Child Support in Iceland

Meðlag á Íslandi
Information about child support and rules that apply to child support payers who live in another country is available here.

Child support 

Child support is paid by the parent or parents with whom the child does not have legal domicile. The allowance is intended to cover the child’s living costs; it belongs to the child and should be used for its benefit. The parent with whom the child is domiciled receives child support payments and makes use of them. Parents are required to support their children and pay child support for them until the age of 18.

Parents agree on child support when they terminate their cohabitation. Child support agreements are not valid unless attested to by the District Commissioner. Any dispute arising regarding child support payments shall be referred to the District Commissioner for a ruling or to the courts.

The Social Insurance Administration pays the minimum statutory child support at the request of a parent who lives in Iceland after a child support decision is available.

The amount of the minimum child support is determined by the Icelandic parliament Althingi in legislation each year. You can see the minimum child support amount here. A parent may request a higher payment if the other parent has the financial capacity to pay more. A parent may also request a higher child support payment at certain times in the child's life where expenses increase, such as at confirmation or when starting school.

A parent is resident in Iceland and the other parent, who is to pay child support, is resident in another Nordic state

The residence of the child support payer is irrelevant with regard to the obligation to make payment to the Municipal Child Support Collection Centre. According to the Nordic agreement on mutual collection of child support payments, the Collection Centre may request that a child support debt be collected in other Nordic countries. This includes, among other things, a listing on the bad credit register in the home country, as well as normal collection operations.

A parent is resident in another Nordic state and the parent who is to pay child support is resident in Iceland

If a parent receiving child support moves from Iceland, payments from the Social Insurance Administration will be cancelled and the person concerned must then check his/her right in the state of residence. In such a case, the obligation of the payer of child support remains unchanged. 

The recipient of child support applies for child support upon arrival in another Nordic country and the collection agency of that country sends a claim for child support to the country where the payer lives.


A payer of child support has difficulty making the support payment

If a child support payer considers him-/herself unable to meet the child support payments, the payer must contact the Municipal Child Support Collection Centre and negotiate an agreement on the default to prevent legal collection from being initiated, as that will involve costs and inconvenience for the child support payer.

How long does child support have to be paid?

As a general rule a parent's maintenance obligation towards a child ends when the child reaches the age of 18. Under Art. 62 of the Children's Act, however, support can be awarded for the education or vocational training of a youth until he or she reaches the age of 20. The young person him-/herself must submit a request for such support and is authorized to make use of the funds.

An application for child support payments and education support is submitted electronically on My Pages at the Social Insurance Administration.

Who should I contact if I have questions?

More information can be found on the Social Insurance Administration's website and the website of the District Commissioner. 

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