Maintenance Support and Maintenance Allowance

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Child maintenance support is a money payment with which a parent participates in the costs of child maintenance. Parents can agree on the maintenance support between the two of them or together with a child welfare officer. A mutual agreement between parents is not enforceable i.e. distrainable. Also, it does not entitle to child maintenance allowance from Kela (The Social Insurance Institution of Finland), and the parent with the maintenance obligation cannot deduct it in his/her taxation.

A child welfare officer can verify the agreement if the parents agree with its contents. Additionally, the agreement must be in accordance with the child’s interests and reasonable considering the financial situation of the parent who pays the support. Instructions compiled by the Ministry of Justice can be used as guidelines when evaluating the amount of maintenance support. An agreement verified by a child welfare officer is enforceable i.e. distrainable.

In case the parents do not agree on the amount of child maintenance support, the matter can be taken to court to be settled.

Primarily, the child maintenance support is paid once per month. Child maintenance support must be paid on due date and it is primarily paid to the account of the parent who lives with the child.

Child maintenance allowance

Child maintenance allowance is paid by Kela (The Social Insurance Institution of Finland). This support requires a child maintenance agreement verified by a child welfare officer, or a court’s decision about child maintenance support. Child maintenance allowance can also be paid based on the fact that the paternity of the child remains unresolved.