Child Maintenance Disregard Update

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Minister for Social Protection, Heather Humphreys TD, has introduced landmark legislation aimed at reforming Ireland’s child maintenance system. The legislation, now signed into law by the President, brings about significant changes to support lone parents and reduce child poverty. Child Maintenance Disregard Update

Key Changes Introduced:

  1. Exclusion of Child Maintenance from Means Test:
    • Child Maintenance payments will no longer be considered in social welfare means tests.
    • Over 16,000 lone parents will benefit from this change, resulting in increased payments for many and qualification for payments for others.
    • Estimated cost: Approximately €10 million per year.
  2. Extension of Child Benefit:
    • From May 1st, Child Benefit will be extended to all 18-year-olds who are in full-time education.
    • Approximately 60,000 children annually will benefit from this extension.

Minister Humphreys’ Statement:

  • Minister Humphreys emphasized the importance of these reforms, calling them a landmark change in the child maintenance system.
  • She highlighted that excluding Child Maintenance payments from means tests will significantly benefit lone parents and play a crucial role in reducing child poverty.
  • Minister Humphreys shared her past experience, noting the inconsistency of child maintenance payments and the adverse effects it had on children.
  • Regarding the extension of Child Benefit, she clarified that payments will be reinstated for families whose children are 18 and still in full-time education, even if they were previously out of payment.
  • The Minister estimated that approximately 60,000 children will benefit annually from these changes.

Important Note: This legislation, originally due to be in place from May 1st, has been signed into law. However, there seems to be some confusion as the Department of Social Protection does not currently have all the necessary information.

1 thought on “Child Maintenance Disregard Update”

  1. How long are we supposed to wait for this to be sorted it’s 2 weeks now and I’ve been on to the department of social protection and they still have no idea when the current situation is going to change.

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