to think CM Options have been bloody useless here?

(217 Posts)
VelvetSpoon Fri 12-Feb-16 16:00:06

I'm a single parent to 2 DC. I split with my Ex over 7.5 years ago. I never claimed anything - mainly because he's a complete arse who,concealed his income (all through a ltd co, he earned 5k a year,rest was dividends) and also because he said he'd rather be unemployed than pay me (he said this at mediation too, that I didn't deserve a penny!). I was / am lucky in that I don't need the money to live on.

Anyway, recently I was talking to my boyfriend about my house (Ex is still on mortgage - I've tried to buy him out but he won't respond to a text and I've not spoken to him for 5 years) and ge said why don't you just apply for maintenance, might piss him off enough to do something about the house? And if not you've got some money you can put aside for DC.

So I contacted them. Initial call where they explained how it worked, 30 mins. Second call where they set up the application 55 mins. Third call for clarification 15 mins.

Now I am not a chatter on the phone by any means. I am pretty clear and concise. So I wasn't prolonging the calls, that's how long they were because of the info requested, and the person updating their system etc.

So in all those 3 calls I explained my eldest child isn't my Exs. The position, as I informed them v clearly, is that DS1 has no contact with his bio dad. He's not on the birth cert, this is blank as to father's details. I have had no contact with him since before I knew I was pregnant, and no money from him. I met my Ex when DS was 18m, he has treated him as his since then, DS called him dad etc. He has never formally adopted him as we didn't think it necessary. I've always been v clear he should treat both DS and our DC together the same.

So I don't think that's complicated right?

On calls 2 and 3, I was asked if my Ex was on the birth cert. Well no, because I've said no father was named, and I've just told you we met when DS was 18m! Has he adopted him? No, I've already told you.

So today call no4. They can't claim for DS1 because he's not on the BC.

Would i like to make a claim against his dad? Or would I like to make a family arrangement with my Ex (despite me telling them on every call we don't speak, and he doesn't reply to other correspondence).

Is it too much to expect in 1.5 hours of calls I might get the right info, or for people to actually read the notes?

Apparently they're not proceeding with my application now, complete waste of time! angry

gooseberryroolz Fri 12-Feb-16 16:02:42

Were you trying to insist on claiming from Ex#2 for all of the dc?

NotMeNotYouNotAnyone Fri 12-Feb-16 16:08:52

It sounds like you're trying to claim for DS1? Morally you may be right but can't imagine it ever being legally right. If you are then I can see why it might be complicating things.

CalleighDoodle Fri 12-Feb-16 16:09:08

I dont get it i dont think. You want your ex who has behaved like a dick to pay for a child who isnt is when he wont even pay for a child who is? I really dont think thats likely.

gooseberryroolz Fri 12-Feb-16 16:12:02

Step-parents can pay CM voluntarily, of course.

What I really don't understand is why your application for younger DC isn't being progressed. Did you refuse to apply if Ex#2 wasn't held liable for DC #1?

MaybeIAmJustNotReasonable Fri 12-Feb-16 16:12:12

You can't claim for DS1- you weren't together then. You can claim for DS2. What's wrong with that?

AliceInUnderpants Fri 12-Feb-16 16:23:21

If this application was for both children, then of course you can't proceed, as one isn't legally liable. If you want to continue an application for your second DS, you'll have reapply.

VelvetSpoon Fri 12-Feb-16 16:24:16

Morally I think he should pay having acted as father to DS for the past 15 years. And if not, and it is so crystal clear then why not say so in the first call rather than waste my time taking ne through the details 3 times?!!

Also surely at least they should have the courtesy to actually read my file notes (which can't be very long!) and therefore not ask stupid questions.

and finally, be able to explain why my application now can't proceed for Either child!

AliceInUnderpants Fri 12-Feb-16 16:25:18

Step-parents can pay CM voluntarily, of course.

But he wasn't the kid's step-parent. He was mum's boyfriend.

AliceInUnderpants Fri 12-Feb-16 16:26:37

Morally I think he should pay having acted as father to DS for the past 15 years.

Morally, maybe you should have asked him to contribute 7.5 years ago, instead of attempting it now because some randomer has said to.

CalleighDoodle Fri 12-Feb-16 16:27:13

You seem to think theres some sort of thought process in how they work. Youd be wrong.

But anyway, now you know youll be able to get the process going for your ds2.

Why have you kept the house for so long? Surely he will be able to claim
Half when you sell, so well and truly screwing you over.

VelvetSpoon Fri 12-Feb-16 16:27:35

When we attended mediation many moons ago the mediator - an experienced family lawyer - told my Ex he was obliged to pay for both children (after I'd explained he was only bio father to the younger). His disagreement was the same for both, I didn't deserve it, not that he wouldn't pay for DS1 as he wasn't his.

VelvetSpoon Fri 12-Feb-16 16:30:34

He won't be able to claim half the house as he has no proof of any contribution to it. I've had no alternative but to keep him on the mortgage as he refused to enter into any discussion and mediation was unsuccessful.

I actually don't give a fuck about his money,I object to wasting 1.5 hours of my valuable time,and now if I want to pursue it for DS2, having to go through the whole rigmarole again.

VelvetSpoon Fri 12-Feb-16 16:32:55

He was a de facto step parent, we were together for 8 years, lived together for 8 years. Were engaged but didn't marry (my choice). DC has always addressed him as Dad, and he has always been a next of kin etc. But yes feel free to belittle all that and call him my boyfriend!

gooseberryroolz Fri 12-Feb-16 16:35:39

But he wasn't the kid's step-parent. He was mum's boyfriend.

It is very snarky to insist on that distinction for a (to all intents and purposes) father who is any case the father of a half-sibling.

Ludways Fri 12-Feb-16 16:37:15

I'd be very very careful about the house. My BIL was married before, his wife continued to live in the family home, he paid nothing to her or the child as she refused the money. He had his own business but went bust, the court saw he had his name on the house deeds so it was classed as his and they had to sell, with half the profits going to his debtors, even though he'd paid nothing in over 14 years. His exw lost her home. BIL was devastated but could do nothing about it either.

AliceInUnderpants Fri 12-Feb-16 16:44:06

It is very snarky to insist on that distinction for a (to all intents and purposes) father who is any case the father of a half-sibling.

It's not snarky at all. He wasn't a stepfather. A stepfather is someone who is married to a child's mother but isn't their father. No matter how many people use it to refer to the partner as a step-parent, it doesn't make it true. He is not the child's father, or step father, so has no legal responsibility to contribute financially. CMS deals with the legal financial contribution that a parent is obliged to pay.

Nottodaythankyouorever Fri 12-Feb-16 16:44:39

Unfortunately it doesn't matter what you think should or shouldn't happen

Your ex isn't the biological father of DC1 nor were you married.

He is under no obligation to pay.

Shutthatdoor Fri 12-Feb-16 16:46:21

He won't be able to claim half the house as he has no proof of any contribution to it.

Depends what is on the deeds.

Osolea Fri 12-Feb-16 16:47:11

The CMS/CSA is and always has been a shower of shit, so YANBU. But I don't think you can expect to make a claim against your ex for a child that isn't his.

You should still put in a new claim for your younger ds. It is a pain that you will have to go through the whole process from scratch, but tbh the problem was that you made an invalid claim to start with, for once it isn't just that the CMS isn't fit for purpose.

gooseberryroolz Fri 12-Feb-16 16:47:21

It's not snarky at all. He wasn't a stepfather. A stepfather is someone who is married to a child's mother but isn't their father. No matter how many people use it to refer to the partner as a step-parent, it doesn't make it true.

Yes, that is snarky and snide.

He is not the child's father, or step father, so has no legal responsibility to contribute financially. CMS deals with the legal financial contribution that a parent is obliged to pay.

Yes, we'd already all agreed he had no obligation to pay, legally.

It remains true that he is at liberty to pay voluntarily. He won't, of course, because he's an arse.

hefzi Fri 12-Feb-16 16:49:40

Not that it particularly helps now, but legally, he's not next of kin to DS1, and never could have been, unless you set up a specific legal agreement to this effect.

KitKat1985 Fri 12-Feb-16 16:50:55

I don't think legally your ex is under any obligation to pay for DS1 I'm afraid. He should however pay towards DS2. And yes, you are right that CM should have told you this earlier and not after several phone calls.

AyeAmarok Fri 12-Feb-16 16:57:14

I think if you are relying on him being moral re your DS1, given that he concealed his income and told you that you didn't deserve maintenance, I think you're being a bit naive.

Having said that, yes the CMS are pure shite and utterly ineffective.

CantWaitForWarmWeather Fri 12-Feb-16 16:58:02

The rules are that unless your ex has parental responsibility through adoption then you can't claim maintenance from him, and his biological father has to. Legally it is the biological father who is obliged to provide for the child that he created, and because that obligation has not been passed on to your ex legally, there really is nothing you can do.

You're just going to have to claim for your shared children and move on.

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