Wayne - can you please put this in?
For reason 10 - Resident Child being included as a relevant dependant.
WHAT DO YOU THINK THE DESIRED POLICY OUTCOME OF THIS REASON SHOULD BE?
To reduce the burden from child support payers who provide financial support for stepchildren who live with them when one parent is deceased or due to ill health cannot provide financial support to their children.
Currently when a parent declares a new relationship, the FAO effectlvely takes the benefits received by that parent for their children and gives them to the new partner by using the new partner's and parent's income to determine the level of benefits. The parent then has to negotiate financial expenditure decisions with the new partner for their children. If the new partner is a child support payer then their ability to provide financial support for their children is significantly reduced due to having to make up the shortfall of any family benefits lost by their income being used to determine step children's Family Benefits as well as having a duty to support their new spouse.
HOW COULD THIS REASON BE MADE SIMPLER?
By narrowing the legislation to assess the application when one parent is deceased or due to ill health cannot provide financial support to their children.
By changing FAO determination of Family Benefits from stepparents incomes to only use the incomes of parents of biological children regardless where children live.
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