The National Women’s Council of Ireland (NWCI) has said that a State maintenance agency should be established – and that it should be able to help mothers to sue absent fathers for maintenance payments.
The council called for the establishment of the agency in its pre-budget submission to Government.
NWCI director Orla O’Connor said that it would “reduce the burden on mothers who parent alone to litigate for child maintenance”.
Costly court cases
“As things stand, women are forced to secure child maintenance through the courts in an approach that is costly, complex and time consuming.
“This agency [would] be invaluable to women who require its services. And it [would] also save the State money long term by reducing the need for legal aid, as well as removing this process from the already overburdened courts system,” she said.