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Chid Maintenance put domestic abuse survivors in danger

Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, has called on the UK Government to “stop putting domestic abuse survivors at risk” and scrap the 4% “tax on child support” being introduced for processing child maintenance payments.

The Child Support Agency – which processes child maintenance payments between parents – is closing down and will be replaced by the Child Maintenance Service (CMS). Changes to how the service operates means that the parent caring for the children will either be charged a 4% collection fee (for administrative costs) for using the service or must give their bank details to the other parent directly in what is known as a “family-based” arrangement.

Survivors of domestic abuse have raised concerns about the unfair charges for the new CMS as in many cases they are too frightened to establish a family-based arrangement for fear that their abuser will be able to access other personal details.

Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, said:

“I am deeply concerned that this new system for paying child support completely ignores the realities facing survivors of domestic abuse. A lot of these families are separated from their abusive parent for obvious reasons and it’s not right that they will be taxed to use this new system for collecting Child Maintenance payments.

“Most of these families will rely on receiving this payment to help set up new lives for themselves and it’s insensitive for them to lose out on support due to a flawed administrative system.

“The Tories must look again at this unfair tax and listen to the cross-party calls to scrap it – ultimately, it will be the children that child maintenance payments are intended to support who will lose out.”

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