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Child Support

Volume 404: debated on Wednesday 30 April 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) whether the Child Support Agency is able to make deduction from earnings orders against liable persons where their address is not known but their employer is known; and in how many cases this has been done; [109888](2) whether the Child Support Agency is able to make deduction from earnings orders against liable persons rot resident in the United Kingdom but employed by a company based or registered in the United Kingdom; and in how many cases this has been done. [109889]

To make a deductions from earnings order the Child Support Agency needs only to know the name and address of the employer which must be registered in the UK; not necessarily based in the UK. Before the Deductions from Earnings Order is made the non-resident parent must be notified of his child support maintenance liability and any arrears. This may be done via his employer, for example if no home address is known. The non-resident parent must also be notified by his employer of the amounts to be deducted from earnings.We do not have information available to identify such cases. There are around 9,000 non-resident parents with a deductions from earnings order for whom the agency does not hold a valid postcode, these will include cases where the non-resident parent lives abroad.

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what procedures are in place to claim child support from liable persons not resident in the United Kingdom; and in how many cases these have been applied. [109890]

A non-resident parent who is not habitually resident in the United Kingdom but works for a company whose payroll is based in the UK may be liable for child support under the Child Support Act 1991. Wholly reliable information is not available; the best estimate is that in 2002–03 the Child Support Agency was able take such action in fewer than 200 cases. In other cases child maintenance can be applied for through the relevant courts in the country where the non-resident parent resides.