Child Support Guide Updates - 2013

19 December 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
2.1.1 Applications for assessment Updated to provide further guidance about factors to consider when establishing if a person is living with their partner on a genuine domestic basis.
2.1.2 Eligible child Updated to provide further guidance about factors to consider when establishing if a person is living with their partner on a genuine domestic basis.
2.4.7 The basic formula - a single case assessment (Formula 1) Updated to provide further guidance about factors to consider when establishing if a person is living with their partner on a genuine domestic basis.
2.5.2 Additional income earned post separation Updated to provide further guidance about factors to consider when establishing if a person is living with their partner on a genuine domestic basis.
2.6.16 Reason 10 - responsibility of the parent to maintain a resident child Updated to provide further guidance about factors to consider when establishing if a person is living with their partner on a genuine domestic basis.
2.10.1 Suspension of liability to pay child support when parents reconcile Updated to provide further guidance about factors to consider when establishing if a person is living with their partner on a genuine domestic basis.
2.10.3 Terminating events Updated to provide further guidance about factors to consider when establishing if a person is living with their partner on a genuine domestic basis.

18 November 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
2.4.2 Formula tables and values Updated with 2014 basic values including 2014 costs of children table.
2.4.11 Fixed annual rate of child support for certain low income parents Updated with 2014 fixed annual rate.
2.4.12 The minimum annual rate of child support Updated with 2014 minimum annual rate.
3.4.3 CPI indexation for cost of living Updated with CPI figures for September quarter 2013.
5.2.4 Employer obligations for collection from salary or wages Updated with 2014 weekly protected earnings amount.
5.2.11 Departure prohibition orders Clarified policy on issuing a DAC on humanitarian grounds or in Australia's interests, added information about notification requirements and service requirements and clarified that a DPO does not prevent travel to Australia's external territories.

8 November 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
2.6.1 When can the Registrar consider changing an assessment? Clarification provided regarding methods of making an application for change of assessment.
2.6.2 What are the reasons for a change of assessment? Removed references to the term 'legal duty' regarding reason 9.
2.6.4 Kinds of change of assessment decisions Provides information about change of circumstance when a COA decision is in place, including examples to clarify when we would no longer give effect to the COA decision and when a new COA application would be required.
2.6.5 Change of assessment process - application from payer or payee Provides further information about when a COA application, response or accompanying documents contain offensive material. Clarifies the circumstances in which a customer may request a face to face COA conference.
2.6.7 Reason 1 - high costs in enabling a parent to spend time with, or communicate with, a child Provides further guidance about how to apportion the high costs of contact between the parents when changing the assessment under this reason.
2.7.1 What is a child support agreement? Provides information about when the Registrar will consider that independent legal advice has not been received prior to parents entering into a binding child support agreement.
2.8.2 Implementing court orders that vary assessments Clarifies that a consent order is an order made by a court and not a child support agreement.
4.3.3 Implementing court orders made under the child support legislation Clarifies that a consent order is an order made by a court and not a child support agreement.
6.2.1 Information need not be in writing Clarification provided regarding methods of making an application for change of assessment.

18 October 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
2.6.8 Reason 2 - the special needs of the child Provides information about the treatment of financial assistance received under the National Disability Insurance Scheme for COA purposes. Provides information about one-off payments payable by Centrelink to assist with the costs of a child's disability.
2.6.13 Reason 7 - necessary commitments of self-support Provides information about the treatment of financial assistance received under the National Disability Insurance Scheme for COA purposes.
2.6.17 Would a change be just and equitable? Provides information about the treatment of financial assistance received under the National Disability Insurance Scheme for COA purposes.
2.7.4 Effect of a child support agreement once accepted by the Registrar Includes changes to policy on how estimates of income should apply when making and varying a provisional notional assessment.
3.4.3 CPI indexation for cost of living Added CPI figures for June quarter 2013. Added the unconverted CPI figures published by the ABS and an example.

20 September 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
2.5.5 Application to have an assessment continue past a child's 18th birthday Clarified that the consequences to a customer of not making an application to extend their child support (for example, changes to their FTB) are not grounds for considering that there are exceptional circumstances.
3.6.2 Registering overseas maintenance liabilities for collection Clarified when overseas maintenance liabilities will not be registered.
5.1.2 Registrable maintenance liabilities and how they are registered Clarified when overseas maintenance liabilities will not be registered.

13 September 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
6.3.3 Secrecy provisions Clarified what information may be disclosed to a customer's authorised representative.
6.3.6 Customers authorised representatives Clarified what information may be disclosed to a customer's authorised representative.

22 July 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
4.1.0 Objections Updated 4.1.4 Chapter heading and added 4.1.8 Chapter heading.
4.1.1 Overview Removed references to 'valid' objections.
4.1.2 Decisions made under the Assessment Act to which a parent may object Moved most content regarding care percentage decisions to a new Chapter 4.1.8.
4.1.4 Can an objection decision be made? Removed references to 'valid' objections. Clarified that an objection decision must be made where specified criteria are met, better aligned the criteria and clarified the process if a customer does not clearly state the grounds for their objection.
4.1.6 Making a decision to allow or disallow an objection Updated to reflect that information about care percentage decisions is now located in Chapter 4.1.8.
4.1.8 Care percentage decisions New chapter containing information on objections to care percentage decisions. Clarified the process if a customer does not clearly state the grounds for their objection.

21 June 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
2.4.4 Child support income Updated to provide guidance with respect to taxable incomes that are amended due to ATO error. Clarification added regarding parents who are not required to lodge a tax return.
2.5.5 Application to have an assessment continue past a child's 18th birthday Information provided about a parent's option to seek a change of assessment under Reason 9 where an assessment is not extended after the child's 18th birthday and their capacity to support another child of the assessment is significantly reduced by their duty to maintain the adult child.
2.6.3 A decision to refuse to change an assessment Updated to clarify what happens when the Registrar has no power to make a decision on an application.
2.6.9 Reason 3 - high costs of caring for, educating or training the child in the manner expected by the parents Updated to provide further information about considering evidence relating to parents' expectations regarding the child's education or care.
2.6.14 Reason 8 - a parent's income, property, financial resources, or earning capacity Updated with minor changes in response to feedback. Clarified consideration of pensions, allowances and benefits (including FTB payments) when determining a parent's income and financial resources. More guidance provided regarding self-employment and treatment of business expenses and losses including depreciation.
2.7.1 What is a child support agreement? Binding agreement information updated regarding legal advice requirements.
3.4.3 CPI indexation for cost of living Added CPI figures for March quarter 2013.
6.8.0 Offences and prosecution Updated the amount of a penalty unit from $110 to $170.
6.8.7 Prosecution of offences Updated the amount of a penalty unit from $110 to $170.

7 June 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
1.2.1 Amendments to the Registration and Collection Act Updated to reflect the change from 'Federal Magistrates Court' to 'Federal Circuit Court'. Other chapters updated with this change include 1.2.2, 2.2.1, 2.2.8, 4.1.6, 4.3.1, 4.3.2, 4.3.6, 4.3.7, 5.2.11, 5.4.1, 5.4.4, 5.4.5, 5.4.7 and 6.4.1.
2.2.1 Basics of care Information about statements from third parties has been updated to make it clear that inferred consent to contact third parties only applies when they have provided written statements.
2.6.15 Reason 9 - the duty to maintain any other child or another person Updated to provide further information regarding a duty to maintain a de facto partner and guidance about factors to consider when establishing if a person is living with their partner on a genuine domestic basis.
3.4.0 Variations to court orders Title updated.
4.2.4 Time limit on applications for SSAT review Information added about applying for an extension of time.
4.2.5 The SSAT review process Information added about family violence, when an application may be dismissed and submissions from other parties.
5.1.5 Payment periods and payment of child support debts Updated information about when Payer Account Statements issue.
5.2.8 Tax refund intercepts Updated references to the Education Tax Refund.
6.3.4 Collection and use of third party information Information about statements from third parties updated to be consistent with 2.2.1.

10 May 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
2.4.2 Formula tables and values Updated with the AWE figure for 2012.
2.5.5 Application to have an assessment continue past a child's 18th birthday Updated to highlight the possible implications if a customer fails to extend their assessment when a child turns 18 and is in full time secondary study.
2.6.4 Kinds of change of assessment decisions Clarifies that a COA decision cannot usually vary an assessment to less than the minimum annual rate.
2.6.5 Change of assessment process Updated to provide further guidance regarding representation in the COA process. Updated to provide clarification about child support agreements and COA applications to vary a provisional notional assessment.
2.6.6 Registrar-initiated change of assessment Updated to provide further guidance regarding representation in the COA process.
2.7.1 What is a child support agreement? Clarifies operation of the 'quantum test' when accepting a limited child support agreement. Clarifies where a limited child support agreement may cause the overall roles of paying and receiving parents to reverse.
2.7.4 Effectof a child support agreement once accepted by the Registrar Updatedto provide guidance regarding multiple provisional notional assessments and an example added regarding circumstances where a new provisional notionalassessment will issue.
2.7.5 Changing or terminating a child support agreement Additional guidance provided about terminating a limited child support agreement where a notional assessment differs by more than 15% in 'circumstances not contemplated by the agreement'.
6.3.1 Privacy Act Updated to specify that privacy information is available on the Department of Human Services website.
6.3.6 Customers authorised representatives Updated to provide further guidance regarding representation in the COA process.

5 April 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
2.6.3 A decision to refuse to change an assessment Clarifies that if issues relating to any one of the 10 COA reasons are too complex to be decided, the Registrar must determine that the whole COA application is too complex.
2.6.6 Registrar-initiated change of assessment Includes a new section about Registrar refusals to make a change of assessment if the issues are too complex. Clarifies the limited circumstances where a person can act for a parent and participate in the COA process.
3.1.5 Spousal and de facto maintenance orders Includes a new section about de facto maintenance orders made under the Family Court of WA.
3.1.6 Court-registered agreements, financial agreements and parenting plans Includes a new section about de facto financial agreements under the FLA.

15 March 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
3.4.3 CPI indexation for cost of living Updated with CPI figures for December 2012.
2.5.5 Application to have an assessment continue past a child's 18th birthday Updated to clarify when an extended assessment will end.

1 March 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
1.2.2 Amendments to the Assessment Act Updated to include recent amendments relating to s107 declarations, AWE and WA ex-nuptial cases.
1.4.3 Application of the Assessment Act to WA ex-nuptial cases Updated to include recent amendments for WA ex-nuptial cases.
2.4.2 Formula tables and values Updated to reflect recent amendments regarding AWE.
2.4.4 Child support income Updated to reflect recent amendments regarding AWE. Also clarified when pensions and benefits are included as income, and the effect of amended ATO incomes on income estimates.
2.5.5 Application to have an assessment continue past a child's 18th birthday Updated to clarify whether an application can be accepted for a child who turns 18 during a holiday period or who repeats a year of secondary education. Also clarified who can make an application and when an application can be accepted for an agreement to continue.
2.6.1 When can the Registrar consider changing an assessment? Updated to clarify that an assessment can be changed when one of the 10 reasons is established and it would be just and equitable and otherwise proper.
4.1.4 What is a valid objection? Updated to clarify who may lodge an objection.

8 February 2013

Chapter Title Summary of update
2.7.1 What is a child support agreement? Updated to improve structure and links updated.
2.7.4 Effect of a child support agreement once accepted Removed out-dated content regarding income estimates being reliant on child support periods.
4.1.2 Decisions made under the Assessment Act to which a parent may object An example of special circumstances added.