Family Law - Child Support
Generally child support is determined by way of fixed calculations made by a formula found within the Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989 (Cth). The formula considers a number of factors including percentage of care each party has of the child and the parties incomes. Parties are legally bound by the child support calculations determined by this formula where there is no Binding Child Support Agreement.
Separated parents are able to determine their own child support arrangements outside of the calculations prescribed in the Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989 (Cth) by entering into a Binding Child Support Agreement. The benefit of these agreements is that parties can tailor their child support arrangements to suit their own personal circumstances.
A Binding Child Support Agreement is a written document signed by both parties detailing the arrangements for child support about the relevant children. The agreement can deal with both periodic payments and non-periodic payments such as school fees, health-care and extra-curricular activities.
The persons able to enter into a Binding Child Support Agreement include any relevant person with care of a child including parents and guardians.
Requirements for Binding Child Support Agreements
In order to enter into a Binding Child Support Agreement each party must obtain independent legal advice and be provided with a certificate confirming this advice. The Child Support Agency (“the Agency”) must also be liaised with in order to ensure the agreement is accepted by the Agency. The document itself must also be drafted in a specific format and executed and witnessed in a specific manner.
Bainbridge Legal is able to assist in all aspects of a Binding Child Support Agreement including the drafting of Binding Child Support Agreement, providing the certificate of advice required to formalise the Binding Child Support Agreement and liaising with the Child Support Agency to ensure the agreement is accepted and effectively implemented.