The Child Maintenance Service (CMS) is a part of the Department for Communities. Its aim is to make sure that parents who live apart from their children contribute towards their upkeep by paying child maintenance.
Employers play an important role, working in partnership with CMS, in helping parents meet the financial responsibility of bringing up their children. That role could involve:
- helping CMS to collect information about your employees so that they can work out child maintenance
- setting up Deduction from Earnings Orders
- responding to enquiries from the organisations CMS uses to collect payments of child maintenance on its behalf
This guide highlights the three different schemes which the CMS currently runs and your legal obligations as an employer for collecting child maintenance from your employees, often referred to as paying parents.
It will also explain how you should make deductions from earnings and how to send payments to CMS.