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Louisa Gothard
Louisa Gothard
Senior Solicitor, Head of Family Law
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CHILD SUPPORT: Secretary of State for Work and Pensions v Menary-Smith [2006] EWCA Civ 1689
Date:16 JAN 2007

(Court of Appeal; May, Carnwath and Gage LJJ; 14 December 2006)

Regulation 9 of the Child Support (Arrears, Interest and Adjustment of Maintenance Assessments) Regulations 1992 (SI 1992/1816) gave the Secretary of State power to attribute lump sum payments of child support to arrears if he thought fit. In the absence of any legal reason why the decision to attribute payments either to arrears or to current obligations should not be effective for income support as well as for child support maintenance, and of any evidence that the decision was not validly made, the presumption must be that the decision not to attribute lump sum payments of child support to arrears in relation to income support assessment was a valid one.