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More children receiving child maintenance

Date:3 AUG 2009

Almost 794,000 children are benefiting as the Child Support Agency (CSA) collected or arranged £1,136 million in child maintenance across Great Britain over the past twelve months, according to the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission (CMEC).

National Statistics released this week show between July 2008 and June 2009, the CSA also continued to recover unpaid maintenance for children, with £157m in arrears collected in Great Britain in the last year.

The latest figures show that in the quarter ending June 2009, 793,900 children were benefiting from maintenance via the statutory maintenance service. This represents an increase of 14,100 children compared to just three months previously in March 2009.

In the year ending June 2009, the CSA also collected or arranged £1,136 million in child maintenance, an increase of £4.4m from the 12 months to March 2009.

Child Maintenance Commissioner, Stephen Geraghty, said: "These steady improvements in child maintenance are making a real difference to families across Great Britain. In just three months to June 2009, an extra 11,100 families benefited from maintenance.

"The changes we are making continue to create a solid foundation for the Commission's work as we move towards a new child maintenance system, giving parents more choice than ever to suit their own circumstances."

Since October 2008, the CSA has gradually become the responsibility of the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission, which is developing an entirely new maintenance scheme to replace the two CSA schemes from 2011.