Child Support, Pensions and Social Security Bill - continued        House of Commons

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Voluntary payments.     20. - (1) After section 28I of the 1991 Act there shall be inserted-
Voluntary payments
Voluntary payments.     28J. - (1) This section applies where-
    (a) a person has applied for a maintenance calculation under section 4(1) or 7(1), or is treated as having applied for one by virtue of section 6;
    (b) the Secretary of State has neither made a decision under section 11 or 12 on the application, nor decided not to make a maintenance calculation; and
    (c) the non-resident parent makes a voluntary payment.
      (2) A "voluntary payment" is a payment-
    (a) on account of child support maintenance which the non-resident parent expects to become liable to pay following the determination of the application (whether or not the amount of the payment is based on any estimate of his potential liability which the Secretary of State has agreed to give); and
    (b) made before the maintenance calculation has been notified to the non-resident parent or (as the case may be) before the Secretary of State has notified the non-resident parent that he has decided not to make a maintenance calculation.
      (3) In such circumstances and to such extent as may be prescribed-
    (a) the voluntary payment may be set off against arrears of child support maintenance which accrued by virtue of the maintenance calculation taking effect on a date earlier than that on which it was notified to the non-resident parent;
    (b) the amount payable under a maintenance calculation may be adjusted to take account of the voluntary payment.
      (4) A voluntary payment shall be made to the Secretary of State unless he agrees, on such conditions as he may specify, that it may be made to the person with care, or to or through another person.
      (5) The Secretary of State may by regulations make provision as to voluntary payments, and the regulations may in particular-
    (a) prescribe what payments or descriptions of payment are, or are not, to count as "voluntary payments";
    (b) prescribe the extent to which and circumstances in which a payment, or a payment of a prescribed description, counts.
      (2) Section 41B of the 1991 Act (repayment of overpaid child support maintenance) shall be amended as follows.
      (3) After subsection (1) there shall be inserted-
      (1A) This section also applies where the non-resident parent has made a voluntary payment and it appears to the Secretary of State-
    (a) that he is not liable to pay child support maintenance; or
    (b) that he is liable, but some or all of the payment amounts to an overpayment,
  and, in a case falling within paragraph (b), it also appears to him that subsection (1)(a) or (b) applies.
      (4) For subsection (7) there shall be substituted-
      (7) For the purposes of this section-
    (a) a payment made by a person under a maintenance calculation which was not validly made; and
    (b) a voluntary payment made in the circumstances set out in subsection (1A)(a),
  shall be treated as an overpayment of child support maintenance made by a non-resident parent.
Recovery of child support maintenance by deduction from benefit.     21. For section 43 of the 1991 Act (contribution to maintenance by deduction from benefit) there shall be substituted-
Recovery of child support maintenance by deduction from benefit.     43. - (1) This section applies where-
    (a) a non-resident parent is liable to pay a flat rate of child support maintenance (or would be so liable but for a variation having been agreed to), and that rate applies (or would have applied) because he falls within paragraph 4(1)(b) or (c) or 4(2) of Schedule 1; and
    (b) such conditions as may be prescribed for the purposes of this section are satisfied.
      (2) The power of the Secretary of State to make regulations under section 5 of the Social Security Administration Act 1992 by virtue of subsection (1)(p) (deductions from benefits) may be exercised in relation to cases to which this section applies with a view to securing that payments in respect of child support maintenance are made or that arrears of child support maintenance are recovered.
      (3) For the purposes of this section, the benefits to which section 5 of the 1992 Act applies are to be taken as including war disablement pensions and war widows' pensions (within the meaning of section 150 of the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992 (interpretation)).
Jurisdiction.     22. - (1) Section 44 of the 1991 Act (jurisdiction) shall be amended as follows.
      (2) In subsection (1), after "United Kingdom" there shall be inserted ", except in the case of a non-resident parent who falls within subsection (2A)".
      (3) After subsection (2) there shall be inserted-
      (2A) A non-resident parent falls within this subsection if he is not habitually resident in the United Kingdom, but is-
    (a) employed in the civil service of the Crown, including Her Majesty's Diplomatic Service and Her Majesty's Overseas Civil Service;
    (b) a member of the naval, military or air forces of the Crown, including any person employed by an association established for the purposes of Part XI of the Reserve Forces Act 1996;
    (c) employed by a company of a prescribed description registered under the Companies Act 1985 in England and Wales or in Scotland, or under the Companies (Northern Ireland) Order 1986; or
    (d) employed by a body of a prescribed description.
      (4) Subsection (3) shall cease to have effect.
Abolition of the child maintenance bonus.     23. Section 10 of the Child Support Act 1995 (which provides for the child maintenance bonus) shall cease to have effect.
Periodical reviews.     24. Article 3(4) of the Social Security Act 1998 (Commencement No. 2) Order 1998 (which saved section 16 of the 1991 Act for certain purposes) is revoked; and accordingly that section shall cease to have effect for all purposes.
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