Dads who complain they are being ripped off by their ex-wives for child support are paying former public servants to prepare and lodge their appeals to pay less.
Single mothers have attacked the practice as “stealing from children’’ despite it being legal to hire help.
While official figures confirm that one in three fathers pay just $7 a week to support their kids, business is booming for companies offering “dispute resolution’’ with the Child Support Agency.
One new entrant has described the government agency that determines child support as a “dictatorship’’ and battles the bureaucrats on behalf of clients.
It boasts employing former CSA staff who know how the system works. “Life is about taking action, so draw a line in the sand and have a battle with CSA’s dictatorship,’’ the Facebook website states.
While the Abbott government has confirmed it has refused to deal with some agents who are not acting in the best interests of the clients or are attempting to subvert the system, no complaints have been raised to date about My Child Support.
Human Services Minister Marise Payne said: “Separation is a challenging time for families. My department works hard to advise parents about the payment and support options available at no cost.
But angry fathers are claiming that the CSA agency is biased against men.
Barry Williams of the Lone Fathers Association has also recently claimed that many mothers are faking domestic violence in order to secure full custody of their children, simply to get the maximum child support.
The founder of the new service said: “I used to work for the CSA for seven years. A lot of people end up getting financially screwed.
“Most of the staff at the CSA are kids.”
Meanwhile, a Labor MP is pushing for the Federal Government to examine whether separated parents should be forced to provide proof of how they spend their child support payments.
Labor’s Member for Greenway in Western Sydney, Michelle Rowland, has asked a parliamentary inquiry examining the child support system, to consider whether parents should be accountable for how they spend child support money.
“Many parents feel as though their child support is going toward items which provide no direct benefit to their children rather towards expenses which help maintain their former partner’s lifestyle,” Ms Rowland said.