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Title: Making the father pay : the Child Support Act, 1991, from an historical perspective
Author: Anderson, Carrie
ISNI:       0000 0001 3420 4990
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 1998
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In recent years renewed efforts have been made to enforce the edict of family responsibility, culminating in the enactment of the Child Support Act, 1991. Under this legislation, the duty of absent fathers to provide for their former families has been reinforced which great rigour. The primary aim of this study is to see if the outcomes of this Act could have been predicted through an historical analysis of past precedent. The period from 1900-1940 is investigated for comparison with the present day. Statutory measures which attempted to ensure that fathers complied with court orders were also enacted in these years. Moreover, they were passed in a political, economic and moral climate not dissimilar to the 1980s and 1990s. Through an examination of archival sources, this study looks at the reasons why governments then were anxious to find ways of preventing lone mother families from becoming a burden on central or local finances - and why they believed their support should not be the responsibility of the community. It then explores the outcome of these measures in terms of their success, or otherwise, from an administrative and financial perspective. Following a similar examination of the Child Support Act, a comparative analysis of efforts to reinforce the financial duty of absent fathers in both the early and late twentieth century is undertaken. From these findings it is concluded that important lessons from the past have been ignored at our peril.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Lone mothers ; Absent fathers ; Single parents ; WWI