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History of child support in some (non-UK) European countries

This page is being evolved as part of a long-term project. I ask anyone with useful material to get in touch at: history@childsupportanalysis.co.uk .

Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden

Austria

When? What? Information
1962-01-01 Hague Convention #8 on the law applicable to maintenance obligations towards children Entry into force.
1962-01-01 Hague Convention #9 concerning the recognition and enforcement of decisions relating to maintenance obligations towards children Entry into force.
1969-07-16 United Nations Convention on the Recovery Abroad of Maintenance Ratified.
1989 It became the responsibility of never-married parents to establish paternity and decide what to do about child maintenance. Corden.
1992-08-06 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Ratified.
     

Belgium

When? What? Information
1962-01-01 Hague Convention #9 concerning the recognition and enforcement of decisions relating to maintenance obligations towards children Entry into force.
1966-07-01 United Nations Convention on the Recovery Abroad of Maintenance Accession.
1970-10-24 Hague Convention #8 on the law applicable to maintenance obligations towards children Entry into force.
1976-11-09 Hague Convention #24 on the Law Applicable to Maintenance Obligations Only signed.
1991-12-16 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Ratified.
     

Denmark

When? What? Information
1888 Advanced maintenance scheme for illegitimate children. Corden.
1908 Advanced maintenance scheme for all children. Corden.
1959-06-22 United Nations Convention on the Recovery Abroad of Maintenance Ratified.
1960 Divorce & maintenance determination dealt with by statsamter (local offices of national and civil law). Corden.
1966-01-01 Hague Convention #9 concerning the recognition and enforcement of decisions relating to maintenance obligations towards children Entry into force.
1986 New statute on advanced maintenance. Corden.
1988-01-01 Hague Convention #23 on the Recognition and Enforcement of Decisions Relating to Maintenance Obligations Entry into force.
1991-07-19 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Ratified.
     

Finland

When? What? Information
1962-09-13 United Nations Convention on the Recovery Abroad of Maintenance Accession.
1967-08-24 Hague Convention #9 concerning the recognition and enforcement of decisions relating to maintenance obligations towards children Entry into force.
1974 Child Maintenance Act. Corden.
1977 Security of Child Maintenance Act.
Security of Child Maintenance Decree.
Corden.
1983-07-01 Hague Convention #23 on the Recognition and Enforcement of Decisions Relating to Maintenance Obligations Entry into force.
1991-06-20 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Ratified.
     

France

When? What? Information
1960-06-24 United Nations Convention on the Recovery Abroad of Maintenance Ratified.
1963-07-01 Hague Convention #8 on the law applicable to maintenance obligations towards children Entry into force.
1966-07-25 Hague Convention #9 concerning the recognition and enforcement of decisions relating to maintenance obligations towards children Entry into force.
1977-10-01 Hague Convention #23 on the Recognition and Enforcement of Decisions Relating to Maintenance Obligations Entry into force.
1977-10-01 Hague Convention #24 on the Law Applicable to Maintenance Obligations Entry into force.
1990-08-07 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Ratified.
     

Germany

When? What? Information
Federal Republic before re-unification
1959-07-20 United Nations Convention on the Recovery Abroad of Maintenance Ratified.
1962-01-01 Hague Convention #8 on the law applicable to maintenance obligations towards children Entry into force.
1962-01-01 Hague Convention #9 concerning the recognition and enforcement of decisions relating to maintenance obligations towards children Entry into force.
1969 Regelunterhalt ("maintenance rules"?) - regular support - for non-marital children. Corden.
1969 Basic amounts for child maintenance were set in legislation, and have been adjusted regularly.  
1987-04-01 Hague Convention #23 on the Recognition and Enforcement of Decisions Relating to Maintenance Obligations Entry into force.
1987-04-01 Hague Convention #24 on the Law Applicable to Maintenance Obligations Entry into force.
Re-unified Germany (October 1990)
1990 Federal Republic (West Germany) law (see above) was introduced across what had been the German Democratic Republic (East Germany). Corden.
1992-03-06 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Ratified.
1993 Access to the advance maintenance scheme was widened. Corden.
     

Netherlands

When? What? Information
1962-07-31 United Nations Convention on the Recovery Abroad of Maintenance Ratified.
1962-12-14 Hague Convention #8 on the law applicable to maintenance obligations towards children Ratified.
1964-04-28 Hague Convention #9 concerning the recognition and enforcement of decisions relating to maintenance obligations towards children Ratified.
1981-03-01 Hague Convention #23 on the Recognition and Enforcement of Decisions Relating to Maintenance Obligations Entry into force.
1981-03-01 Hague Convention #24 on the Law Applicable to Maintenance Obligations Entry into force.
1993 Research by Netherlands Institute for Budget Control and the Central Bureau for Statistics, which was subsequently used to set the minimum amounts. Corden.
1995-02-06 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Acceptance.
1997 (January) Enforcement of child maintenance transfered to a new agency - LBIO (Landelijk Bureau Oderhoudsbijdragen). One of the aims was to increase compliance. Corden.
     

Norway

When? What? Information
1957-10-25 United Nations Convention on the Recovery Abroad of Maintenance Accession.
1965-11-01 Hague Convention #9 concerning the recognition and enforcement of decisions relating to maintenance obligations towards children Entry into force.
1978-07-01 Hague Convention #23 on the Recognition and Enforcement of Decisions Relating to Maintenance Obligations Entry into force.
1981 Act on Parents and Children.  
1991-01-08 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Ratified.
1992 Maintenance determination moved from fylkesmann (local offices of national and civil law) to local offices of NIA (National Insurance Administration). Corden.
     

Sweden

When? What? Information
1937 Advanced maintenance scheme for both non-married & divorced women. Corden.
1958-10-01 United Nations Convention on the Recovery Abroad of Maintenance Ratified.
1964 Law on Maintenance Advance. Corden.
1966-03-01 Hague Convention #9 concerning the recognition and enforcement of decisions relating to maintenance obligations towards children Entry into force.
1977-05-01 Hague Convention #23 on the Recognition and Enforcement of Decisions Relating to Maintenance Obligations Entry into force.
1990-06-29 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Ratified.
1996 Law on Maintenance Support. Transfered administrative responsibility for assessing liabilities of non-resident parents whose child are receiving maintenance support from public funds. Corden.
1997 Legislation to avoid inflation of expenditure on advanced maintenance as a result of low levels of voluntarily agreed maintenance. Corden.
     

Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain

Corden: Apparently few lone mothers in Greece, Italy, Portugal, or Spain receive significant amounts of child maintenance, nor are there official public authorities for collecting child maintenance.

References

Finer: The Finer Report - Report of the "Committee for One-Parent Families".
Command paper Cmnd 5629 & 5629-I
ISBN 0-10-156290-X
ISBN 0-10-156291-8

Corden: Making child maintenance regimes work
Family Policy Studies Centre & Joseph Rowntree Foundation
Anne Corden
ISBN 1-901455-35-1
Summary

Page last updated: 18 December, 2003 © Copyright Barry Pearson 2003