The Child Support Assessment in Australia is covered by The Family Law Act 1975 and the Child Support Acts 1989, which includes Child Support (Registration and Collection) Act 1988 and Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989.
Under this law, a parent or carer may apply for the coverage of the need of the child for financial support and care before the Registrar. In case the said Application is not possible due to the inability of the Parent to sustain and pay their child support, the Family Law Act 1975 allows the Court to issue a child maintenance order.
The child maintenance order of the court can only be issued if the Registrar could not make a child support assessment for the child. Reasons vary according to each case but the predominant issues are the inability of the parents to pay for child support and if the child reaches the age of 18.
Persons who can apply to the Court for the issuance of a child maintenance order are:
Additionally, the following individuals can apply for the Child Maintenance Order if the Child is under the care and guardianship of another person as provided by the Child Welfare Law:
When the Court issues the child maintenance order, it can compel one parent or both of them, depending on the case, to pay for the child maintenance under Section 66L of the Family Law Act 1975. Additionally, the Step-Parent may also be compelled to pay for the child maintenance under Section 25 and 117(10) of the Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989 in relation to Sections 66D , 66M and 66N of the Family Law Act 1975.