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Child support, child has moved out ??

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17 half year old, has moved in with grandparents and has started traineeship, mother claims carers allowance so she should not receive tthat as the child is  not at home, as for child support, the mother only has child  at home 1 weekend as we have them other weekend, should the father pay the support to the grandparent? Also if the child is working shouldn't support cease ??
It is likely that the grandparents should be claiming CS as a non-parent carer of the child as it is likely that they are themselves providing the care. However, the legislation only allows the non-parent carer to apply for CS, their is no requirement for them to do so. As such there could be complications in ensuring that the CS goes to the child and not the other parent, especially if you are the liable parent. I'd suggest, if you want to undertake this, trying to report to the CSA that the level of care has changed providing as much evidence as is possible. The following extract, although not regarding a non-parent carer (note the legislation considers grand parents as a single carer, as per section 26 of the Child Support Assessment Act "[b]26 Requirements of applications where there are joint carers[/b] If 2 or more persons (joint carers) jointly have care of a child, then only one of the joint carers may apply for administrative assessment of child support for the child. If one of those joint carers is a parent of the child, the joint carer who applies must be that parent.):

The CSA Guide - 2.2.1: Basics of care (extract) said
Older children living away from home

Generally, older children who live independently and separately from their parents (and any non-parent carers) provide for many of their own care needs. This may include meeting their own ongoing daily needs (such as meal preparation, transport, socialising, etc) as well as making their own decisions about their daily activities, schooling and health issues. Therefore, it may be difficult to establish whether a person provides care for an older child who lives separately from that person.

Where a person provides substantial financial support to an older child living away from home, CSA will generally consider that financial support as an indicator that the person is continuing to provide care for the child. The support can be in relation to daily costs such as food, accommodation and transport, and/or in relation to longer term costs such as school fees, paying for airfares home for holidays, clothing, health and dental care, etc.

Example

M and F have one child, A, who is 16 and working part time after leaving school early. M helps A find a suitable flat and pays the bond so that A can move closer to work. M helps A to pay for rent and utilities, and assists with other expenses such as buying work clothes and arranging and paying for medical appointments. M also helps A with decisions about things like finding alternative study options for further education. Every weekend M does A's laundry and provides cooked meals for the week. CSA would determine that M continues to care for A for child support purposes despite A living separately from M.


While financial support is often a key factor in determining whether a person cares for a child who lives away from home, it will not always be the sole determinant. In cases where the financial support provided is limited, and/or where other factors exist that suggest that the person continues to care for the child, CSA will consider whether the person is actively involved in major decisions relating to the child. For example, decisions relating to the child's health, schooling, relationships, career, etc may be indicators that the person continues to provide care for the child.

Example

M and F have one child, A, who is 17 and working as an apprentice. A decides to rent a room in a share house. F helps A move in and pays the cost of petrol on the occasions A comes back for a visit. F also makes deposits into A's bank account every now and then if A needs some extra cash to make ends meet. A pays for rent, utilities and any other expenses, and shares in household chores including meal preparation and cleaning. Unless there were other relevant factors, CSA would determine that A is living independently and F does not care for A for child support purposes.

As such, if the non-parent carers (the grandparents) are providing meals for the child and doing the laundry for the child, then they should be considered the carers, as opposed to the other parent (that is unless the CSA apply double standards, which may well be the case).

If the child has their own "significant" income then a departure from formula based assessment (termed by the CSA as Change of Assesment(COA)), under reason 4 (income of the child) may affect the CS. A significant income according to the CSA Guide is one that is regular and exceeds the maximum rate of Youth Allowance. The respective section of the guide is included below. COA is notorious for being applied with a distinct bias against liable parents. It is also very intrusive and also long winded. I'd suggest that due to such an application very likely resulting in a reduced liability and that the child will not be an eligible child for much longer (i.e. when the child turns 18), that the CSA would not see an advantage in treating such an application as a priority when there are so many applications that will very likely result in an increased liability and will therefore very likely have a higher priority. Anyway, here's the respective section from the CSA guide:

The CSA Guide - 2.6.10 - income of the child said
2.6.10: Reason 4 - income of the child
Version 3.0, Last updated 10 August 2012 2:30pm
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.

The Registrar 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.

The Registrar 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

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

The Registrar 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.

The Registrar 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'), the Registrar 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, generally the Registrar will not be satisfied that a child's 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 July 2012 a child would generally need to earn or receive a gross income of at least $310.20 per week for the earnings to be considered so significant as to be capable of affecting the assessment.

However, this is only a guide and in certain circumstances decision-makers may determine that the child's income is significant even if it is below this amount or is insignificant even though it is above this amount.

Please note that the actual figures will change periodically in line with changes to payment rates for Youth Allowance. For up to date figures please refer to the Youth Allowance page on the department's website, humanservices.gov.au.

The Registrar 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 $320 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 the Registrar 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.

I would suggest that if the other parent is claiming benefits that they should be claiming that you report the fraud through the respective agency (Centrelink I believe). Doing such could result in there being compelling evidence in regards to who is actually caring for the child.
If child has started a traineeship then they are earning an income which is a terminating event re child support.
Fairgo said
If child has started a traineeship then they are earning an income which is a terminating event re child support.

Fairgo, I'm pretty sure that a child earning an income is not a terminating event. Rather that the income of the child can be considered under a departure (Change of Assessment) by way of reason 4. My understanding is that section 12 of the Assessment Act sets out the terminating events and more specifically section 12(1) for child related terminating events (subsection 22 is if the child is under welfare care) :

The Child Support Assessment Act - Section 12 said
12  Interpretation - happening of child support terminating events

   (1)   A child support terminating event happens in relation to a child if:
   (a)   the child dies; or
   (b)   the child ceases to be an eligible child under regulations made under subsection 22(1); or
   (c)   the child turns 18; or
   (d)   the child is adopted; or
   (e)   the child becomes a member of a couple; or
   (f)   none of the following subparagraphs applies any longer in relation to the child:
   (i)   the child is present in Australia;
   (ii)   the child is an Australian citizen;
   (iii)   the child is ordinarily resident in Australia; or
   (g)   the circumstances described in subsection 30AA(1) of the Registration and Collection Act apply in relation to the child.
Note:   Paragraph (1)© may be affected by section 151C (which deals with continuing administrative assessments and child support agreements beyond a childs 18th birthday in certain situations).


   (2)   A child support terminating event happens in relation to a person who is a carer entitled to child support in relation to a child if the person dies.

   (2AA)   A child support terminating event happens in relation to a child if:
   (a)   both of the parents of the child are not eligible carers of the child; and
   (b)   there are no non parent carers entitled to be paid child support in relation to the child.

   (2A)   A child support terminating event happens in relation to a person who is a carer entitled to child support in relation to a child if:
   (a)   an international maintenance arrangement applies in respect of the person and the child; and
   (b)   the person is a resident of a reciprocating jurisdiction; and
   (c)   the person ceases to be a resident of the reciprocating jurisdiction; and
   (d)   the person does not, immediately after so ceasing, become a resident of another reciprocating jurisdiction or of Australia.

   (3)   A child support terminating event happens in relation to a person who is a liable parent in relation to a child if:
   (a)   the person dies; or
   (b)   the person ceases to be a resident of Australia.

   (3A)   A child support terminating event happens in relation to a person who is a liable parent in relation to a child if:
   (a)   an international maintenance arrangement applies in respect of the person and the child; and
   (b)   the person is a resident of a reciprocating jurisdiction; and
   (c)   the person ceases to be a resident of the reciprocating jurisdiction; and
   (d)   the person does not, immediately after so ceasing, become a resident of another reciprocating jurisdiction or of Australia.

   (3B)   A child support terminating event happens in relation to a person who is a liable parent in relation to a child if:
   (a)   an international maintenance arrangement applies in respect of the person and the child; and
   (b)   the person is a resident of a reciprocating jurisdiction; and
   (c)   the reciprocating jurisdiction becomes specified in regulations made for the purposes of section 30A as a reciprocating jurisdiction for a resident of which an application for:
   (i)   an administrative assessment of child support for a child; or
   (ii)   acceptance of a child support agreement;
      may not be accepted.

   (4)   A child support terminating event happens in relation to a child and the persons who are respectively a carer entitled to child support and a liable parent in relation to the child if:
   (a)   either of the following subparagraphs applies in relation to the child and those persons:
   (i)   the carer entitled to child support elects by a notice that complies with section 151 (Election by carer entitled to child support to end administrative assessment) that the liability of the liable parent to pay or provide child support for the child to the carer entitled to child support is to end from a specified day;
   (ii)   the Registrar accepts a child support agreement made in relation to the child between the carer entitled to child support and the liable parent, and the agreement includes provisions under which the liability of the liable parent to pay or provide child support for the child to the carer entitled to child support is to end from a specified day; and
   (b)   the specified day arrives.

   (4A)   Subject to subsection (4B):
   (a)   if an international maintenance arrangement applies in respect of a childa circumstance set out in paragraph (1)(f) is not a child support terminating event in relation to the child; and
   (b)   if an international maintenance arrangement applies in respect of a person who is a liable parent in respect of a childa circumstance set out in paragraph (3)(b) is not a child support terminating event in relation to the person.

   (4B)   Subsection (4A) does not apply if:
   (a)   where one only of the carer entitled to child support in relation to a child and the liable parent in relation to the child is a resident of Australiathat carer or that liable parent ceases to be a resident of Australia; or
   (b)   where both the carer entitled to child support in relation to a child and the liable parent in relation to the child are residents of Australiathat carer and that liable parent both cease to be residents of Australia.

   (5)   A child support terminating event happens in relation to a child and the childs parents if the parents become members of the same couple for a period of 6 months or more.
Sorry Mike you got this one well an truly. My memory is fading on this stuff.
Fairgo said
Sorry Mike you got this one well an truly. My memory is fading on this stuff.
  Fairgo, you could write to the site admin and ask them to change your username to Albert Zeimer
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