by Byron Connolly

New app to streamline child support payments

Apr 29, 20152 mins
Technology Industry

A new smartphone app promises to make it easier for parents to manage their child support payments.

The Department of Human Services’ latest Express Plus Child Support app enables parents to make and keep track of child payments, update their details and tell the department about changes in their circumstances.

In 2014, the department supported around 1.4 million separated parents to transfer around $3.5 billion for more than 1.2 million children.

Once registered for myGov, parents can download the app to view their letters, update their contact and bank account details, pay child support, and check payments collected and paid by the department.

“Parents can also inform the department of changes to their care arrangements and update income estimates they have made for their current assessment,” Minister for Human Services, Senator Marise Payne said in a statement.

Payne said separation is a challenging time for many people and having access to quality resources and support services early can make a difference in how separated families interact over the long term.

The free app joins other innovations released in recent times by the department including apps to access Centrelink and Medicare services. It’s currently available for Apple devices with iOS7+ and will be available for Android soon, the department said.

In mid-2013, Department of Human Services’ CIO, Gary Sterrenberg, said the agency had begun to see the benefits of moving to a self-managed services model.

At the time, Sterrenberg said the DHS’ apps were 69 per cent more effective in allowing citizens to get the outcome they needed. This was because they had been designed with the citizen in mind rather than a “bunch of technologists.”

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