Consultation launched on changes to Child Maintenance enforcement and collection

Date published: 08 July 2024

A consultation on proposed legislative changes to enforcement and collection powers within the Child Maintenance Service has been launched by the Department for Communities.

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The Child Maintenance: Accelerating Enforcement (Administrative Liability Orders) consultation will run until Sunday 29 September 2024.

The proposals include the use of an administrative liability order to collect child maintenance from a person who has failed to pay child maintenance. A liability order is legal recognition of a debt and is required before the Child Maintenance Service can take enhanced enforcement actions against non-compliant parents to collect child maintenance.

The consultation is available on

A virtual consultation clinic will be held via an online webinar on Wednesday 17 July 2024 at 10.30am. Register your attendance by 12pm on Wednesday 10 July 2024 via   Survey Monkey

Notes to editors: 

  1. The Child Support Enforcement Bill to allow for the proposed new administrative liability order was Introduced in the Northern Ireland Assembly on 17 June 2024. The Bill’s Second Stage was successfully completed on 25 June 2024, and Committee Stage has now commenced. It is anticipated that the Bill will attain Royal Assent by the end of 2024, when it will then become the Child Support Enforcement Act (Northern Ireland) 2024.
  2. The new administrative liability order is intended to replace the current court-based liability order process, and substantially reduce the time it takes for the Child Maintenance Service to initiate its strongest enforcement powers.
  3. Information regarding the current Child Maintenance Service’s current payment methods and plans can be found at Child maintenance payment methods and plans | nidirect.
  4. Media enquiries to DfC Press Office
  5. Follow us on Twitter @CommunitiesNI
  6. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours service for media enquiries only between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press office can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.

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