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AAT makes another sensible decision

The Child Support system needs a shake up, needs some common sense and to borrow a phrase, some social heart.

Another beating for the Child Support Program today with yet another decision in our favour from the Social Security Appeals Tribunal. The Child Support system needs a shake up, needs some common sense and to borrow a phrase, some social heart. This father lived with children and mother in the same home as a separated parent. Child support decided to deem the care rate at 15% because the mother felt that is all the time he should have.

It should have been obvious to the most junior officer that the legislation was quite clear, however that didn't stop the department and seven months later after a torrid time of constant letter writing, high stress, letter receiving and calls the Payer had the decision that should have been made seven months earlier that the care level is 50 / 50.

What can never be repaid is the extraordinary amount of time and effort required to get this just and equitable outcome and for the Payer the angst, lack of available funds and the damage done by CS forcing the employer to make deducting payments directly from the employee pay packet. How can Child Support ever set right the relationship the Payer has with his employer who simply considers the father another failed deadbeat dad who wouldn't pay his child support.

Shame on you Child Support people for another completely useless decision that I need to fix up and regardless of the good outcome we got at the AAT you will never write and profusely apologise to the payer for your despicable behaviour.

In a postscript to this story, as the written decision was handed down in our favour, the mother decided to move out with the children and ensure the father really does have limited, if any time now. That is really working together for the benefit of the children stuff.

I don't suppose Child Support will apologise and pay back the large amount of money screwed from this father in the last seven months… I would suggest they will keep it and quarantine for future child support liability. What a system….

Executive Secretary - Shared Parenting Council of Australia
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