How much is child maintenance in Ireland?

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How much is child maintenance in Ireland?

Clients often ask “How much is child maintenance in Ireland”?. There is no set answer to the question, because each case will have its own set of unique facts. In this blog post, I will try to shed light on some of the key points that need to be considered when deciding “how much is child maintenance in Ireland.”

The law in regards to child maintenance in Ireland

Under Irish law both parents have a duty to financially maintain their dependent children up to the age of 18, or up to the age of 23 if the child is in full time education.  In many cases, informal arrangements are made between parents but if this is not possible mediation is one route to try and reach an agreement.

If an arrangement can’t be reached informally or via mediation, then an application can be made to the court who will examine the family finances and make an order in respect of maintenance.

So what will courts take into consideration when making a ruling?

The court will consider all aspects of the case, including the income of both parties and maintenance responsibilities they may have towards other dependents.  Some of the expenses that a court will factor into any judgment include food, education, accommodation, medical, transport, clothing and any other expenses that may be deemed to be related to the child.

One of the ways you can figure out how much child maintenance should be paid is by sitting down and writing down the expenses that are incurred every week in respect of your child or children including any schooling or medical expenses.

So how much is child maintenance in Ireland?

The District Court can award up to €150 per child per week. The District Court may also make a lump sum award of up to a maximum of €15,000.

If you are seeking maintenance sums greater than these you will have to make an application to the Circuit Court.

It is important to be aware that just because one parent is ordered by the court to pay maintenance this does not give a parent any access rights or guardianship rights. Maintenance and access are two distinct matters.

Court ordered maintenance is usually paid through the District Court office for the first 12 months to make sure it is being paid as ordered. If payments are missed, a breach of maintenance summons may be issued by the court which can lead to imprisonment if the arrears are significantly high.

The importance of receiving the best legal advice

If you have any questions in relation to “how much is child maintenance in Ireland” you should contact us and let a family law solicitor guide you towards a solution.

Once a court makes a judgment in respect of child maintenance it can be extremely difficult to vary it and this is why you should always seek professional legal advice.

If you have any questions in relation to this article please to contact us via phone at  (061) 467 392 or email via  alternatively you can contact us through the  contact form on our website.

This article is for educational purposes only and is not intended to provide specific legal advice.