Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission will have absolute power

June 7, 2008

Later this year the CSA, child support agency, becomes the new Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission (C-MEC). This new body will have even more power than the CSA, giving them power to take money directly from people’s bank accounts, impose curfews, seize money from the sale of property and confiscate passports.

Given the mistakes the CSA have already made, this could mean thousands of fathers in the UK being wrongfully penalised with little hope of resolution. The powers that are being endowed upon the new Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission are similar to the sort of powers that are saved for anti-terrorism bodies.

Fathers are being treated like terrorist. All they want is to be a part of their children’s lives.

The Government’s bill is currently working its way through Parliament, and could be successful within a few weeks.

While the CSA has been dogged by mistakes and incompetence since its creation in 1993, replacing it with an even more powerful body seems like asking for trouble.

Kim Fellowes is a solicitor based in the North East, and she warns against these powers coming into play.

These new powers will affect every single family going through separation in the North-East.

For fathers, this means the safety net of the court has been removed. Someone might not agree that they have been sent to prison for a criminal offence, but at least they know they have been tried before a court.

The difference here is that there is no court scrutiny.

And if the father believes he is being unfairly pursued or harassed, that could mean a severe backlash for the mother as she will get the blame. The risk is that even a separation that was previously fairly amicable could become strained.

The problem is that if the new body has more powers than the CSA, the errors will stay the same but the consequences of those errors will be magnified. In the early days of the CSA, a report found errors in a staggering 86% of cases!

Even though improvements were promised, little was done as a Nation Audit Office report made in 2006 found that 20% of all payments made to the CSA were inaccurate. Should these mistakes continue with the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission, they could breach human rights.


  • mobey says:

    The CSA breach our human rights already, they even break the law themselves, do not adhere to their own guidelines and lie to NRPs in order to recoup more money, and all so that James Plaskitt can say the CSA have raked in extra revenue and given more money to children who need it. However reading the Government White Paper the Child Support Agency was asked to provide evidence of how much money they recovered was paid to the Children it was intended for.. the CSAs response was they could not give a figure because money was coming and going all the time.
    Sorry folks but they should be able to calculate how much money went to the correct children that was taken from their fathers, folks this is just a smoke screen, the same as the smoke screen they hide behind when telling the British Public that the CSA is there to reduce child poverty, after doing a lot of research and contacting loads of Child Poverty organisations the response I got was that child poverty was not down to Divorce or Seperation. Again this Government is lying and we need to stop this right now before this CMEC gets in because the suicide list of Divorced fathers is going to jump into the hundreds if not thousands. Join the Dead Beat Dads Association and lets get the campaign running and show the CSA and this Draconian Rip Off Government we are not going to stand for it any more ENOUGH IS ENOUGH

  • […] reported on the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission yesterday, and how they would have more power than the much maligned Child Support Agency. […]

  • matthew says:

    my 3 children i live with are being forced into poverty by the csa… they want half of our tax credits for my ex partner with my 2 children ,, discusting goverment we have im affraid. my wife now wants to leave our home and go on her own back into a councill house and back on benifits which will cost the tax payer more .. we were given this advise by somone who has done this and are now better of and living better …. what a good idea .. so declare splitting up live appart have seperate claims ,, then the csa cant starve your kids that you live with to feed your exes kids with caviar .. or ex partner with new shoes and hair… we are just looking into it now as we have had enough

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