Child maintenance scheme to replace CMEC

December 13, 2010

The Child Support Agency is set for major reform following an announcement by the government that the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission (CMEC) will be closed down.

The revelation was made by the UK governing body in October, following a major assessment of its quangos to trim government outgoings.

Over the coming months, the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission will become an agency within the Department for Work and Pensions. However, it will not affect the overall running of the service, nor will it alter proposed plans to replace the institution eventually with a new child maintenance scheme.

The Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission replaced the traditional Child Support Agency in 2009 in an effort to more effectively collect outstanding maintenance payments from non-resident parents. However, the organisation is still known colloquially under its CSA banner.

Governmental reform came about following a National Audit Office study, which revealed that there were £3.5 billion in uncollected maintenance payments between 1993 and 2006. There were also concerns over the effectiveness of the CSA’s administration, as it cost the Child Support Agency 70p for every pound it collected.

Westminster statistics released in summer 2010, however, revealed that there are still large sums of unpaid maintenance to be addressed, as more than £32 million is owing in child support within the UK’s constituencies.

Stephen Geraghty, commissioner of the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission, commented:

“We recognise that diversity is about flexibility and continuous improvement…as we start to develop the future statutory scheme that will operate from 2011 we will increase our engagement with client representatives and stakeholders to help us identify improvements so that we develop services to meet the diverse needs of our clients.”


  • Allan Morrell says:

    The government supports child abuse, that is why they created CSA!!!

  • Jody Langton says:

    Maggie Thatcher has a hell of a lot to answer for!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Allan Morrell says:

    the current government has a lot to answer for by continuation of Maggies Utopia for mothers!!!!

  • Jody Langton says:

    very true. Isn't it amazing that the only time the government change the law is if something bad happens to one of them

  • rupi josh says:

    Well, having seen how CMEC and the CSA work its not surprising. We had 12 letters – all conflicting – within a single week. They said anything from you have made overpayments of over £2K to you owe £12K in arrears. More to the point, they allow my husband’s ex wife – who lives in eastern europe – to apply over and over again- despite having been told that a) there is a court order that is less than a year old in place b) where she lives. Its stressful to say the least, especially since we don’t have alot of money coming in, with me being on maternity leave and my husband just having lost his job. We can’t budget based on what the CSA will send next week. This is sanctioned harassment and I hope that the CSA/CMEC is shut down for good and that there are more hurdles for PWC to have to go through before they can use child maintenance as a way of punishing the NRP.

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