What financial provision can be made for children under  Schedule 1 of The Children Act 1989

by Kidd Rapinet on June 10, 2024
children and parent in garden

The Children Act of 1989, Schedule 1, was designed to give family courts the authority to provide for a child/children’s financial needs when the parents are not married and so financial provision cannot be made for them within a divorce settlement under the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973. For the purposes of the child’s resident parent making an application against the non-resident parent for financial support, a claim has to be lodged with the Court under schedule 1 Children Act 1989.

What does Schedule 1 of the Children Act 1989 provide for?

Financial support may be provided under Schedule 1 of the Children Act 1989 by way of the following: –

  1. Orders requiring a parent to make a lump sum payment, pay maintenance, or transfer property whilst the child is under the age of eighteen;
  1. Orders for periodic payments or a lump sum when the child is older than eighteen;
  2.  Modifications to maintenance agreements that include financial provisions for a child, which may occur during the parents’ joint lifetimes or after one of them passes away.

Any orders granted are solely for the benefit of the child, as stated in Schedule 1 of the Children Act 1989.

Who can apply for a claim under schedule 1 Children Act 1989?

Any parent, guardian, special guardian, or other person  with whom the child is living on a child arrangements order, may make a claim for financial support on the child’s behalf. A minor who has turned eighteen years old may also request an order under schedule 1 if:

  1. They are pursuing training for a trade, profession, or vocation;
  2. They are receiving instruction at an educational facility;
  3. There are special circumstances which justify the making of the order.

Against whom is a schedule 1 Children Act 1989 order made?

  • The other biological parent shall respond to a schedule 1 Children Act 1989 order. When the child in question is a child of the family, but not a biological child, it can apply to married couples as well as single parents.
  • There must be a connection between the respondent and the child in order for a schedule 1 order to be issued. This relationship needs to be biological or based on the respondents’ status as a married couple or civil partner.
  • If there is neither a biological relationship nor a civil partnership, an order cannot be made against a same-sex partner.

What factors does the court look at when considering Schedule 1 cases?

When considering a schedule 1 application, the court must take the following circumstances into account, under Section 4(1).

  • The income, earning capacity and financial resources which each person has or is likely to have in the future
  • The financial needs, obligations and responsibilities each person has or is likely to have in the future
  • The financial needs of the child
  • The income, earning capacity, property and financial resources of the child
  • Any physical or mental disability of the child
  • The manner in which the child was being or is expected to be educated or trained.

Which financial orders can the court grant under the Children Act 1989?

Under a schedule 1 application the court has the power to make a variety of orders which could include:

  • An order for a lump sum which benefits the child and it can be used to pay for a child’s medical and dental expenses, as well as to buy a home, together with funds to furnish the child’s home etc.
  • An order for property transfer or settlement of property to satisfy the child/children’s housing needs; typically, this entails transferring the home the child lives at until they reach the age of 18. When the property is transferred to the parent with care of the child or children, they will hold the property in trust for the purpose of making sure the children’s housing needs are satisfied, and the property will then be returned to the rightful owner when the youngest child reaches the age of 18, unless there are exceptional circumstances.
  • Periodical payments which can be used to cover a child’s educational expenses, supplement maintenance, or help pay for a child’s disability. A court will only however provide top up maintenance in a case where the paying parent exceeds the maximum income threshold for child maintenance, as prescribed under the Child Support Agency or the Child Maintenance Service.

This publication is a general summary of the law. It should not replace legal advice tailored to your specific circumstances.

This article was brought to you by Kidd Rapinet’s family solicitors. You can book an appointment with any of the family lawyers across our other offices in Aylesbury, Canary Wharf, Farnham, High Wycombe, Maidenhead or Slough, using the form provided.  Please use the links provided to find more information on divorce or separation, child arrangements and other areas of family law.

These materials and content have been prepared for the benefit of their viewers/readers. They are intended for marketing purposes only and are of a general nature and do not constitute legal advice applicable to any particular facts or circumstances. Kidd Rapinet LLP and/or the author(s) accept no duty of care, responsibility or liability for any loss or damage which you or any third party may suffer as a result of any reliance or use by you or them of these marketing materials and content, except to the extent it is not legally possible to exclude such liability. If you require legal advice on your own situation, please contact us so we can discuss how we may assist.

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