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Scotland Act 1998


The subject-matter of sections 1 to 7 of the Family Law (Scotland) Act 1985, which deal with aliment, is excepted from the reservation.  Without a specific exception it may have been doubtful whether or not aliment was a reserved matter.  Aliment, as explained above, is that part of Scots private law which deals with the obligations of one person to pay maintenance in respect of children and others.  Without the specific exception, the reservation of the Child Support Acts may have restricted unduly the Scottish Parliament’s competence to legislate in relation to the law on aliment because those Acts confer powers on the Secretary of State to collect the Scottish form of maintenance such as aliment, as well as child support maintenance.  However, the reservation of child support does not prevent the Scottish Parliament from having competence to legislate about aliment.

The interpretation section ensures that if section 30(2) of the Child Support Act 1991, which deals with the collection of payments other than child support maintenance, is not in force on the principal appointed day (1 July 1999), then it is nevertheless to be treated as if it were a part of the subject-matter of the 1991 Act and therefore a reserved matter. Section 30(2) was not in force on 1 July 1999.

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