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Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1988

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351Small maintenance payments

(1)In this section “small maintenance payments” means payments under an order made by a court in the United Kingdom—

(a)by one of the parties to a marriage (including a marriage which has been dissolved or annulled) to or for the benefit of the other party to that marriage for that other party’s maintenance,

(b)to any person under 21 years of age for his own benefit, maintenance or education, or

(c)to any person for the benefit, maintenance or education of a person under 21 years of age,

in respect of which the two conditions mentioned in subsection (2) below are satisfied; and “small maintenance order” means an order providing for the making of small maintenance payments.

(2)The first of the conditions referred to in subsection (1) above is—

(a)in the case of payments falling within paragraph (a) of that subsection, that the order for the time being requires them to be made—

(i)weekly at a rate not exceeding £48 per week, or

(ii)monthly at a rate not exceeding £208 per month;

(b)in the case of payments falling within paragraph (b) (but not within paragraph (a)) of that subsection, that the order for the time being requires them to be made—

(i)weekly at a rate not exceeding £48 per week, or

(ii)monthly at a rate not exceeding £208 per month;

(c)in the case of payments falling within paragraph (c) (but not within paragraph (a) or (b)) of that subsection, that the order for the time being requires them to be made—

(i)weekly at a rate not exceeding £25 per week, or

(ii)monthly at a rate not exceeding £108 per month;

and the second of those conditions is that the payments would fall within section 348 or 349(1), apart from subsection (3) of each of those sections and subsection (3) below.

(3)Small maintenance payments shall be made without deduction of income tax.

(4)Any sums paid in or towards the discharge of a small maintenance payment shall be chargeable under Case III of Schedule D, but the tax shall (notwithstanding anything in sections 64 to 67) be computed in all cases on the payments falling due in the year of assessment, so far as paid in that or any other year.

(5)A person making a claim in that behalf shall be entitled, in computing his total income for any year of assessment for any of the purposes of the Income Tax Acts, to deduct sums paid by him in or towards the discharge of any small maintenance payments which fall due in that year; and, for the purposes of section 276, any amount which can be deducted under this subsection in computing the total income of a person shall be treated as if it were income the tax on which that person is entitled to charge against another person.

(6)The Treasury may from time to time by order increase any, or all, of the amounts for the time being specified in subsection (2) above.

(7)An order under subsection (6) above which increases the amount for the time being specified in sub-paragraph (i) of paragraph (a), (b) or (c) of subsection (2) above shall increase the amount for the time being specified in sub-paragraph (ii) of that paragraph so that it is 52 twelfths of the amount specified in sub-paragraph (i) by virtue of the order or, if that does not give a convenient round sum, such other amount as appears to the Treasury to be the nearest convenient round sum; and an order under that subsection may contain provision whereby it—

(a)does not in general affect payments falling due in the year of assessment in which it comes into force under small maintenance orders made before its coming into force, but

(b)in the case of a small maintenance order which was made before that time but is varied or revived after that time, does apply in relation to payments falling due under that order at any time after the variation or revival.

(8)Where a court—

(a)makes or revives a small maintenance order, or

(b)varies or revives an order so that it becomes, or ceases to be, a small maintenance order, or

(c)changes the persons who are entitled to small maintenance payments,

the court shall furnish to the Board, in such form as the Board may prescribe, particulars of the order or variation, as the case may be, the names of the persons affected by the order, and, so far as is known to the court, the addresses of those persons.

In this subsection—

(i)“the persons affected”, in relation to a small maintenance order, means the person liable to make the payments under the order and any person for the time being entitled to the payments, and

(ii)references to the variation of an order include references to the making of an order changing the persons entitled to the payments under it.

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