A parent who receives a low taxable income from a family business may have access to additional financial resources, or alternatively, he or she may have an additional earning capacity.
In determining the parent's financial resources, CSA may consider the following factors:
CSA may determine that a parent's income is greater or lower than the amount upon which they have been assessed. Alternatively, CSA may decide that the parent's financial resources give the parent a greater capacity to contribute to the financial support of the child than is indicated by the assessment.
From 1 July 2006, CSA can only determine that a parent's earning capacity is greater than is reflected in his or her income used in the child support formula if it is satisfied with all of the following three matters:
CSA must be satisfied that all three compulsory criteria are satisfied before it can change an assessment to take into account a parent's earning capacity, rather than his or her actual income.
If the parent's circumstances satisfy only one or two of the criteria, CSA cannot make a decision based on the parent's earning capacity.
CSA must also be satisfied it would be possible for the parent to increase his or her income by changing his or her work arrangements. That is, work must be available for the parent in his or her area and the parent must have the necessary qualifications and experience to perform that work.