Child Support is financial support to help with the cost of caring for children paid by a parent or parents. Unfortunately, withholding or minimising child support is a tactic often used by perpetrators of domestic abuse to continue, or even commence, their abuse, post-separation.

Also known as child maintenance, child support is a common way for separated parents to manage the costs of dependent children, usually by way of payment to the primary carer and/or lower income parent. It may also be payable to legal non-parent carers in some circumstances.

Child support payments interact with Family Tax Benefit A and the Government will expect you to apply for Child Support to ensure eligibility for this payment. If it's difficult for you to apply for a child support assessment (for instance, because of domestic abuse or you are worried about what your partner will do), you may be eligible for an exemption.

Child support can be by paid by private arrangement or using Services Australia's Child Support Collect scheme. Be aware that if you use a private arrangement, Services Australia will assume you have been paid the full amount of child support you are owed, even if you haven't. This could affect what other payments you can access.

The Government has more information about the Child Support system on its Services Australia website.

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