Resolution Podcast #7 | Child support - in search of a simpler formula | w/ Rachel Spicer and James Pirrie


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In this episode, host Simon Blain talks to Rachel Spicer and James Pirrie about their approach to cases involving the Child Maintenance Service.

Jurisdiction of the CMS

1) Geography: The parent with care and child must be based in the United Kingdom – as
must (with some extensions) the non-resident parent
2) Age and stage: Broadly, the CMS has jurisdiction until the 31st of August in the year that the child completes their A-levels after A-levels, for those young people going on to university
3) Parentage: Applications can only be made for a qualifying child (s3 CSA ’91) as regards
“a parent”, which (per s54) means any person who is in law the mother or father of the
child. Thus natural 19 or adoptive parents 20 are in whilst step-parents, even those granted
parental responsibility or the object of a residence / child arrangement order are not.
4) Separation: Whilst the courts can make orders anticipating the separation of the parties,
only if separation has taken place does the CMS become able to receive an application for
provision (and it must follow that until this point, the court has a free hand to make an
5) Order: Finally there is the question whether the court has made an order or not. If
the court made an order i) Prior to 3rd March 2003; or ii) on or after 3/3/2003 but within the
previous six months then such an order excludes the CMS from involvement.

Further information and resources

Child Support Handbook -

More information

More information on this Resolution podcast:

Music credit: Hopefully Flies - Magnus Moone

9 episodes