While we're on the subject of child maintenance. How many would admit to living with a DP who doesn't pay it?

(171 Posts)
WorraLiberty Mon 23-Jun-14 22:51:21

I'm just curious that's all.

It's quite common to read that a lot of MNetters don't receive any maintenance for their kids.

Yet it's also quite common to read that MNetters DPs do pay maintenance for their kids.

So AIBU to wonder why there is such a discrepancy? Or is there something I've (quite possibly!) overlooked?

Is there a chance that some men are claiming they do pay their exes when they actually don't...and that their new DPs are non the wiser?

fedupbutfine Mon 23-Jun-14 22:56:22

I think my ex is such a man, worra. I don't know, but I can guess. He wouldn't want people to think of him as the kind of person who doesn't support his children. He goes to great lengths to re-write history and a move post-divorce (by about 300 miles) means that there is no one around to challenge what he says because he has a totally new life. He would also make up some crap about not wanting a joint bank account ('loss of personal identity') so a new partner would be non the wiser. Yes, I support my children. Why would you question it?

My DP does pay and much more than CSA amount <and I do see it because I sort and file all bank statements etc>

His ex however withdraws contact and uses the children as pawns <whole other thread>

WorraLiberty Mon 23-Jun-14 23:00:05

fedupbutfine I think we may have married and divorced the same man shock

That's exactly what my ex is like. I'm quite sure that no-one in his close circle of friends thinks he wouldn't support his kids, yet he absolutely doesn't.

fedupbutfine Mon 23-Jun-14 23:02:37

lol worra, they're all the same man. It takes a certain type. It's not an 'all sorts' kind of world when it comes to non -payment of maintenance!

seasidesally Mon 23-Jun-14 23:04:07

this will be a short thread me thinks

its a bit like asking on here how many parents admit their child is a nightmare on their scooter on the school run,running into peoples ankles etc grin

WorraLiberty Mon 23-Jun-14 23:10:26

Yeah, fair point actually sally!! grin

I thought perhaps with name changing and stuff...but you're right, why would anyone throw themselves under the bus like that? grin

ICanSeeTheSun Mon 23-Jun-14 23:10:30

DH doesn't.

We don't know where she lives, tried contacting the CSA and they didn't want to know. Tried getting her birth certificate to open a saving account but can't because he isn't on the birth certificate.

WorraLiberty Mon 23-Jun-14 23:14:00

ICanSeeTheSun, my BIL had a similar problem for a while.

His ex said she was taking their DD on a caravan holiday to Wales and disappeared off the face of the earth for almost a year.

They're back in contact now but she caused a lot of hurt by doing that, especially to my PILs.

ICanSeeTheSun Mon 23-Jun-14 23:16:05

We haven't seen her for 7 years now.

gingercat2 Mon 23-Jun-14 23:18:51

There was a time when I didn't because ex was ruining a cash based business, declaring an income less than half the self support amount (whilst going on holidays and upgrading the car), claiming benefits, and doing much less than the 50/50 care arrangement. Meanwhile I was working two jobs and paying all child care fees. She didn't chase it up, she knew she was on a good wicket!! I've wised up now and things are a lot fairer smile

gingercat2 Mon 23-Jun-14 23:20:08

* running not ruining

passmethewineplease Mon 23-Jun-14 23:22:06

I doubt many would.

When my ex was ignoring our daughter and refusing to contribute to her upbringing I often did wonder why his dp stayed.

I just couldn't be with a man like that.who could hold such little regard for his own baby.

WorraLiberty Mon 23-Jun-14 23:27:48

No I couldn't live with someone like that either to be honest, let alone have kids with them.

passmethewineplease Mon 23-Jun-14 23:29:18

Me neither I'd be too worried they'd do the same to me tbh.

I mean it's hardly an attractive trait is it? confused

WooWooOwl Mon 23-Jun-14 23:33:56

I think there's probably a lot of women out there that kid themselves and listen to bullshit from men about how much they miss their children and are devastated to be apart from them despite the fact that they never see them make any effort with contact whatsoever.

These will be the same women that have children from a previous relationship, possibly with their own non paying ex, who are thinking that they have to put their own children first and if they are benefiting from the new arrangement then it's only what they deserve.

Or they have children to someone who they know doesn't support their existing children because they stupidly convince themselves that this relationship is special, they can change him if they only love him enough, and their mans ex must have been a psycho.

Some women are their own worst enemy.

HavanaSlife Mon 23-Jun-14 23:34:13

They think the nob head they are living with would never do the same to them, obviously he loves them too much to ever leave and refuse to pay. or at least that's what ds1s dsis mum thought

Bogeyface Mon 23-Jun-14 23:34:24

H never paid maintenance after his ex went away for a week when he had their son in the school hols, told H that DSS needed new shoes, uniform, coat.....new everything bascially and when she got back told everyone that she had paid for it with the maintenance that she saved up.

After that he took his son out every weekend and bought him whatever he needed, bought his monthly bus pass, paid for his school lunches every week, his club fees for his sport and all of his school trips. It always worked out to be about the same as his maintenance and often more.

But of course she told everyone that he didnt pay a penny for their son and he was judged appropriately. He never said anything about it at first but did end up explaining the situation after it started affecting his friendships.

scarlettsmummy2 Mon 23-Jun-14 23:34:36

Only 30% of fathers pay child maintenance. I know this as I work for a charity in this field.

Bogeyface Mon 23-Jun-14 23:37:31

However....my ex cut me off without a penny. Always played silly buggers with the CSA etc and eventually stopped seeing them. He wasnt that arsed anyway but his new GF (now wife) loathed him having anything to do with me so she actively supported him in this. Because of course he wouldnt do that to her and their 3 children.

Except he did.

And in my mind she has no right to complain about it because by her behaviour in helping and encouraging him to cut his kids off, she was telling him that she thought it was ok for him to do that. You reap what you sow.

fluffymouse Mon 23-Jun-14 23:53:47

Bogeyface I appreciate your honesty but don't think what your husband did was right. It sounds like he was being spiteful, for something which she may have not even said (chinese whispers).

WorraLiberty Tue 24-Jun-14 00:04:04

WooWooOwl sadly your post makes a lot of sense.

Bogeyface Tue 24-Jun-14 00:11:34

fluffly it wasnt spite, it really wasnt. I cant explain how I know without outing myself but just to say that he and I werent together until his son was in his early twenties so I have no axe to grind and that I know for sure what a piece of work she was. Not from him but from his family and friends. It would really help if I could explain but some of the things she did could really out H and me if I mentioned them here!

StillFrigginRexManningDay Tue 24-Jun-14 00:19:56

Oh my ex is paying for his child and I am a big bad cunt for cutting him out of dds life. Yep thats me. Well according to the old rumour mill.
Truth is we have not seen hyde nor hair of him in 15 years.

Oldraver Tue 24-Jun-14 00:25:25

I couldn't be with a person that actively avoided paying toward their child, it would be a deal breaker for me.

My 'Father' lied his way out of paying anything toward our upkeep, I have zero respect for such 'men'

Seventy6 Tue 24-Jun-14 00:30:28

I took the house in lieu of child maintenance, I worked out what he would have to pay over the years, and it was a similar amount to his equity. It has meant we have a better relationship as it is all sorted for good, and he is self employed so there would always have been suspicion. I don't earn much, but with tax credits I do alright. I would recommend it as a solution to anyone in a similar situation.

WorraLiberty Tue 24-Jun-14 00:30:28

Still, considering the huge amount of parents who get nothing from their exes, there have been very few replies from people to say they live with a partner who does not pay.

This is the imbalance that interests me.

Bogeyface Tue 24-Jun-14 00:39:01

Be fair Worra I dont think anyone would come on this thread and say "Yep, I am married to a deadbeat"

I am not married to a deadbeat but have already been told that what he did was wrong!

Lauren83 Tue 24-Jun-14 00:44:15

Mine pays, over what it should be and despite the ex stopping access for 6 months, she also tells the csa he never has her overnight too so she would get max payment (he has her 1-2 nights every week)

WorraLiberty Tue 24-Jun-14 00:46:50

True Bogey but what with how easy it is to name change, I just wondered whether anyone wanted to comment honestly.

I can only conclude that lots of people either believe their DPs are paying when they're not, or they just don't want to admit they live with someone who doesn't.

Or perhaps MN is some sort of magic wonderland where new DPs are the dog's bollocks in that respect grin

WorraLiberty Tue 24-Jun-14 00:48:02

Lauren, why doesn't he get witnesses to prove it?

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 24-Jun-14 01:00:39


I've touched on this a bit before on here, you may not have seen or indeed have any clue what I post as this is quite a busy site.

I have been married a few times (widowed once) after my late husband died I had a long term relationship and married a man who had children from a previous relationship he did not pay maintenance I was under the impression this was because they had a significant clean break arrangement instead of ongoing maintenance, he was always telling me all about this generous agreement they had both made. I discovered this was not true after him and I parted company and I walked away only taking what I had started with and had to fight tooth and nail to get anything via the CSA importantly his ex wife had lied to me when I asked her,to this day I do not know why she lied as if she had told me the truth I would have set up a standing order for her from my account.after we parted company i made a significant contribution towards his youngest child's uni related living expenses via mum because I felt such shame at not questioning the situation more effectively.

My current husband and I (estranged) parted company the day I saw some CSA paperwork and he had tried to claim an reduction in maintenance because of my children. We had no joint finances and he had no responsibility towards my children at all.

That was not the only reason, he was an arsehole but it was the tip of the iceburg.

I now have one of his children currently living with me and am very good friends with her mother. They had a private arrangement for what I consider to be a very low amount and he randomly stopped paying and that's why she went to the CSA but at the time due to the nature of our relationship I had no knowledge of his income and still don't.

Since then I have had one relationship he had 1 child from before and had a private arrangement with the mum to pay more than double the CSA amount the entire time we were together and for over a year after we parted company I ensured it was always paid without fail by paying it myself,I had forgotten I was still paying it until a thread on here reminded me.

I am so appalled by NRP's who don't pay that I would never involve myself seriously with one without having evidence that a fair amount was being paid and would no longer just take someone's word at face value.

I do know that my teenagers dad has had several GF who have listened to him bleat on about how he's such a wonderful dad and he pays what he can when the reality is he hast seen our child for 3 years and thinks he does not have to pay anything because I don't really need him to.why the latest believes him I'm not sure because he gave her his company in order to dodge it but there you go.

TillyTellTale Tue 24-Jun-14 01:02:20

I think that Mumsnet had, or has (when I'm optimistic) quite a solid backbone of women who have Standards in men. Like Interested In Own Children.

I tend to believe that women who are able to maintain some level of double-think regarding male parenting (such as "it's awful that my ex doesn't pay maintenance, but DP's ex is a grasping bitch for wanting maintainance) probably don't find the mumsnet culture such a fun environment to post in.

DottyDooRidesAgain Tue 24-Jun-14 01:06:00

Apologise I have not RTT but DH has never paid actual monthly maintenance.

He has pad for:

School uniforms & bits & bobs 3 times per year (plus extra trousers & t-shirts) 12 years.
Summer & winter wardrobes. Plus extra for holidays.
All school trips.
All after school clubs/football/rugby plus kit.
Main gift at Christmas plus £200 for smaller gifts. (For 20 years)
Their (twins) cost of holidays with ex plus spending money. Plus the holidays he took them on.
Rent & bond on 3 flats since leaving home for uni.

Exw would not accept a penny in actual cash. Never paid monthly but no less of a father.

I know this is the exception not the rule.

HavanaSlife Tue 24-Jun-14 01:14:57

Ds1s dad didn't want to give me money he wanted to buy things instead, as I might spend it on myself. No, it was just another way of trying to control me. It never happened anyway, he never paid a penny or did anything else. Every time the csa got hold of him he went well, he's paid less than a years worth of maintenance in 19 years.

My friends ex pays half what he should a month to her in cash, the other half he buys stuff for them, pays for their activities, mobile phones, goes half on school trips. This suits them both.

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 24-Jun-14 01:16:25

The thing is I'm treated quite oddly for questioning any NRP's I know (I don't randomly question them just ask leading questions of the ones I might be inclined to ask out) and they all without fail say much the same thing

"I see my kids when ever I can and I always pay" it's usually considered to be intrusive questioning.i always bottle out before it actually gets to asking for a date so I've never got to the point of asking to see bank statements or interrogating the ex.

I'm guessing people who do probably feel uncomfortable asking until emotions are involved and by that point they feel its to late because they are already involved or have fallen for the my ex is a bitch hook line and sinker.

I do know I would view anybody that described their ex in the absence of a none molestation order as a cunt because part of me would always be thinking "I wonder what their view on the situation would be"

I am how ever going on a day date (what ever that is) on Wednesday he is not an NRP and mum pays (I know her) because I figure I can't be hoodwinked about active parenting in that circumstance.

WorraLiberty Tue 24-Jun-14 09:01:06

Those kids were definitely lucky to have you fighting their corner NeedsAsockamnesty

Bluetroublethree Tue 24-Jun-14 09:23:32

My cousin's husband is like this. He's got a child of 7 that he only pays for when he sees him, like a sort of daily rental. The child's mum will only allow him to see him if he picks him up from the house (perfectly reasonable) but my cousin won't allow the new husband to go to the house, or go with him (jealousy issues) so the little boy doesn't get seen. And then the mum doesn't get any money. Not surprisingly she's told them to sod off.
The cousin's new husband is pushing 40 and has never worked and doesn't sign on as he's his Dad's carer. He sees his dad weekly, but has his mobility car. The pair of them disgust me. What she can possibly see in him is beyond me and she seems to rewrite in her head what he's really like. sad

BadlyShavedYeti Tue 24-Jun-14 09:29:47

DP had periods of not paying maintenance, due to redundancy. It was the early 2000's and DP was in the construction industry and when the recession hit he was unemployed. As he wasnt earning his CSA stopped.

If we could have afforded to pay whilst he was unemployed we would have but simply did not have the funds to do so. We still took DSS out and paid for treats for him when he was with us - ice creams, sweets, cheap tat from the �1 shop!

DP's ex was very unhappy about the money stopping and I can see her point, DP's unemployment affected her too but it also affected us, we couldnt afford to pay the bills and it was a horrible stressful time for us.

When DP started work again for an agency his CSA started again, but after 6 months all the agency workers were laid off so we went through it all again.

I know it is not the question that was asked but there are other reasons why some parents dont pay.

TheXxed Tue 24-Jun-14 09:37:08

Bogey who did you husband contribute to his living cost, housing, electricity and rent. I am not sure how a bus pass lunches and clothes makes up the difference.

TheXxed Tue 24-Jun-14 09:38:22

*Meant to say how

bibliomania Tue 24-Jun-14 09:43:39

I have nothing against any of my exH's various girlfriends - never met any of them, but dd reports them as being nice. I know for a fact he would be showing off his generosity to dd in front of them - buying her anything she asks for, lots of clothes and toys etc. The girlfriends aren't in the wrong if they fall for his act. The fact he has never paid me a penny in maintenance over the years and has actively evaded the CSA is something he'd never disclose or else would explain away somehow. Knowing him, he'd probably claim he couldn't give me money directly because I'd drink myself insensible or something equally lurid.

I fell for my ex's lies for long enough, so I'd never blame another woman for being equally credulous.

BertieBotts Tue 24-Jun-14 09:48:19

My ex who never pays is constantly flitting between girlfriends, he doesn't live with anyone for long if at all so I don't know whether his girlfriends would describe him as a "DP". I would also expect any MNer who was with him to be told to LTB grin Obviously not all MNers are in wonderful perfect relationships but I think there is a higher proportion of people in healthy relationships on here than in RL, at least in my experience.

I think it's more that mumsnet is not a true representation of the UK/world as a whole. It's very skewed.

ProfessorBranestawm Tue 24-Jun-14 09:51:06

I would assume it happens a lot when the fathers have a low income job. If you earn below a certain amount (or are in receipt of certain income related benefits I believe) then you don't pay CSA if I recall correctly.

Of course this doesn't necessarily have to stop the low-earning fathers contributing in other ways even if they can't afford regular maintenance. If they refused to give what they can then I'd certainly call that deadbeat!

BertieBotts Tue 24-Jun-14 09:51:19

Although I do wonder if XP's more recent girlfriends know he has children, as one was adopted and he has no contact, and he hasn't seen DS for about 3 years and we live abroad. confused

fifi669 Tue 24-Jun-14 09:54:08

Ex agreed to take on 30k of debt when he split with his wife in lieu of maintenance. Funnily enough when he left me, he added her to the CSA claim so that I'd receive less. not that we see a penny

gamerchick Tue 24-Jun-14 09:55:30

icanseethesun you can't open a bank account? All you need for a birth certificate is the details.. I got a hold of my step granddaughters Easy enough for a savings account. Who told you you couldn't get it?

needaholidaynow Tue 24-Jun-14 09:57:04

My DP doesn't pay maintenance to his ex. Because they have her 50/50 and he pays towards extras. So yes I would admit it quite freely on here.

LuisSuarezTeeth Tue 24-Jun-14 10:03:16

I did have an ex who did this and I felt mighty uncomfortable about it. He didn't work but found money to spend on Xbox games etc.

Money was very tight indeed, but I felt it was so wrong I set up a payment to his ex for the two little boys.

Publicly I "supported" him in not paying, but privately I felt horrendous. I did indeed LTB in part because of this.

needaholidaynow Tue 24-Jun-14 10:03:38

*My DP doesn't pay maintenance to his ex for their daughter.

CrystalSkulls Tue 24-Jun-14 10:20:20

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WorraLiberty Tue 24-Jun-14 10:22:05

BadlyShavedYeti, could your DP not find say £5 per week when he was unemployed?

I know that doesn't sound much but £20 per month would go a long way towards buying shoes that they seem to go through so fast, or towards the gas/electric.

Petrasmumma Tue 24-Jun-14 10:31:31

It would be a deal breaker for me too. Unfortunately not a deal breaker for Ex's wife.

Booooooooooooooooooooo Tue 24-Jun-14 11:36:44

Sorry Bogey but that stinks.

Who is he to say what the maintenance should be spent on? Even the DWP don't say what JSA should be spent on.

My friend used to say how her DP used to buy things for his children because his Ex used to spend the money on herself and then he would end up buying essentials for them anyway. Then they split up, friend happened to have conversation with Ex. Ex was able to show evidence that DP had never ever contributed financially despite going through all of the correct channels - she had years worth of correspondence. Friend had been completely duped by him.

Booooooooooooooooooooo Tue 24-Jun-14 11:39:07

Oh and one of my best friends split up from her DP last year. He is self employed and apparently earns less than a quarter of what he did when they were together hmm

He apparently doesn't see why he should pay because she receives benefits. He forgets that the reason she receives benefits is that one of their children is severely disabled and needs round the clock care. He is scum.

BeeBlanket Tue 24-Jun-14 11:47:24

It would be a TOTAL dealbreaker for me too if I was with a man who had kids with his ex and shirked on maintenance.

But once my sister had a new boyfriend and told me he did this (even though he had money for booze and drugs) (yes, what a catch!). I was horrified and said how could she even consider him. She hadn't thought it was her business. She has terrible low-self-esteem and always chooses appalling men, however there are a lot of women out there who fall into that category.

NatashaBee Tue 24-Jun-14 11:49:31

DSD's mother said she didn't want any money from us. We worked out the approx amount it should be (where we live, both parents income is used in the calculation) and put it in a savings account for DSD when she goes to college. To be honest that was more at my instigation than DH's and it did change the way I think about him that he didn't step up and do it himself.

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 24-Jun-14 11:57:11

Even NRP's on means tested benefits are meant to pay £7 pw (used to be £5 still 5 if via CSA but £7 if the new service)

So someone being unemployed is no excuse, contribution based jsa is not based on household income

BadlyShavedYeti Tue 24-Jun-14 11:57:53

Worra, instead of giving the ex money whilst he was unemployed we paid for a hobby that DSS did. Ex was happy with this and she suggested it. Of course the cost of the hobby was nowhere near the amount he paid for maintenance but paying for the hobby was something we could just about afford.

DP was not entitled to any kind of benefits and because I worked we were not entitled to any help with rent or council tax. But that is another rant for another topic.

WorraLiberty Tue 24-Jun-14 12:12:08

Oh fair enough if the ex was happy with that

You said in your earlier post that she was very unhappy that the money stopped...that's why I thought £5 or something per week/£20 per month, might at least help towards the odd pair of shoes etc.

unlucky83 Tue 24-Jun-14 12:13:38

Final nail in the coffin of one of my relationships.
I was quite young, no DCs and some things never really entered my head.
BF had a DC when he was 17 he never saw (didn't pay maintenance) - all the mother's family's fault - I believed it.
He also had another - the mother already had one DC. He would pick them up (his DD and DSD) and take them out on the odd Sundays - once a month maybe. Said he didn't like taking her out because he had to see his ex and she was horrible to him. I never met her. When he did take them out he gave his ex £20. Again this didn't really register with me. (The lacklustre parenting - or the fact he was probably not going to avoiding giving her any money - he used to complain she had asked him for 'extra' money!)
Then she went to the CSA...He 'sorted it' so he had to pay less than the '£20 per week he'd been paying before' hmm...
eg. He shared a really nice flat with a friend and paid less than half the rent (friend wanted to live there and BF couldn't really afford it) on his CSA form he was paying most of the rent etc etc..it was when he was telling me how clever he had been that the penny finally dropped and I realised what a bastard he was ...

squoosh Tue 24-Jun-14 12:13:48

Personally, a man who avoids supporting his children would be as attractive to me as a man who has a history of domestic violence. Would never go there in a million years.

BadlyShavedYeti Tue 24-Jun-14 12:30:07

She wasnt happy at first as the money just stopped, when the construction industry imploded people were laid off that day, so the money stopped straightaway. It took a few weeks for DP and his ex to come to the comprimise about the hobby, she was really really pissed off that the CSA stopped and let us know verbally quite a few times.

I think in the end she realised that we were not being unemployed to spite her and it left us in a big financial hole, so paying for the hobby was something that both parties were happy with.

smilingthroughgrittedteeth Tue 24-Jun-14 12:53:40

My dp is currently paying £5 per week through the csa to his ex, its been a big drop from what he used to pay and he hates that he isnt properly supporting his children, but hes been off work for the past 18mths after a back injury and getting ssp.

I wish we could pay more but we have barely enough money to pay our bills and keep a roof and food on the table for when the kids are here.

before hes accident he paid £200 a month plus for all school uniform and school trips, school dinners and out of school activities.

He isnt a deadbeat dad although he currently feels like he is.

I dont think I could be with him if he felt differently

MammaTJ Tue 24-Jun-14 13:00:33

My now ExH did pay maintainance for a long time, then his DD was staying with us more and more in more and more scruffy clothes. We then went shopping, bought her clothes that fit and he stopped paying. He continued to buy her clothes, he continued to have her more than 50% of the time. Then she actually officially moved in with us.

When my Ex left me, he was pretty much spot on with payments, not arranged through the CSA. He paid a regular amount and half of agreed things, like clubs and uniform. This was because he could see I was spending the money on our DD.

needaholidaynow Tue 24-Jun-14 13:26:29

smiling Your DP is anything but a deadbeat dad. People who don't know his full situation would be quick to judge and that's the sad thing. Not all dads who can only afford to pay low amounts are deadbeats- sometimes it is just a reflection of their low income how much maintenance they can afford to pay.

HavanaSlife Tue 24-Jun-14 13:34:46

No def not a dead beat dad smiling, when ds1s dad decided to go se he was earning over a grand a week. Csa gave them a year until their books were in order then and he was told to pay a fiver a week. I never received a penny. Now that's a dead beat dad

smilingthroughgrittedteeth Tue 24-Jun-14 13:41:00

Unfortunately his ex doesnt feel the same way she decided to stop contact unless he pays more although ironically he was struggling to pay £100 for the first 6mths but she was adamant that my money should be included and then went to the csa (it had previously been a private arrangement) which is how it ended up at the £5 per week.

I do wish people wouldnt judge unless they know all the details

needaholidaynow Tue 24-Jun-14 13:58:46

Your money is completely irrelevant. It would be completey voluntary for you to pay her anything. My DP's cousin's ex did something similar where she wanted more, went to the CSA and she ended up getting less. She too stopped contact. Just keep going as you are, you can only afford to pay what you can afford and if our DP isn't working what on earth can you do if you need to pay your own bills, mortgage/rent, food shop etc...

needaholidaynow Tue 24-Jun-14 14:00:40

*your DP, not our DP. Unless we are both with the same bloke lol.

tiredandsadmum Tue 24-Jun-14 14:01:35

My ex does pay maintenance, but despite earning a very high 6 figure salary he paid less than the CSA figures. We then had to go to court for finances including spouse and child maintenance. Just over 1 year later he is making noises about going back to court. His partner actively supports and encourages that behaviour, despite the obvious stress that it causes to me and by implication DS. I expect they tell all their friends that he pays far in excess of what he should. Only he doesn't and it took a court order to get him to adequately pay. I have a problem with a man who short changes his old family and is mean.

BurningAsh Tue 24-Jun-14 14:57:32

I lived with and had a child with such a man. For 3 years I didn't know his wife and children even existed, and I saw his bank statements so knew no money was going to them.

When I did find out about the children, our DS was already a few months old. Initially he denied the children were his biologically. Eventually he admitted they were his (I'd figured it out for myself by that point).

He still doesn't pay for them. I recently put in a claim for child maintenance and had his wife called me, asking why I've done such a thing. 'She has 2 children with him and never resorted to asking for maintenance, just lived off her benefits, so why was I asking for maintenance when I only have 1 child with him'

fedupbutfine Tue 24-Jun-14 15:20:55

This was because he could see I was spending the money on our DD.

are you suggesting that the common experience of an NRP not paying maintenance is because the NRP can't see what the money goes towards? or because they believe that the money won't go on the children? do you believe if I gave my ex a list of my incomings/outgoings and accounted for every penny he would then start paying maintenance?

I would hazard a guess, because I manage (and manage very well) that a full appraisal of my spending habits would just add fuel to the 'she doesn't need it' fire. No, I don't need it for us to be able to eat and go out and wear clothes and pay for childcare and for the house to be warm....but that surely doesn't mean my ex shouldn't contribute, does it?

WorraLiberty Tue 24-Jun-14 15:27:28

Scruffy clothes don't necessarily indicate that the money isn't being spent on the children.

It just indicates that clothes might not be high on the priority list, before food/gas/electric/shoes, etc etc...

fifi669 Tue 24-Jun-14 15:32:34

fedup I'm guessing the point was if you're handing over £500 a month and ex is spending £100 on the child for clothes/activities etc, that the extra £400 is way over the cost of extra rent/utilities/food for the time the child is with you. Not to mention that the maintenance should only be half. So in some circumstances you would in effect be bankrolling your ex. Whether you can afford to do it alone is irrelevant.

I can imagine that would be the case with footballers? If they had a one nighter and got a woman pregnant, they could be supporting them both for a very long time. Imagine the CSA payments!

SuperSnowWoman Tue 24-Jun-14 15:36:32

My DH pays and has the child 50% of the time. I am fully supportive of him not paying her for anything but to both split out of the ordinary costs as they come up.

Why he pays for all the costs here, plus pays his ex for costs there, plus she receives child benefit, I have absolutely no idea how this is logical.

It's fair to say she said she was 'entitled' and 'he has to pay' when questioned about it. I'd rather the few hundred pounds put into savings for the child- but that would mean she'd lose a little control I guess.....

Bonsoir Tue 24-Jun-14 15:39:30

I think it is quite common for non-resident parents to feel "pissed off at subsidising their ex's chosen lifestyle". That is certainly how my DP's exW feels (DSSs live with us and to all intents and purposes she makes no decisions about their lives but she has to contribute financially to the costs of their upbringing and education). TBH I do understand why she feels pissed off even if I think she brought the situation upon herself. She did her utmost not to contribute while all the while dissimulating that fact from all those around her - so she simultaneously felt ashamed and pissed off. Not easy.

MaxPepsi Tue 24-Jun-14 15:50:21

My DH pays through the CSA direct from his wage, so looking at his bank account would not indicate that he makes payments at all.

He doesn't pay for anything extra and we never see his daughter.

Her choice to stop contact and after taking advice from several quarters we have decided not to pursue it. We can only hope she will want to re-establish contact when she is a little older. He's done nothing wrong and it breaks his heart.

I don't give a shit what people think of him or me about the fact he doesn't fight to see her, until this thread I hadn't even given it any thought.

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 24-Jun-14 16:16:06

max direct from employer payments meaning he was a previous refuser?

fifi669 Tue 24-Jun-14 16:20:31

My ex doesn't have a bank account so it would have to go via wages

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 24-Jun-14 16:23:29

The CSA do not deal with income over a certain amount.

And why the hell should a very high earner get to say I live in the lap of luxury but Claire down the road supports her kids on nmw so I am only going to contribute towards that standard of living?

WorraLiberty Tue 24-Jun-14 16:23:31

How does he get paid without a bank account?

MaxPepsi Tue 24-Jun-14 16:24:18

No, meaning his ex wife took him to the CSA after her friend told her she'd get more money from him that way.

He opted to have it deducted at source so she couldn't accuse him of not paying again.

NotActuallyAMum Tue 24-Jun-14 16:24:27

I'm happy to admit my DH briefly didn't at one stage

Short version of the story is that he paid at first, his DD came to live with us after a while and when DH asked his ex for maintenance he was told to F off, so when DSD went back to her Mum and DH was asked to start paying again he told her that she could have a year without any - as he had done - and he'd start paying in 12 months, which he did

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 24-Jun-14 16:27:27

Fair enough max I forget they let you do that

Callani Tue 24-Jun-14 16:31:39

I have heard from SO many people "Oh, well NRP pays X (never more than £30 a week) for their kids but RP always just spends it on his/herself" and I just think - you stupid, blind fools.

Honestly so many people fall for lines about "I'd give more if I knew it was going to the kids" it makes me sick - friends, parents, partners all somehow believing that you can raise children on air and sunshine.

I make a firm point correcting such idiotic assumptions.

MaxPepsi Tue 24-Jun-14 16:33:15

No problem needs

He does now regret that decision however, as does she, as his employer has up to 8 weeks to pay the money across to the CSA meaning his ex has to wait for the money and they tell him his account is in arrears so take double the following pay day then have to go back to reducing it the pay day after. touch wood that hasn't happened for a while now so everyone's money is messed about with!

captainproton Tue 24-Jun-14 16:47:41

My dh ex has tried to deny cohabitation for 3 years in order to get a better divorce settlement, tried to blackmail Dh to get him to give her his charge when she moved and remarried, claims things like school trips/passports/uniform are more expensive then they actually are.

Latest we had DSS beg dad for money as apparently they are broke at home and can't survive. Yet DSS told dh last week that they are all staying in a fancy hotel the night of his sister's prom. Then realised he shouldn't have mentioned it because they are supposed to be skint. She can do what she wants with her money but getting your son to beg his dad for money to help survive is a real low. And no DSS was not asking dh to give the money to him on her behalf, she wanted more money pcm.

Anyway we don't believe any of her crap anymore. We pay half of everything, and then all his mobile, and minimum as per CSA. It comes out of our joint account so I know he pays.

When she was trying to blackmail us we incurred lots of legal fees and put us through hell. She wanted us to waste money fighting her. She now gets £320pcm a drop from £400pcm.

We spend a lot on DSS and the drop goes towards replacing our savings.

Im sure the £80 a month drop pisses her off, but seeing as DH never had to pay that amount in the first place I don't care. You can't treat people like that and still expect them to be generous.

bibliomania Tue 24-Jun-14 16:48:27

I agree, Callani. I lost some respect for a friend of mine when she justified her DP's decision to minimise his child support payments because "He buys lots of things for his dc's while they're with us". Fine if it was a 50/50 arrangement, but it most certainly was not. Splurging on your dcs when they are with you is not the same thing as covering the boring old day-in day-out cost of bringing them up.

WorraLiberty Tue 24-Jun-14 16:53:31

Exactly bibliomania, all splurging on the DCs does is make the NRP look very generous in the kid's eyes.

Kids don't realise that 'boring' things like food/gas/electric/clothes/uniforms/child care/rent/council tax etc...have to be paid for too.

fifi669 Tue 24-Jun-14 16:53:37

worra he is paid cash, works in a pub. As well as his undeclared cash in hand work....

needs do you really think that having a baby by a footballer means you (not the child) should be entitled to a certain standard of living? Going by the max of £3,000pm and the old rates, that's around £24,000 a year for shagging a footballer. Amounts over the maximum are then decided via court so you could get even more! If I won the euro millions tomorrow I still wouldn't spend that much on a child.

Callani Tue 24-Jun-14 16:56:27

No it really doesn't compare at all does it biblio?

The worst for me was when my (poor, naive, 18 year old) cousin was talking about her uni flatmate whose ex "spent all her CM on nights out and dressy outfits and cigarettes"

After some serious eye rolling I pointed out that, as a student, her friend's CM was hardly likely to be paying ground breaking amounts and that seeing as his ex was working she was MORE than likely paying for her occassional night out from her own money. And that actually housing and raising a child probably costs more than the pitiful amount that her friend was giving...

Luckily I think she saw the light, but so many people are way too eager to believe the whole scrounging single mum ripping off the poor menz story.

fedupbutfine Tue 24-Jun-14 17:02:42

Not to mention that the maintenance should only be half.

Why? why should separated parents pay 50/50 towards the cost of bringing up their children when together parents would (rarely) split it 50/50? There are often huge discrepancies in salaries (my ex earns over 5 times what I earn) so why should I be paying half of all the children's costs? how is that fair or reasonable?

And with 3 children, I can assure you that the £130 a month my ex is supposed to pay towards our children (self employed, income in latest girlfriend's name) doesn't touch the sides. It costs me £140 a week just to go to work. He's not even paying 25% of our childcare costs, let alone anything else. I think it rare that that NRPs pay 50% of anything.

LtEveDallas Tue 24-Jun-14 17:05:32

I ended up paying for DSD when DH retired.

He went from being 'ordered' to pay �300 per month (CSA) to �77 per month (CSA). He topped that up to �100 and thought that was OK. I didn't, but could not see that it was any of my business. He was paying, and was paying what HE could afford, I was just picking up the slack elsewhere.

DSD Mum was not impressed. I got sick of the arguments, sick of the tattling, sick of the sneering from mum and tears from DSD.

First of all I paid for DSDs transport to school - �120 a month - behind DH's back. That bit me in the arse when I discovered 2 years later that DSD wasn't taking the transport, and hadn't been for over 18 months. Of course it came out during the course of a row which then caused problems between DH and I.

Since then DH has refused to pay more than the 'official' amount, but knows (and doesn't care) that I give DSD extra on top. That will stop soon if I don't get another job! DSD is actually an adult now, but earning a V low wage. We don't have to pay her anything, but will do so until we can no longer afford it ourselves.

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 24-Jun-14 17:08:56


I like the CSA/CMS/the courts believe a child should be entitled to a standard of living that reflects both parents standards of living.

If one parent is rich or both are then that child should have a better standard of living

That is why we have a % of income rather than a flat per child figure.

MyUsernameIsPants Tue 24-Jun-14 17:09:39

My ex pays maintenance. I've always tried to think of the money as a 'bonus payment' and not rely on it for bills etc just in case he messes me around. 7 years later and he hasn't missed once. Thankfully he's a great dad.

My father OTOH is a shit dad. He left my DM with 4 children and remarried a woman with 2 DC. They went on to have 2 DC together.

He never paid a penny for us 3 older children but was forced to pay for my younger brother + arrears after the CSA caught up with him. He tried to get it reduced because he had another family to provide for (bearing in mind he had a very well paid job and so did my SM)

I didn't speak to him for years even though he lived in the same town as me. My DM was very bitter about it (rightly so) but it wasn't until I got to 20 yrs old that I wanted to find out what his side of the situation.

I had that conversation with him. It was my DM's fault, she stopped contact, she was a bitch, he was devastated etc. I gave him one more chance to prove himself.

Guess what happened?

The only time I ever saw or spoke to him was when I made the effort. He forgot mine and DD's birthdays (mine is the day after step sisters, he didn't forget hers hmm) I would go to his with DD and there would be gifts and clothes for my step sisters DC but nothing for my DD. They would regularly have step sisters DC so she could go out on the piss but wouldn't take my daughter to school so I could go to work unless I changed her school (SS lived further away than DD's school)

The list goes on.

I don't understand why my SM would want to be married to someone like that. He still lives in the same town as me, I haven't seen or spoke to him for 4 years now.

You know what? Like fuck am I helping them in their old age. They can do one.

Meow75 Tue 24-Jun-14 17:14:50

I'm ashamed to say that my own BROTHER is one of these wankers. The kids are 18 and 17 now but he hasn't contributed anything since AT LEAST 2004.

I know this because my ex-SiL has shown me the letters and texts that he has sent over the years.

It is significant that I am still in touch with my ex-SiL 12 years after they divorced but I am NC with my wankbadger brother. It's not the sole reason, but it's a big factor.

Fortunately, my ex-SiL has remarried in 2003 and is extremely happy with a lovely bloke who I WISH was my brother sad

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 24-Jun-14 17:16:28

Sorry posted to soon.

But unless you intend on going down the "child automatically resides with wealthier parent" road then that does mean the resident parent of that child will also benefit.

As it should

GatoradeMeBitch Tue 24-Jun-14 17:29:16

I'm certain my ex DP is the type who tells people he pays child maintenance, and also does the 'sigh, I'd love to spend time with my ds, but it's just his mother, you know..' bit which results in sympathetic head shaking and tutting from all in the immediate vicinity. I'm sure that's why his parents cut off contact. He's so great at spin he should have gone into politics. In actuality he paid nothing for over three years and now benevolently hands me the princely sum of £40 a month as if he's doing me a great favour. He also has free access to DS and lives 5 minutes away. He doesn't see him.

DontPutMeDownForCardio Tue 24-Jun-14 17:33:14

I wouldn't judge a nrp who didn't pay maintenance when the rp has stopped contact for no good reason. The need for a relationship with both parents is just as important as maintenance, (barring abuse etc meaning a relationship is untenable.) Why should the rp have the power to stop contact on nothing more than a selfish whim?

squoosh Tue 24-Jun-14 17:36:35

Refusing to pay maintenance because the other parent is being a dick makes them a bit of a dick too.

riverboat1 Tue 24-Jun-14 17:37:47

Maybe generally speaking, the type of person who cares enough about parenting to join and post on mumsnet isn't the same type of person who has a DP who doesn't care enough to pay maintenance.

WorraLiberty Tue 24-Jun-14 17:39:14

Exactly squoosh, neither parent putting the child's welfare first

Needadvice5 Tue 24-Jun-14 17:39:45

My DP pays his ex monthly and has never missed a payment.

My ex has not paid a single penny since we separated 3years ago and gsgave up his job when I threatened him with CSA, his lovely new size 8 girlfriend is fully aware that he doesn't pay anything and seems happy with this.

WorraLiberty Tue 24-Jun-14 17:41:22

What does her size have to do with her being happy with him not supporting his kids? confused

minlillehus Tue 24-Jun-14 17:43:15

Excellent question worralibertyy. I couldn't contemplate a relationship with a man who didn't pay maintenance.

A man who paid it but grudged it would turn me off too.

minlillehus Tue 24-Jun-14 17:43:53

and I do wonder what my x told people. as he drove girls around in his new cars.

captainproton Tue 24-Jun-14 17:49:13

Squoosh, so long as the NRP is paying what they should be paying then I don't see a problem with the NRP refusing to pay more if the RP is trying to create hell for no real reason at all. Threatening to reduce contact in order to get more money is below the belt.

Sometimes NRP have other children to think of, they can't always justify paying more than the minimum.

squoosh Tue 24-Jun-14 17:51:51

captain I was responding to another poster who said they wouldn't blame a nrp for not paying any maintenance if they were being refused access to their child.

squoosh Tue 24-Jun-14 17:54:00

I just don't have time for people using maintenance or access as sticks to beat their ex with. Get over it and separate the bad feeling you have towards your ex from your parental responsibilities.

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 24-Jun-14 17:58:05

It's quite telling that it often involves later partners having to believe some crappy excuse.

When in reality the only valid excuse would be "I was honest,complied with information requests and got a nil assessment"

It also makes me cross when people complain about low amounts (when assessment is honest rather than based on fraudulent nonsense) if the ex is on jsa so gets the £7/£5 then they are not none payers.

whattheseithakasmean Tue 24-Jun-14 18:01:13

My mother's vile husband never paid maintenance for his children when he left his wife & they have now cut him out of their lives completely.

One of many red flags my mum should have heeded - he is a financial & emotionally abusive sack of shit.

minlillehus Tue 24-Jun-14 18:01:14

ps, and in agreement with the first few posters, yes, everybody would have believed my x paid maintenance, and in fact, his father wrote me a horrible letter. It was obvious his own parents believed he was paying maintenance.

Voodoobooboo Tue 24-Jun-14 18:01:14

My XP is long gone. I've no contact information for him or his family and no way of getting in touch. He left us to start a new life (his words via the police as I had him listed as. Missing person). I've never seen a penny from him and, quite honestly never really tried. The CSA are not desperately helpful in such circumstances.

I sometimes wonder if subsequent partners even know he has a son.

fedupbutfine Tue 24-Jun-14 18:07:37

Why should the rp have the power to stop contact on nothing more than a selfish whim?

why should the NRP have the power to stop maintenance on nothing more than a selfish whim?

captainproton Tue 24-Jun-14 18:08:25

Squoosh I'm with you on that one. We have never said we wouldn't pay maintenance, and I would probably leave DH if wanted to do that.

I feel bad sometimes but we have 2 young children and we saved up in order for me to go on longer maternity leave. We used it all on legal fees.

Everytime I hear one of her sob stories I fall for it, for it turn out to be a lie and I hate it that DH is right when he says she's not really.

It's people like her who give decent RPS a bad name.

HavanaSlife Tue 24-Jun-14 18:14:46

I would never stop access because my ex refused to pay maintenance, that would be stooping to his level. My dc arnt pay per view

minlillehus Tue 24-Jun-14 18:22:35

my x announced to anybody who'd listen that I wouldn't let him see the children. And then he never came.

MyUsernameIsPants Tue 24-Jun-14 18:33:24

My dad said my mum stopped contact to despite him. I remember sitting on the doorstep of my house waiting for him to pick us up. He never came.

MyUsernameIsPants Tue 24-Jun-14 18:37:04

The only time my mum did refuse contact was when my dad! who hadn't seen us for months, wanted me to be a bridesmaid at his wedding.
Only because his side of the family were coming from another country. It was all for appearances and to avoid the questions.

MammaTJ Tue 24-Jun-14 18:37:55

fedupbutfine and Worra, when I said he could see I was spending money on our DD, I meant in direct opposite of his first ex.

The child was always in ill fitting clothes. She never had tidy shoes. She never got a decent hair cut. This is in spite of her being a sales manager and her DP being an electrician. They had money. They had decent clothes. They had money from my then H. They just chose not to spend it on my DStD.

We did not have anywhere near as much money as they did. So, he bought clothes for her, fed her often, as she was with us often but something had to give, which meant giving his ex money.

My own DD did get bought clothes by me. My Ex knew that. That is why he happily handed over all that I asked, the agreed monthly amount plus half of all extras.

I don't think that RPs need to prove to NRPs that they are spending money on the DC to get maintainence, but sometimes it is just clear they are not. What should happen then?

DontPutMeDownForCardio Tue 24-Jun-14 18:40:58

My point being is that a nrp could be paying all they are bound to pay yet the rp still cuts contact. Maybe the only leverage they have is the maintenance. I can certainly empathise with that. It would take a good nrp a lot of soul searching to resort to that. But that situation doesn't get discussed much on mn, that of rps cutting contact for no good reason and there seems to be no redress in the law. In fact sometimes it's recommended on mn in order to get the exp to toe the line.

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 24-Jun-14 18:41:54

Are you saying she was actually neglecting the children?

Why didn't you report it.

Or was it just a matter of different standards?

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 24-Jun-14 18:44:08


We have this thing called court. That's the way you deal with contact refusals.

And I have never seen cutting contact advised on here as a way to get someone to toe the line I've only ever seen it when domestic abuse and child protection problems are an issue

BertieBotts Tue 24-Jun-14 19:30:26

My dad used to grill my DSis and I about whether our mum was working, whether we'd been on holidays, whether we had any expensive toys, what pets we had, whether she still smoked etc. It was really stressful, it wasn't just them being friendly and interested either, it was my dad trying to work out whether my mum was spending it "appropriately"

FFS, if you're feeding and clothing and housing the kids, the NRP should consider the maintenance going towards that. I don't get why it's such a contest for some men. It's just insulting. Especially when they put their two children through private school but my mum couldn't afford to buy me the state school branded jumper! I had hand knitted cardigans!

minlillehus Tue 24-Jun-14 19:57:51

Needsasockamnesty, I don't see why people shouldn't complain about low amounts. The resident parent incurs the bulk of the financial sacrifice for raising a child(ren) and is told (and made feel) that she is lucky and shouldn't complain! that , hmm, 10% of the financial sacrifice is covered by the child's own father. If mothers complain it's because there's still a misogynist way of thinking that mothers should just suck up that reality, bear 90% of the sacrifice of raising a child. To seek to equalise that sacrifice, exactly 50:50, that is seen as grasping.

minlillehus Tue 24-Jun-14 20:02:50

BertieBotts, that is my x's mentality. That I should have nothing left for me. If I have a penny left, then in his eyes, he should give less. The fact that he has a lot of disposable income and I have very little doesn't seem to register as an inequality in his eyes. He sees it as right. He genuinely believes that raising the children should cost me about 80% of what I have, and cost him about 20% of what he has. Are some people given £7 a week ? That is outrageous? What is wrong with the world.

BertieBotts Tue 24-Jun-14 20:07:21

Yeah, I never bothered going through the CSA with my ex because I would have got about £1.11 a week I think it worked out as, because he had a child with his new gf and she had a child and once the CSA took their percentage (Still angry that they have implemented this) - really nowhere near worth how annoyed it would have made him and how much of a sense it would have given him, in some way, that I owed him anything back or was accountable to him in any way.

DoJo Tue 24-Jun-14 20:09:46

My point being is that a nrp could be paying all they are bound to pay yet the rp still cuts contact. Maybe the only leverage they have is the maintenance. I can certainly empathise with that. It would take a good nrp a lot of soul searching to resort to that.

So the solution to a child being denied contact with one parent is to compound it by denying them the financial support they are entitled to as well? Because that should be the important thing in all this - what's best for the child. I agree with the last section of that quote though, because I don't believe a good NRP would resort to that.

Jayne35 Tue 24-Jun-14 20:13:15

I am a nrp and I pay the csa recommended amount.

Vintagecakeisstillnice Tue 24-Jun-14 20:19:10

One of OHs associates (I refuse to call him a friend) let's call him Dickhead 'cause that's what he is, is is one of these. He's very happy to tell people that he pays nothing towards his first child, because he not 'allowed' see her.

The fact that when he left them he moved nearly 350 miles away to be with then then OW (who didn't know she was the OW) and refused to even met half way had nothing to do with it...

He complained that she wouldn't put the 4 year old on a train or a bus alone. Seriously he thought this was a reasonable request! He stated in shock that his ex expected him to either met half way or pay for her ticket. Why should he have to pay to see his child after all he'd be feeding her all weekend.

When one of the lads pointed out that the little girl needed feeding housing etc 7 days a week every week he was told to fuck off, he didn't have kids he didn't know how hard poor Dickhead had it how much he missed his LO.

This all came out at a social event which was the same night OW found out she was the OW, he'd basically been living a double life. Give her her due she dumped him then and there.

That was a fun night.

He's since had another child with a different partner. When the subject came up again, brought up by him, she was vicious about defending his reasons for not paying, calling ex-wife all sorts even though she's never met her. Basically parroting what he'd said. Claimed if ex would be reasonable so would they.

Sadly she may be about to find out so how reasonable he may be as he appears to be up to his old tricks. Of course she may decide to carry on with the relationship, but looking at his track record his usual pattern is to line up a new woman before walking away without a word.

And while I thought she was very silly at the time I think she's going to learn the hard way, and worse there's going to be another child growing wondering why thier father isn't bothered with them.

She thinks their relationship is different, it maybe, problem is he still the same Dickhead.

MammaTJ Tue 24-Jun-14 20:29:17

Are you saying she was actually neglecting the children?

Yes. (the one child, not the children)

Why didn't you report it.

We didn't report it because it was easier to deal with it that to report to an overstretched inadequate SS. She was also very vocal in telling their DD every wrong her Dad commited. We were ok with her telling her that he had stopped paying her, because she could see for herself that we were spending the money on her.
Telling her he/we (most likely I) had reported her DM to SS would have been harder for DStD to deal with!

Or was it just a matter of different standards?

My standards are quite low, clothes that are clean and fit. Her clothes were always clean, no fault to find there, but they did not fit. DStD was embarrassed!

HavanaSlife Tue 24-Jun-14 20:30:54

When ds1s dad started the same old tricks with his gf as he'd played with me she left and stopped contact. ds1 didn't see his sister for nearly 5 years, he was 14 at the time. I don't think he will ever forgive his dad for that.

elastamum Tue 24-Jun-14 20:42:28

We have a non traditional approach to child support. At my suggestion, I gave up on claiming child support off my ex a few years back. It was a huge source of conflict.

We now have a joint account into which we pay money and I use that for clothes, phones etc. I pay all the bills at mine, him at his. OK I earn less and pay more as the DC spend more time with me, but I consider that I am lucky. In a very few years they will be off to uni. If we have big expenses, school fees, trips, computers, we split it 50:50. Since we started this, we have never argued about money. The DC go back and forwards between us as they like and we have keys to each others houses.

My DP doesn't pay or get maintenance either, as his school age DC live with him half the time.(his ex is the higher earner) He also has a joint account with his ex for expenses.

This might seem like a slightly unusual arrangement, and you have to get on well to share a bank account with your ex, but it works for us. I might be slightly worse off financially, but the benefits for the DC are huge.

NatashaBee Tue 24-Jun-14 20:48:19

You are very lucky, elastamum, I can only imagine what DH's ex would consider acceptable expenses grin

missymayhemsmum Tue 24-Jun-14 20:50:36

Just to put the other side, I want to give a big cheer for my goodhearted but previously unreliable exh who has paid modest but very useful maintenance year in year out for our two, even through uni, and even when he was skint and in and out of work.
Partly because his lovely lovely second wife has made sure he regarded it as his first financial commitment, not just because she adores the kids and is the world's kindest stepmother, but because she loves him and wants him to have self respect as a good dad.

EverythingCounts Tue 24-Jun-14 21:48:54

Missy - that's a really nice report to hear (wonders if stepmum is an MNer)

elastamum shock very impressed that anyone can have a joint account with an Ex!

Bonsoir Wed 25-Jun-14 05:44:50

My DP and his exW do the joint account thing. It doesn't solve all problems but does at least ring fence money to be spent on the DSSs. It's a bit of a hassle though, in practice, shopping for different family members with different bank cards.

Booooooooooooooooooooo Wed 25-Jun-14 08:58:00

OK I earn less and pay more as the DC spend more time with me...Since we started this, we have never argued about money...I might be slightly worse off financially, but the benefits for the DC are huge

Sounds like it works well for you and that's the most important thing, but do you think it would work as well if your EX was the one who was worse off?

Chunderella Wed 25-Jun-14 09:45:03

Social Services aren't likely to take an interest in a child simply because they have clean but ill fitting clothes and home cut hair.

NeedsAsockamnesty Wed 25-Jun-14 16:58:52

Social Services aren't likely to take an interest in a child simply because they have clean but ill fitting clothes and home cut hair

That's because it's not actually neglect

HavanaSlife Wed 25-Jun-14 17:24:23

No probably not neglect, although not very nice if you can afford clothes.

Saying that, I nev range sent ds1 and 2 down to their dads in their good, better fitting clothes as I never got them back and couldn't afford to keep buying new.

But no money off ds1s dad and £25 a week off ds2s, I don't think it was much to ask that they buy a few outfits for when they have them

Chunderella Wed 25-Jun-14 17:41:02

There's quite a big gulf between being a dick and being neglectful, though.

HavanaSlife Wed 25-Jun-14 17:55:35

It's not neglect in the let's phone ss kind of way, but sitting her thinking about it, putting your children in clothes that are too small must be uncomfortable for them and could cause issues of bullying if they are older children.

So I can see how people would say it's neglectful if the parent can afford new clothes but just isn't bothering. I'd probably just think the person was a selfish fucker though

Chunderella Wed 25-Jun-14 18:02:37

Either way, SS are never going to get involved simply because of that and the person who suggested it was being silly.

HavanaSlife Wed 25-Jun-14 18:07:09


carabos Wed 25-Jun-14 18:16:14

I spent 12 years trying to get my well-paid, from a wealthy family, remarried to a wealthy woman, ex husband to pay maintenance for our DS. His reasoning for not paying was that he didn't see him (his choice) so shouldn't have to contribute. He also did the "you can manage without extra money from me" thing.

At one court hearing, his solicitor went through the income statements and actually said out loud that the only reason I was "hounding" his client for money was greed, because my statement of affairs indicated that I could manage on my own income. I didn't "need" the money so I shouldn't be asking for it. Oh and the second wife was the one who drove the no-contact, no-money situation.

Rather than admit that he was a no contact, no support parent, XH went further and eventually got himself into a new neighbourhood and social group where no-one knew that he had a) been married before and b) had a child of that marriage. Including his DD by his second wife shock. His neighbours were somewhat surprised when through a rather weird set of circumstances me, DS1 (his) DS2 and DH moved into XH's village for a 9 month period and it all came out. DS1 looks identical to him, so there was no arguing it really.

Men like this (and the women who encourage and enable them) make my blood boil. They need putting in the stocks. angry

AliceDoesntLiveHereAnymore Wed 25-Jun-14 18:16:18

I do think the OP's question is interesting though. My stbx stopped paying maintenance months ago, when he moved in with his OW (they'd just gotten engaged). He literally quit his job, moved a few hours away to the OW's house (and her kids), and stopped paying maintenance. He hasn't spoken or seen the DCs since then.

The OW has just recently kicked him out, and I'm curious why (although I refuse to ask - I'll just have to always wonder I suppose). Was he behaving abusively as he did to us? Was it because he wasn't working (and most likely not trying that hard to find a job)? Did she know that he wasn't paying maintenance - she obviously knew he wasn't seeing his DCs.

BruthasTortoise Wed 25-Jun-14 18:23:01

My DH doesn't pay maintenance for my DSSs because he is the RP. Their Mother doesn't pay maintenance because "I gave birth to them and I'm a woman and women don't pay maintenance." When CSA finally managed to get a attachment on her wage she quit her job. Classy woman hmm

needaholidaynow Wed 25-Jun-14 18:47:56

"I gave birth to them and I'm a woman and women don't pay maintenance"

How deluded is she??? confused

BruthasTortoise Wed 25-Jun-14 18:54:30

She genuinely believes that because she voluntarily signed over the child benefit to DH when she left him and the boys for her new fella that it takes care of her contribution to their upkeep. To the point that the one time she kept them for four days she asked DH for the ChB as "he wasn't paying for them that week". She has her own issues though and it must be hard for any woman to accept that she gave up on being fully involved in her DCs life for a man who left her after a few years when a younger woman came along.

NeedsAsockamnesty Wed 25-Jun-14 21:52:13

Either way, SS are never going to get involved simply because of that and the person who suggested it was being silly

I was the person who asked if the mother was neglecting the kids ad if so why it was not reported.

I asked because of the sheer amount of times on threads like these the amount of utter bollocks responses that say "but she does not spend it on the kids their clothes and house are xyz and the food they eat" insert any word intended to imply actual neglect.

When in reality what they really mean is " I'm so much better than her/him my standards are higher but I like to throw around insults about her/him"

keepyourchinupdear Wed 25-Jun-14 22:08:10

What if a man wanted his 'fling' to terminate? What if the woman uses her child like a weapon to get what she wants? What if the woman is a shit mother/person? I think men are too quickly demonised. Women should have equal accountability too.

NeedsAsockamnesty Wed 25-Jun-14 22:49:52

They do keep we are talking about NRP's some of those are mothers.

There is no excuse at all to not be paying the correctly assessed amount of maintainance if you are a NRP even if your ex is a cunt.

DoJo Wed 25-Jun-14 22:55:19

Even a parent using their child as a weapon isn't able to magic gas, electricity, mortgage payments, school uniform and food out of thin air - a child living with such a parent deserves to be supported even if circumstances beyond the child's control make it difficult for the NRP.

McPhee Wed 25-Jun-14 23:06:02

Ex pays nothing towards Dd. In the last month we have received £1.78. He is living, although not officially or he would get his benefits cut, with his new GF. She is fully aware he pays nothing towards any of his children, yet thinks the sun shines out of his arse.

One day, she will wake up. They both disgust me.

He has 4 children, and supports none of them. Oh, but he will throw his toys out of the pram and send solicitors letters of you don't do what he wants. Funny how can can pay for paper, but not for clothes or food for his children. Oh, he can also afford to smoke, and drink farking energy drinks. Why he needs them I don't know. He does fark all to use energy hmm


OleOleOle Thu 26-Jun-14 00:04:26

My ex paid his ex, £200* a month child maintenance for their son. He and I went on holiday and didn't bring gifts back for their son. The ex went off her head over this. The rage lasted for days and said she was going to the CSA. CSA calculation came back at £120*. He reduced the payment.

*may not be the exact amounts. It was back in the nineties and my memory isn't great.

He was a tightwad twunt. His exw, me and his next exw all had lucky escapes. I see on FB he's recently had his 3rd marriage. The current W seems nice, pity.

VirkeligRodet Thu 26-Jun-14 00:05:39

exactly dojo

My x got confused between being preventing from seeing children, and my not bending over backwards to facilitate that for him at his convenience. He couldn't understand the difference. ie, I had repeatedly said that he could see them, but he never arranged it. He wanted me to drive them over to his house. And then come and collect them. I waited for him to initiate something. A request to visit, a suggestion for an outing.........

Snatchoo Thu 26-Jun-14 00:28:07

My DH doesn't pay it as he's out of work - has been for 18 months now sad

But I do smile and I'm happy to. I would feel like an utter cunt if I didn't - I earn a good wage, it's not his or his son's fault DH was made redundant.

SinisterBuggyMonth Thu 26-Jun-14 00:31:11

Similar situation to brurther here. When DP and his ex split they initially had joint custody with DP paying maximum amount of maintenance. That didn't work out for long, but when we got a flat and dss came to live with us full time DP's exW kicked off about the maintenance stopping and went after him for spousal maintenance, which obviously didn't happen. She got the house from the divorce, because it was DSs's home, but after he stopped staying over (mainly due to her drinking and attacking her boyfriend) she sold the house, pissed away all the cash and now renting off her boyfriend. She hardly sees her DSs and has contributed nothing but still gets the child benefit.

Regardless what sex you are, break up can sometimes highlight a useless parent.

Oh and my parents divorced and my DAd never paid a penny, but my mum never stopped him seeing me. Sometimes I feel I've been fucked over twice by the whole maintenance thing.

JoffreyBaratheon Thu 26-Jun-14 00:32:28

My ex has never paid a penny for the kids, now 12 and 13... He is loaded, though. And I don't know if he has had any other partners since I split with him about 10 yrs ago, but at one point he was sending me emails claiming him and his 'partner' had a baby and were about to have another, but because I was evilz she didn't want my kids to ever meet their half sister/brother/gonk whatever it was. I just had this really strong feeling he was making it up and after a year or so he admitted the new family never existed.

He was on Incapacity Benefit so CSA said he had to pay £0 because he was mental. Yet all along he had a flat in London, inherited a third of a London house worht about a million, and had hundreds of thou in the bank from other bequests/scams etc. He now runs in godly circles - did the Alpha Course at a C of E church in Holborn, and he told all his mates there he pays for the kids, and that a court order said he could see them but I am evilz and refused.... (court order actually denied him any contact at all).

Later, he harassed me, was found guilty in a court of law, yet got off with a suspended sentence as these Alpha course enablers were character witnesses. Every one of them heard the evidence, knew he was a criminal and knew he had never supported his kids. Do they give a shit? No. But they do strike me as mentally vulnerable themselves so I'd guess they might be where he has managed to finally capture a new partner. (It's the christians or a Thai mail order bride). And she will be told he supports his kids, I am certain.

What matters is the kids know he doesn't. So they have no intention of seeing or meeting him even when they hit 16. You reap what you sow. As the dodgy Holborn Alpha course should have warned him.

Calminacrisis Thu 26-Jun-14 09:39:04

My ex and I initially had a private arrangement worked out through mediation. He reneged on that at will and messed around with mortgage payments. Then HE went to the CSA thinking this would give him lower payments - it did because of the fact they only looked at two to three months worth of payslips. The payslips they saw neatly coincided with a period in which he had scheduled surgery and therefore had a much reduced apparent income. I begged the CSA to consider the fact that he was in fact a 50% tax payer so clearly had a much higher income then they thought but once the CSA had their blinkers on, that was it. For two years, I watched as he bought (and wrote off) a top end car, went on numerous foreign breaks, bought the deluded new gf an engagement ring whilst I robbed Peter and paid Paul. I went from IS to working p/t and managed, after a struggle to make ends meet. Ex is of the mindset as described on here that he would see everyone go without rather than pay money to me. Quite what he thinks I do with it, apart from buy uniform x3, food, rent, utilities etc etc, I don't know. The CSA have finally admitted they cocked up. A proper investigation revealed ex owes arrears for the past two years, his maintenance was upped by 50%. His response? He now wants to have his three dds overnight as often as possible, having previously struggled to fit them in to his busy social life. Why? He gets a reduction for the nights they stay. I have no wish to use them as a pawn but it sticks in my throat to know the motives behind his actions. Even his gf has admitted to me that she realises he acts like a dick towards his dds.

needaholidaynow Thu 26-Jun-14 09:48:51

But I do and I'm happy to. I would feel like an utter cunt if I didn't - I earn a good wage, it's not his or his son's fault DH was made redundant.

That's fine if you're happy to and can afford it. But remember, other people can't and/or won't but that doesn't make them utter cunts.

IneedAwittierNickname Thu 26-Jun-14 14:55:02

The amount and reliability of maintenance from my ex is totally affected by whether he is in relationship or not.

When we split he paid the amount we agreed on based on CSA rates. IIRC it remained the same once he moved in with his gf (who was incidentally the ow)

Then they split up and he moved in with his dad. Occasionally then I'd hear " why should I pay you to sit around doing fuck all, get a job I'm sick of paying you" The fact that we had jointly decided that I should be a sahm, and extortionate childcare costs meant returning to work would be stupid was apparently irrelevant.

Sometimes he'd say he didn't believe I was spending the money 'correctly' and that he'd order my food shopping instead of paying me shock

Then he moved in with his current gf and her 2 dc. (they've since had 1 together too) and became unreliable. I went to the CSA. He gleefully told me maintenance would b reduced as he is 'responsible' for her dc (she messaged me at one point gloating that she claimed CSA from her ex, as well as mine being responsible).
At one point he moved out as him living with her affected her benefits, but as I couldn't prove that to the CSA they still made the reduction for her dc.

He has since, with her encouragement, quit his job and was ordered to pay me £5 per week. They've asked the CSA to reassess as they can't afford it as they "have a baby" yet his just done his motorbike test, bought a bike, a new (to them) car etc etc.

I couldn't be with a man like that, and have ended relationships. My mum said one of the things she loves about my step dad was the fact he always paid maintenance to his ex and would never have dreamed of cutting it.

Snatchoo Thu 26-Jun-14 21:52:21

Jesus, Needa - chip on your shoulder much?!

I know that - I would feel a cunt as DSS is 13 and I have known him for ten years, plus I have a fairly good relationship with his mum.

Which is why I didn't offer any opinion about what anybody else said.

Molly333 Thu 26-Jun-14 22:02:49

Damn good point smile

IneedAwittierNickname Thu 26-Jun-14 22:38:51

snatchoo I was just reading your comment (thinking for some reason it was aimed at me) and thinking "wtf?" then realised you were talking to someone else grin

needaholidaynow Fri 27-Jun-14 09:10:07

Snatchoo I thought you were insinuating that if someone doesn't pay maintenance for their partner if he loses his job or whatever then it makes them utter cunts. Even if you were only referring to yourself.

Snatchoo Fri 27-Jun-14 18:31:47


I've been on MN long enough to know that the written word can sometimes be misconstrued so I try to be forthright and specific smile

NeedsAsockamnesty Sat 28-Jun-14 16:42:14

I'm quite happy to have a chip on my shoulder about certain topics.

And stand by my view that if you are a NRP of any gender and you don't have 50:50 then who cares if you didn't want a child,don't like your ex or what ever you should be paying the required amount towards supporting your child

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