To involve the CSA?

(59 Posts)
pinguthepenguin Sun 07-Oct-12 20:50:43

Hi All,

Hoping to canvass opinion here on whether or not I'm heading down the right road.

Comnunication is not great between my ex and I. We have periods of getting on fine, then for a myriad of reasons, it becomes bad again...and not just a brief falling out, but spectacularly bad. We rarely have shouting matches..his preferred method is to wait til he gets home and then send lengthy from his and his wife detailing all my failings as a parent...and without fail, there will be a reference in it somewhere to how I am paid above and beyond what they have to. This comment will be made in spite of the fact that I have never once raised the issue of money with him.

It never fails to amaze me, given that the maintanence aspect is one thing we have never disagreed about and yet it is routinely thrown into an email in relation to a completely different discussion. Its patently obvious he resents the money, yet he says he takes his financial contribution to his dd 'very seriously'. Exp pays regular maintanence for DD, we have an informal arrangement, and has never missed a payment etc - it just never comes up between us verbally. He pays a set amount, and this hasnt changed in the 5 years since we split. In fact it went down last year by £100 per month after the birth of his new baby. This was suggested by me as I thought it would be the fair thing to do. To be honest, I am always trying to find ways to improve things between us and thought this might be one of the ways to do. As with most things though, he took the reduction, but reminded me it wasn't a 'favour' to him, but something he was thinking about anyway, now that our dd's childcare costs had gone down. (!)

He is notoriously tight, when we were together money was an actual obsession for him, so its clear to me that while he pays the maintanence, it is a source of discontentment between him and his wife. It makes me feel like a money grabbibg shit bag when he throws these comments into the emails or texts - and yet he will not say one word to my face about it. Its so bizzare. I don't think he is trying to scare me about withdrawing or reducing it, because I have a decent job...and in all honesty, if I relied on it, we would have starved by now!
I have never once in all the years approached him for extra money or asked him to pick up any costs for dd outside of his payment

So, my thoughts are.....I have no control over his routine put downs about my parenting, but I am now thinking that I can formalise maintanence so he can shut the fuck up about paying me 'over and above' what he has to. I may well get less by going down the CSA route, but I don't care. He does a 30 mile round trip to collect dd, and she sleeps there twice a week, plus he has a new family, so I'm well aware this will all be taken into account when assessing his contribution. He is self employed and would probably cook the hell out of his books anyway.

As an aside,my own DP wants me to refuse maintanence from him altogether, because he believes that the amount is pathetic and hates the way he batters me over the head with it every time he gets the chance. I will of course not do this as it will play into his hands, but I'm thinking that formalsing our arrangement will remove at least one more thing he can control me with.

KateByChristmas Mon 08-Oct-12 13:19:48

Hmm I've re written this post a good few times but I think you may be cutting you nose off to spite your face by refusing to take maintenance, its his responsibility and hes willing to pay (quite rightly) so it makes no sense to me really. But I do sympathise with how this makes you feel so how about looking at it this way - he says he pays over and above what he has to you say indeed you do and the extra money is enriching DDs life but nobody is making you, if it's an issue then fill out the on line CSA calculator and get the figure from that, it's very simple smile all bright and breezy just give the issue back to him to deal with.

Or send an email back saying the money keeps being mentioned and it shouldn't be a constant bone of contention but an agreed amount that's not going to cause issues.

NotaDisneyMum Mon 08-Oct-12 13:20:26

pingu she might be listed as a director, though.
It is a known CSA loophole - the profit your ex's company makes will be split between all the directors directors - so she can take a proportion of the profit if she is a director which will go into their household but won't be assessed for CSA.

pinguthepenguin Mon 08-Oct-12 13:24:37

NADM- really? Jeez, who knew people would go that far?

I see what you mean about cutting off my nose etc, it just irks me so much because it so clearly is a pathetic amount in relation to what he earns and yet he can't stop himself reminding me that it's 'more than he has to'. There is not a prayer in heaven's chance that it is half of what it takes to give our child the life she has now, so I just wish he would shut the hell up about itangry

IneedAsockamnesty Mon 08-Oct-12 13:41:28

yes pingu it is true and is used loads by people to reduce liability.

fwiw the csa would only ask for 15% of his income after deductions are made to allow for him having another child living with him and his contact being over 52 days a year he could also apply for a variation to allow for travel.

other ways he could reduce liability are by claiming his partner pays him and less than he does or offsetting personal assests to claim them as company expenses some nrp's will do anything they can think of to reduce maintainance

Tabliope Mon 08-Oct-12 13:43:24

pingu, don't make any rash decisions. Check Companies House online - you don't need to write to them - you pay £1 I think for any document on the company you're interested in which should include something that shows who the directors are. It's very little money and could be quite enlightening. Don't give the maintenance money up. Don't rise to his bait though like niceguy2 said. I'd curb him seeing your DD on days that aren't his - it should be something that works but it only seems to work in his favour so I'd tell him not to arrange things on those days - take an element of control back. The point is - you're dancing to his tune over everything so I'd limit that and keep everything else business like. I'd be very curious to know what's on the Companies House website about his company. Don't make waves for the sake of it though.

SusanneLinder Mon 08-Oct-12 13:44:20

I used the CSA and have only FINALLY got my arrears from my ex.They were 5 and 8 when we split up, they are now 20 and 23.And that was only after about 5 complaints and 2 through my MP.

Tbh if you are getting maintenance, I would let sleeping dogs lie.

Tabliope Mon 08-Oct-12 14:07:36

pingu, there is a CSA calculator if you want to work out how much you think you should be getting. Just google CSA calculator.

pinguthepenguin Mon 08-Oct-12 14:54:22

Thanks everyone. I think the consensus here is to leave well alone, so that is prob what I will do....however it can't hurt to be prepared so I'll also be doing a bit of research on the company.

Will also take all your advice about how to deal with the shitty correspondence and to stop actually believing all the lies they write

Thanks again wink

flow4 Mon 08-Oct-12 22:43:47

SusanneLinder, that's good to hear... My DS will turn 18 in six months without me ever having received a penny of maintenance, and I did wonder whether the arrears would continue to be due to me after he reached adulthood.

Could I please PM you re tactics sometime? (Not urgently - I certainly won't so it tonight, and of course there would be no hurry for you to respond smile )

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