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The Child Support(Northern Ireland) Order 1991

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This is the original version (as it was originally made).

Child support maintenance

7.—(1) A person who is, in relation to any qualifying child or any qualifying children, either the person with care or the absent parent may apply to the Department for a maintenance assessment to be made under this Order with respect to that child, or any of those children.

(2) Where a maintenance assessment has been made in response to an application under this Article the Department may, if the persons with care or absent parent with respect to whom the assessment was made applies to it under this paragraph, arrange for—

(a)the collection of the child support maintenance payable in accordance with the assessment;

(b)the enforcement of the obligation to pay child support maintenance in accordance with the assessment.

(3) Where an application under paragraph (2) for the enforcement of the obligation mentioned in paragraph (2)(b) authorises the Department to take steps to enforce that obligation whenever it considers it necessary to do so, the Department may act accordingly.

(4) A person who applies to the Department under this Article shall, so far as that person reasonably can, comply with such regulations as may be made by the Department with a view to the Department or the child support officer being provided with the information which is required to enable—

(a)the absent parent to be traced (where that is necessary);

(b)the amount of child support maintenance payable by the absent parent to be assessed; and

(c)that amount to be recovered from the absent parent.

(5) Any person who has applied to the Department under this Article may at any time request it to cease acting under this Article.

(6) It shall be the duty of the Department to comply with any request made under paragraph (5) (but subject to any regulations made under paragraph (8)).

(7) The obligation to provide information which is imposed by paragraph (4)—

(a)shall not apply in such circumstances as may be prescribed; and

(b)may, in such circumstances as may be prescribed, be waived by the Department.

(8) The Department may by regulations make such incidental, supplemental or transitional provision as it thinks appropriate with respect to cases in which it is requested to cease to act under this Article.

(9) No application may be made under this Article if there is in force with respect to the person with care and absent parent in question a maintenance assessment made in response to an application under Article 9.

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