New Zealand is one of the countries on the right track with potential father-friendly child support reforms that would eliminate the current model of using the non-custodial parent, traditionally the father, as a “cash parent.”
The country’s online publication Stuff reported proposals include considering both parents’ income and the parenting time provided when calculating child support. The current system only considers the income of the non-custodial parent, which as our readers know is usually the father a.k.a. the ATM, and has been called “unfair and unjust.”
Child support debt in the country under the current system has reached nearly $2 billion.
Among other proposals is putting a cap on penalties for failing to make child support payments. More than one-quarter of the $2 billion child support debt is due to unpaid support while the rest is penalties on the arrears.
The publication quoted the country’s Revenue Minister Peter Dunne as saying, “Families have evolved, and their domestic and financial situations have changed and are often more complex today. … Both parents are far more likely to be working than was the case in 1992 (when the current system was instituted), and often separated fathers have greater involvement with their children.”
What are your thoughts on this? New Zealand’s leaders seem to comprehend the need for child support reform; why don’t ours?