Parents can make a child support agreement either prescribing the amount of child support to be paid or altering an administrative assessment. Agreements can be made in relation to payment of child support by periodic and lump sum payments.
Parents can make a binding child support agreement if they both have received independent legal advice before entering the agreement. The agreement must be in writing, signed by both parents, include certificates and statement as to the provision of legal advice and be provided to the Department of Human Services. An agreement must includes at least one or more of the following kinds of provisions specified in section 84 Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989;
(a) provisions under which a party is to pay child support for a child to another party in the form of periodic amounts paid to the other party;
(b) provisions under which the rate at which a party is already liable to pay child support for a child to another party in the form of periodic amounts paid to the other party is varied;
(c) provisions agreeing between parties a departure orders;
(d) non-periodic payment provisions that state the liable party is to provide child support otherwise than in the form of periodic amounts and that the annual rate of child support payable for the child by the liable party under any administrative assessment is to be reduced;
(e) lump sum payment provisions that state the liable party is to provide child support in the form of a lump sum payment including by way of transfer of property and the lump sum payment is to be credited against the amount payable under the liable party’s liability under any administrative assessment;
(f) provisions under which a party is to provide child support otherwise than in the form of periodic amounts and that are not non‑periodic payment provisions or lump sum payment provisions;
(g) provisions under which the liability of a party to pay child support is to end from a specified day.
Consideration should be given to how care changes will affect the terms of an agreement.
Consideration should also be given to how a change to the financial circumstances of one or both parents should impact upon the agreement.
Consideration should also be given to the impact the agreement may have on a parent's entitlement to Family Tax Benefit.