Among all the beat-up by the National Party about beneficiaries, I’m wondering why we don’t hear anything from political parties about deadbeat dads. You know, the parents (almost inevitably male, in my experience) who are estranged from their children and the caregiving parent, and do everything possible to avoid paying child support.
I’ve heard numerous complaints from women over the years about this. I’ve even heard men, usually after a few beers, bragging about how they get away with paying minimal child support.
Now, there’s probably not much that can be done about the ones who just take off overseas. But there are those who remain in New Zealand, using devices such as self-employment, employment on a very low wage by a company they own, and Loss Attributing Qualifying Companies, to minimise their taxable income, and consequently minimise their child support payments.
The term “bludger” to me far more accurately describes child support avoiders than it does the women who are forced onto a benefit in order to care for their children.
Isn’t it time that we reviewed the Child Support Act to allow Inland Revenue to go behind the declared taxable income and assess the real ability of deadbeat dads to provide for their children?
And why isn’t the National Party targeting the deadbeat dads, rather than the solo mums? Could it be because a high proportion of them vote National?