“In case of unpaid, CAF will be able to see more quickly that there is an unpaid, but that stops there”, regrets Stéphanie Lamy who affirms that the Family allowance funds will not have the means to constrain a parent to pay what he owes.
Emmanuel Macron presented on Tuesday January 5 in Tours a reform of alimony. It should make it possible to ensure the payment by the State of unpaid pensions, a situation which affects 350,000 separated parents, a majority (85%) of whom are mothers. “In case of unpaid, CAF will be able to see more quickly that there is an unpaid, but it stops there”, regrets on franceinfo Stéphanie Lamy, co-founder of the collective “Abandon de famille-Tolérance zero!”. “There is no new recovery measure”, she laments.
franceinfo: Will this reform address the problem of unpaid pensions?
Stephanie Lamy: It is a beautiful promise. That said, it is not a reform: it is a measure, certainly important, but it is not a reform of the system, which has existed since 1984 and was modified in 2016, 2017 and 2018. We still have a new measure that comes upstream of a first unpaid: the parents will be able, as soon as there is a fixing of food contribution, to go to the CAF, ask that the debtor pay the food contributions to the CAF, and that CAF pay them to the creditor.
Moreover, if there are unpaid bills, there is no new measure that allows us to look for these sub-funds, these pensions that the president promises to be paid. There is no new recovery measure.
What is new?
There is a change in principle: the State intervenes upstream of a first unpaid debt, to regulate the flow of private fund transfers such as food contributions. It did not yet exist in France. Once the pension is fixed, they will go to the CAF so that, instead of transferring the funds from bank to bank in private, it happens through the CAF. In case of unpaid, CAF will be able to see more quickly that there is an unpaid, but it stops there. She has no more means to cover.
Are you asking for constraints?
We ask that the entire system be backed by the Public Treasury, which would allow much more muscular recovery procedures. This would also make it possible, in the event of an offense, that is to say in the event of a categorical, intentional refusal to pay the food contributions, which is domestic violence, economic violence, to be able to stay in court more easily. When we have real cases of economic violence today, when the victims file a complaint with the court, the complaints are systematically classified with the mention “prosecution other than criminal”. And we invite the victims to turn to CAF, where they already have their file that has been rotting for years.
Since what the debtors tell the victims is that they do not pay since there is the CAF. Food contributions are on average 170 euros. If this is not paid and if the victim lives alone, CAF can pay an allowance, in the amount of 116 euros. We have a big problem between reality and Mr. Macron’s promises. This is a first step, very good, we will be able to act upstream, but now we will have to make a real reform.