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Domestic Proceedings and Magistrates' Courts Act 1978

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

20Variation, revival and revocation of orders for periodical payments

(1)Where a magistrates' court has made an order under section 2(1)(a) or (c) of this Act for the making of periodical payments the court shall have power, on an application made under this section, to vary or revoke that order and also to make an order under section 2(1)(b) or (d) of this Act.

(2)Where a magistrates' court has made an order under section 6 of this Act for the making of periodical payments, the court shall have power, on an application made under this section, to vary or revoke that order so far as it relates to the making of periodical payments and, if that order also provided for the payment of a lump sum by one of the parties to the marriage in question, the court shall also have power on such an application to make an order for the payment of a further lump sum by that party either—

(a)to the other party to the marriage, or

(b)to a child of the family or to that other party for the benefit of that child.

(3)Where a magistrates' court has made an order under section 7 of this Act for the making of periodical payments, the court shall have power, on an application made under this section, to vary or revoke that order.

(4)Where a magistrates' court has made an order under section 11(2)(a), (3)(a) or (4) of this Act for the making of periodical payments, the court shall have power, on an application made under this section, to vary or revoke that order and also, in the case of an application relating to an order under section 11(2)(a) or (3)(a) of this Act, to make an order under section 11(2)(b) or 11(3)(b) of this Act, as the case may be.

(5)Where a magistrates' court has made an interim maintenance order under section 19 of this Act, the court, on an application made under this section, shall have power to vary or revoke that order, except that the court shall not by virtue of this subsection extend the period for which the order is in force.

(6)The power of the court under this section to vary an order for the making of periodical payments shall include power to suspend any provision thereof temporarily and to revive any provision so suspended.

(7)Where the court has power by virtue of this section to make an order for the payment of a lump sum, the amount of the lump sum shall not exceed the maximum amount that may at that time be required to be paid under section 2(3) of this Act, but the court may make an order for the payment of a lump sum not exceeding that amount notwithstanding that the person required to pay the lump sum was required to pay a lump sum by a previous order under this Part of this Act.

(8)Where the court has power by virtue of subsection (2) above to make an order for the payment of a lump sum and the respondent has agreed to pay a lump sum of an amount exceeding the maximum amount that may at that time be required to be paid under section 2(3) of this Act, the court may, notwithstanding anything in subsection (7) above, make an order for the payment of a lump sum of that amount.

(9)An order made by virtue of this section which varies an order for the making of periodical payments may, subject to the provisions of section 11(8) of this Act, provide that the payments as so varied shall be made from such date as the court may specify, not being earlier than the date of the making of the application under this section.

(10)Where an order made by a magistrates' court under this Part of this Act for the making of periodical payments to or in respect of a child ceases to have effect on the date on which the child attains the age of sixteen or at any time after that date but before or on the date on which he attains the age of eighteen, then, if at any time before he attains the age of twenty-one an application is made by the child for an order under this subsection, the court shall have power by order to revive the first mentioned order from such date as the court may specify, not being earlier than the date of the making of the application.

(11)In exercising the powers conferred by this section the court shall, so far as it appears to the court just to do so, give effect to any agreement which has been reached between the parties in relation to the application and, if there is no such agreement or if the court decides not to give effect to the agreement, the court shall have regard to all the circumstances of the case, including any change in any of the matters to which the court was required to have regard when making the order to which the application relates or, in the case of an application for the variation or revocation of an order made under section 6 of this Act or on an appeal under section 29 of this Act, to which the court would have been required to have regard if that order had been made under section 2 of this Act.

(12)An application under this section for the variation or revocation of an order for periodical payments may be made by the following persons, that is to say—

(a)in the case of an order under section 2, 6, 7, 11(2)(a) or 19 of this Act, by either party to the marriage in question,

(b)in the case of an order under section 11(3)(a) of this Act for the making of periodical payments where the legal custody of a child of the family is given to a person who is a parent of that child but not a party to the marriage in question, by that parent or by the party to the marriage by whom the payments are required to be made, and

(c)in the case of an order under section 11(4) of this Act for the making of periodical payments where a child of the family is committed to the care of a local authority, by that local authority or by the party to the marriage by whom the payments are required to be made,

and an application for the variation of an order made under section 2(1)(c), 6, 7 or 11(2), (3) or (4) of this Act for the making of periodical payments to or in respect of a child may, if the child has attained the age of sixteen, be made by the child himself.

(13)Any reference in this section to an order made under section 2, 6, 7 or 11 of this Act for the making of periodical payments includes a reference to such an order made under the said section 2, 6, 7 or 11 as the case may be, and revived under subsection (10) above.

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