My Partner Is Not Paying Child Support.

7 November, 2014
by: Cripps Pemberton Greenish

Parents that no longer live together who do not pay child maintenance risk the threat of being turned down for credit cards and mortgages.

From March next year (if the new measure is approved by parliament), both the new Child Maintenance Service and the old Child Support Agency will be able to share details about the payment records of their clients with credit reference agencies. The data can then be used by financial firms to help them decide whether or not to offer someone credit.

Arrears built up in the child maintenance payments will potentially have the same impact on an individual’s credit rating as other debts. A poor credit rating can prevent someone from taking out a loan or mortgage. It can also cause people to be refused credit cards, mobile phone contracts and other forms of financial credit.

Principally, information will only be shared about an individual if a liability order has been made against them. It is therefore intended as a measure of last resort, as liability orders only take place in a minority of cases. Such orders occur where an application is made to court to recover the arrears of child maintenance.

It is hoped that the introduction of the new measure will have a deterrent effect on those who may otherwise choose to evade payments in order to get money flowing to the families that need it.

The new powers will also mean that parents who have a good record for payment of child maintenance will be able to ask to have that information shared to boost their credit rating.