Apply for child support if one party lives overseas

The Child Support Act 1991 looks after child maintenance arrangements for:

  • families living in New Zealand
  • families where 1 of the parents lives in Australia.

However, you may be able to get child support even if you or the other parent lives outside of New Zealand and Australia. To get child support, the country needs to be:

Commonwealth countries and designated countries

This group of countries includes:

If you live in New Zealand and the other parent lives in a Commonwealth or designated country

If you live in New Zealand and the other parent lives in a Commonwealth or designated country, you can apply for child support through the Ministry of Justice or the Family Court.

Find out more about applying for child support if the other parent lives in a Commonwealth or designated country

If you live in a Commonwealth or designated country and the other parent lives in New Zealand

Contact the agency in your country that’s in charge of child support if you live in a Commonwealth or designated country and the other parent lives in New Zealand. You can also contact a lawyer in your country.

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UNCRAM countries

Find out which countries are part of the 1956 United Nations Convention for the Recovery Abroad of Maintenance (UNCRAM) (external link)

If you live in New Zealand and the other parent lives in an UNCRAM country

If you live in New Zealand and the other parent lives in an UNCRAM country, you can apply to that country for child support.

Find out more about applying for child support if the other parent lives in an UNCRAM country

If you live in an UNCRAM country and the other parent lives in New Zealand

Contact the agency in your country that’s in charge of child support if you live in an UNCRAM country and the other parent lives in New Zealand. You can also contact a lawyer in your country.

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