Family Law Hub

KH v CMEC [2012] UKUT 329

  • In brief:  A non-resident parent's ("NRP") successful appeal against a First Tier Tribunal decision that he had received notice of an earlier appeal hearing in relation to certain child maintenance assessments that he was contesting. 

    The NRP was financially responsible for one child.  Maintenance assessments had been made against him which had almost doubled the amount of child support he was liable to pay. He appealed the assessment and a hearing date was set at the First Tier Tribunal. The parent with care ("PWC") and a Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission representative attended the hearing but the NRP didn't. The maintenance assessment was upheld. The NRP contacted HMCTS a few days later complaining that he had not received notification of the hearing date and that, in any event, he was attending a funeral that day. His letter was treated as an application to set aside a decision; the judge dealing with the matter held that the NRP had received notice of the hearing, that he had not been present at the original hearing and that he had not met the criteria necessary to set aside the decision. The NRP appealed to the Upper Tribunal who concluded that he had been unfairly deprived of an opportunity to make his case to the First Tier Tribunal; they accepted the NRP's evidence that the letter notifying him of the hearing had been delayed by poor weather and had not been received until after the original hearing had taken place. 

    The First Tier Tribunal's decision was also set aside as the tribunal had erred in law and the matter was remitted before a new tribunal.

Case note, published: 04/12/2012

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Published: 04/12/2012

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