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Are the New Child-Support Guidelines "Adequate" or "Reasonable"?

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  • Vicky Barham
  • Rose Anne Devlin
  • Chantale LaCasse

Abstract

Child-support awards constitute an important source of revenue for many single-parent households. The inadequacy of these child-support awards is one of the factors cited to justify the government's recent implementation in January 1997 of a new child-support Guidelines. This paper evaluates these Guidelines by examining how they compare to six standards of adequacy and reasonableness. We are led to conclude that any child-support system based solely on the incomes of former spouses is unlikely to succeed. One way out of this dilemma is to use a broader measure of wealth when calculating child-support payments which may make it possible to reduce the economic impact of divorce on children.

Suggested Citation

  • Vicky Barham & Rose Anne Devlin & Chantale LaCasse, 2000. "Are the New Child-Support Guidelines "Adequate" or "Reasonable"?," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 26(1), pages 1-15, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpp:issued:v:26:y:2000:i:1:p:1-15
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    Cited by:

    1. Vicky Barham & Rose Anne Devlin & Jie Yang, 2006. "Public Policies and Private Decisions: The Effect of Child Support Measures on Marriage and Divorce," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 35(2), pages 441-474, June.
    2. Vicky Barham & Rose Anne Devlin, 2003. "Child-Support Policies and the Well-Being of Children: Income versus Wealth-Based Measures," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 29(3), pages 351-365, September.

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