

    have not previously made an election; and
    were due to start making payments by a date which has already occurred, either for this liability or any other current or previous liability; and
    have arrears.

CSA will be satisfied that a payer who has arrears is nevertheless likely to make timely payments, if the payer:

    made a reasonable proposal for paying off the arrears and the payer is keeping to the arrangement agreed by CSA; and
    is paying the normal monthly amount (that is, the monthly amount after excluding arrears) when each falls due.

Subsequent election where previous election revoked because payer did not make timely payments

Includes payers who:

    previously made an election but did not make timely payments; and
    had the election revoked because CSA was not satisfied that timely payments were likely to resume in the near future; and
    made another election, after waiting the required 6 months.

If a payer again elects for employer withholding not to apply, CSA will not give effect to the payer's subsequent election unless the payer can demonstrate that the circumstances that led to the previous election being revoked no longer exist.

In considering a subsequent election, CSA will require more substantial indicators that payments will be timely than were required when deciding whether to allow the previous election. The kinds of more substantial indicators include:

    the payer offers to be permanently in advance by at least one month's payment;
    the monthly liability has reduced because of a court order or change of assessment decision made after CSA resumed collection, and CSA is satisfied the payer had in fact been making a genuine effort to pay, and that they will be likely to make the new monthly payments in full and on time.

Determining whether to revoke an election where a payer does not make timely payments

If a payer does not make timely payments, CSA will revoke the election unless it is satisfied that:

    the payer is likely to resume making timely payments in the near future; or
    employer withholding is not an efficient method of collection.

In considering whether the payer is likely to resume making timely payments, CSA will first determine whether one of the following special circumstances caused the payer not to pay on time:

    the circumstances causing the failure to make timely payments were beyond the payer's control; and
        the circumstances existed for the one month only; or
        if the circumstances will continue beyond the one month, the payer has taken reasonable action to minimise their effect in the future.
    the payer advised that an unexpected temporary drop in income or an urgent and necessary expense caused the late payment, but for the one month only;
    the amount payable for a particular month is abnormally high because it includes additional amounts for previous months caused by a retrospective variation to the liability, and the payer cannot afford to pay the additional amount by the due date.

If any of these special circumstances apply, CSA will then require the payer to have:

    made a reasonable proposal for paying off the arrears which CSA has accepted; and
    undertaken to pay the normal monthly amount (that is, the monthly amount after excluding arrears) when each falls due; and
    established a payment pattern which indicates that, under normal circumstances, he or she makes timely payments;

before being satisfied that the payer is likely to resume making timely payments in the near future;

CSA will revoke the election if it is not satisfied that the payer is likely to resume making timely payments in the near future.
Determining whether to revoke an election where the payer has not kept to an arrangement to pay off arrears

Where a payer does not keep to an arrangement to pay off arrears, CSA will consider whether to revoke their election. CSA will use the same tests that apply when it considers whether to revoke an election where a payer does not make timely payments (see above).

The payer's failure to keep to the payment arrangement indicates that the special circumstances that led to the arrears in the first place will continue to have an effect. CSA will require the payer to demonstrate that this is not the case.
Subsequent election where CSA rejected the previous election

CSA will consider subsequent elections by payers whose previous election was rejected using the same tests that apply to first elections.
Payers who make an election but subsequently do not make timely payments

If a payer does not make timely payments, CSA must vary the Register entry so that employer withholding applies (section 44(5)) unless it is satisfied that:

    deduction from salary or wages would not be an efficient method of collection; or
    the payer is likely to resume making timely payments in the near future (section 44(5A)).

If CSA revokes a payer's election because they did not make timely payments, that payer cannot make another election for 6 months from the date the election is revoked (section 44(7B)).
If no election made

If a payer who is an employee does not make an election, CSA will collect the payments by employer withholding, unless this would not be an efficient method of collection.




Thank you Mike T for your extracts from the Guide.  They were very helpful.  But the main reason I asked about when child support stops at age 18 is that my accountant said to me that all my ex has to do is enrol my daughter in a TAFE course at the beginning of next year and I will still have to keep paying.  I guess I was thrown a little by that comment and wanted some opinions on how CSA is likely to interpret a TAFE course.   But it does clearly say secondary school studies and our local TAFE doesn't offer secondary school options here.

DJ
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