Shared Parenting Information Group (SPIG) UK
Belgium - Law Reform
Since 1995 the custody over the children remains with both parents, unless there is a court ruling on the case saying otherwise. (This does not necessarily mean there is a bi-location arrangement, 50/50 or otherwise). Before one of the two parents, mostly the mother, had sole custody and the other parent had visitation rights. [Thanks to Johan Hofman for this information]
Shared social security
Since 1997 the social security child support money can be paid 50/50 to the father and mother of the child(ren), if there is a bi-location arrangement. [Thanks to Johan Hofman for this information]
Shared tax benefits
Since 2000, the tax benefits related to dependent children can be paid 50/50 to the father and mother of the child(ren), if there is a joint physical custody arrangement. This new provision is being put on practice for the first time, however it is not likely to be applied in real life, for two reasons:
[Thanks to Rodrigo Ruz Torres for this information]
- The tax benefits can be shared only if both parents ask the tax office to do it (even the judge cannot force tax benefit sharing), and the parent who currently receives tax benefits is not likely to agree.
- Choosing to share tax benefits implies that child support payments cannot be deducted from income anymore - if parents have different incomes, their aggregated tax benefit is likely to decrease.
In one area the situation is actually deteriorating: because of the introduction of an electronic chip based social security ID card, it will become more difficult for a parent to recover medical bills from the medical insurance organisation if the child' s legal residence is with the other parent. [Thanks to Johan Hofman for this information]
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Last updated - 2 September 2002
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