Alignment of Care Determinations Across Centrelink and the Child Support Agency 

Key Elements

This measure provides for a single determination of care for both child support and Family Tax Benefit (FTB) purposes. Currently, care decisions are made by the Child Support Agency (CSA) for child support purposes while care decisions for FTB purposes are made by Centrelink. This can mean that Centrelink and the Child Support Agency recognise different levels of care for the same child.

Aligning the determinations of care between the CSA and Centrelink will provide consistency in decisions about the level of care being provided by separated parents for customers dealing with both agencies. This is expected to reduce objections and appeals flowing from the separate determinations in each agency.

The application of a single care determination for both child support and FTB will remove duplication of processes and decision making in CSA and Centrelink.

Provision for electronic transfer of care determinations between CSA and Centrelink IT systems will enable automatic updating of care information for both child support and FTB purposes thereby removing the need for customers to notify changes of care to both agencies.

Background

The Child Support Scheme aims to ensure that children receive a proper level of child support from their parents in accordance with their parents' capacity to provide financial support. Family Tax Benefit also assists with the costs of raising children.

Implementation

This measure will be implemented from 1 July 2010. It will apply to all new care determinations made on or after 1 July 2010. CSA and Centrelink will be making systems changes to provide for the automatic transfer of care determinations between each agency from July 2010.

Total Government Funding

$0.5m savings over four years from 2009-10 to 2012-13 due to administrative efficiencies.

Content Updated: 1 June 2012