It's time to change the Child Maintenance system to benefit the child, not the residential parent! sign now

We, the undersigned, believe that there needs to be changes made to the child maintenance laws, as currently they only serve to benefit the residential parent and can be manipulated by the residential parent without any requirement of proof. We believe that the following changes should be made:
1. Recognition that no one child is worth more than another.
We feel that the Child Support Agency should use a flat rate child maintenance where no overnight visitations are in place. Non-residential parents should have the right to work overtime in order to compensate what is taken as child maintenance, not punished for it. Nor should the non-residential parent be punished for being successful at their job and receiving a pay increase or promotion. An unemployed non-residential parent has only £5.00 a week taken from his benefits, yet the working non-residential parent has up to 25% of his wages taken. This hardly seems acceptable.
2. Residential parents should not have the right to prevent overnight visitations with the non-residential parent, unless they can give acceptable proof as to why.
The Child Support Agency claims that they will reduce child maintenance by 1/7 for every overnight visitation the non-residential parent has each week, yet right now the residential parent can refuse to allow the non-residential parent to have these overnight visitations, as it will reduce their child maintenance. If the non-residential parent has the ability to get the child to school on time, can provide adequate accommodations for the child and there is no foreseen harm then the residential parent has no grounds to refuse overnight visitations.
3. Shared Parenting of 3 nights a week should mean no child maintenance is paid.
The non-residential parent having 3 overnight visitations a week means that the residential parent only has the child for 1 additional night each week. While that is not exactly equal time spent with each parent, it should be acknowledged that the residential parent will be in receipt of ALL of the child benefits, which should cover the 1 additional night a week that the child spends with the residential parent. In this case the non-residential parent has nearly the same costs of providing for the child as the residential parent, without any of the child benefits that the residential parent is receiving, so child maintenance should not be necessary.
4. Financial ability to support the child should be taken into consideration when deciding who has residency of the child.
Currently it is always the mother who is granted residency of children, and as we have seen in the media over the last few years, mom is not necessarily the best caregiver simply because she is mom. Single mothers with more than one child living on benefits are not able to support their children independently. With housing benefits, her own benefits, the child benefits for each child and the father’s wages providing the all the money available in the household the unemployed single mother is not actually able to provide financially for the children at all. In these cases the mother should not automatically be given residency of a child. In the best interests of the child both parents should be considered and if the father has the ability to financially support the child, while the mother does not, then the father should be given residency of the child.

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Darren JonesBy:
Justice, rights and public orderIn:
Petition target:
Government

Petition community:
Non-residential parents

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