Marc Gander - The Consumer Survival Handbook

A 220 page introduction to all things consumer related by our own BankFodder.

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Patricia Pearl - Small Claims Procedure - A Practical Guide

An excellent guide for the layperson in how to use the County Court - a must if you are intending to start a claim.

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  1. #1

    Angry Income support and child maintenence


    I recently found that i was able to claim income support. I have 2 sons and recieve child maintenence for the first born through the csa. My ex husband pays me child support but not through the csa. Apparently he has to do this through the csa. Mys ex and I are now on good terms and i dont want to rock the boat. Also he pays me on the same day a regular amount each month yet the CSA manage to C*!K my payments up most months. The lady said I can send a letter in from him stating how much he pays each month but then still says this has to go through the CSA which i dont understand why can anyone advise at all??

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  2. #2

    Default Re: Income support and child maintenence

    Hi jodberry,

    Where a person with care has the option/has to apply for child support through the CSA, s/he can choose to use the Maintenance Direct service. Once the CSA has assessed the amount of maintenance owed, the parents can make their own arrangements for payment. This should be a quicker method of payment and could be an option where the separated parents are on good terms. Where Maintenance Direct is chosen, letters will be sent by the CSA to both parents telling them the amount of any arrears and the date regular payment should start. If regular payments are not made as agreed, the parent with care can request that payments in the future should be made via the CSA.

    So this means that they do still have to assess how much should be paid as you are receiving income support but at least by organising the payments between yourselves it is a little more friendly.

    Have a look at the child support agency website, maintenance direct is listed at the bottom. Hope this helps.
    Payments and Arrears - How is child maintenance paid? - Questions and Answers - Child Support Agency

  3. #3

    Smile Re: Income support and child maintenence

    The reason that everything goes through the CSA is because maintenance payments are always deducted from the Income Support that you receive. If payments are paid by your ex to them instead of to you, they can then see exactly what you are receiving and deduct from your Income Support accordingly. Doesn't stop them stuffing it up though !

    This means that it doesn't usually pay for lone parents to declare the whereabouts of an ex-partner when the money that Income Support deduct as a penalty for withholding information is less than the money received from the ex.... if you can follow that.

    The only time that lone parents gain from the System is when they are in work because then, they get to keep it all. I guess that the arrangement is all part of the incentive to have us believe that all female lone parents are a mass of feckless individuals who get pregnant on purpose ! It certainly used to be portrayed like that in the press before asylum seekers became the modern lepers for the tabloids to pick on.

    In reality, all they are trying to do is make fathers more responsible for the children they leave behind. However, life is rarely so black and white. Up to you whether you decide to tell Income Support about the whereabouts of your ex or not, but they will pressurise you to do so and deduct from your Benefit if you don't... which will leave your ex with all the control and that doesn't sound too good to me. Good luck.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Income support and child maintenence

    I worked for CSA 2 years ago but presume things are still the same.
    I do not think the CSA are saying the payment has to go through them they want the assessment to go through them to check your ex is paying the correct amount.
    This is how it will work.
    Ex will send a letter saying I pay XX maintenance.
    CSA will ask him to prove his income and living arrangements i.e mortgageicon, renting, living with family, new partner, new kids etc
    Ex sends info
    In most cases CSA will say you are not paying enough you have to pay XXX.
    AS Ex now pays you xxx instead of xx you don't actually get any income support anyway

    As you are on good terms with your partner you need to decide if the amount you will get from income support is going to be worth pursuing.
    If you are on any income related benefits i.e income support, child tax credits you cannot have a private arrangement with your Ex on how much he pays maintenance, the CSA will insist on assessing his ability to pay and decide how much.

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