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We don;t want to involve CSA because things are fairly amicable, but AIBU

(26 Posts)
passingtime Mon 15-Aug-11 11:31:56

DP's ex is kicking up a huge fuss over £10 this week. We are literally so broke we can't put gas in the meter so are relying on electric over/microwave and hot showers (not a huge deal I know)

We have given her £10 less than normal because we physically could not afford to giver her more. We did a carboot sale yesterday and their kids came along so she has rang dp shouting that she knows we made £130 at carboot...yes we did, towards our rent arrears. We sold stuff we did not even want to sell!

I am really really angry with her attitude because we are so accomodation with her normally. We have the kids MORE than 1/2 the week, she never feeds them before they come either (even when dropping them off at 11am they will arrive with empty tums)

Whenever she knows I am not at work she insists I collect the kids (do doesn't drive) and we spend an awful lot of money more when we have the kids at ours.

AIBU to think she is being completely out of order? We have the kids at her convenienece every single time and have cancelled plans at the last minute because she wants to go out herself or has forgotten to tell us about an extra shift etc.

I am starting to think we should lay down the law a little more, but things have been amicable (thanks to our being so accommodating) so far and I worry this could open a huge can of worms

passingtime Mon 15-Aug-11 11:32:51

*accomodation not accomodation sorry!

FreudianSlipper Mon 15-Aug-11 11:38:35

yes you need to set soem ground rules (rather your dh does). these should be flexible when children are involved but to suit everyone not just one person

it really is up to your dh to do this, it will open a can of worms but she is allowed to be selfish and she is taking advantage of the situation

stripeywoollenhat Mon 15-Aug-11 11:41:03

why is anyone paying maintenance if the care of the children is equally split?

oldraver Mon 15-Aug-11 11:41:32

Well if you are having them more than half the week I would go to CSA as they will take this into account. Or you could have them fulltime at yours ?

gillybean2 Mon 15-Aug-11 11:43:48

If, as you say, you have the dc more than half the week then surely you are techically the resident parents. Or do you just mean in the holidays?

How amicable are things really if there is this much fuss over £10?
If this is that important to her then she must be in deep financial straits or there are bigger issues involved. Time for a frank discussion if things are amicable this should be relaitvely easy for your P and ex.

passingtime Mon 15-Aug-11 11:43:59

I dont know stripey we earn more (normally - dp is now out of work) than her and I think she is bitter about it and feels entitled iyswim.

I do think she can see that DP's life is a lot better in every sense since we met. She thinks that because i have a good career we can afford the amount we give her but it is just simply not the case.

passingtime Mon 15-Aug-11 11:45:20

gillybean its all the time. Becase its not a 'set arrangement' I find it hard to keep track of how much more we are having the girls than she is. We also pay towards anything she buys for the kids too. I think she is taking us for a complete ride

sleepevader Mon 15-Aug-11 11:46:06

There are two issues here.

The maintenance - Yes she should be paid right amount and right time. Its what she has budgeted for. If my ex was late paying I would be understanding. If my DP was late paying his ex all hell would break loose. It depends on what time of relationship you have. DPs ex is quite well off but would use it against him as she seeks conflict. My ex is skint but always pays. Sometimes I give him money to take out son swimming. Its about putting the children first

The other issue is the fact you have the children and see them so much which is lovely but unfortunately you dont have the financial assistance such a half the CHB or Tax credits. Its difficult feeding extra months when moneys tight. The least I would expect is breakfast to be given! How old are the children? Is it due to them not having enough time?

We feed my DPs children 2 days a week tea and all day at weekend. Our income has to accomadate it and csa payments dont take that into account. Its tough. She wont allow overnight stays either unless she wants to go somewhere. You just have to rise above it!

AuntiePickleBottom Mon 15-Aug-11 11:47:48

passingtime csa will not even take your income into consideration

if he is ot earning she will be entiled to nothing

passingtime Mon 15-Aug-11 11:49:18

They are 13 and 6.

I agree we should pay on time and correct amount. I am just so mad that we have literally moved mountains to help her lately and she still had a huge go at dp over £10. We also said to her that she would only have to wait until wednesday for the remaining £10

I agree, I will have to rise above it, but first I want do and I to work out a proper arrangement

sleepevader Mon 15-Aug-11 11:50:07

Have just read your other posts.

Its really this simple. You can 't afford to carry on this way. You are in debt and the children are the ones who suffer.

After her lack of empathy over £10 DP needs to advise her to go to the CSA as he has no income at present. Let her have the assessment done by a third party and pay what they calculate. It will probably be a £5 per week deduction from his JSA.

sleepevader Mon 15-Aug-11 11:51:41

My post about maintenance was before I realised he was out of work at present. Obviously there has been a change recently and you have tried to continue. Ifs its crippling you then you cant continue.

ProcrastinatorGeneral Mon 15-Aug-11 11:53:11

If you have record of previous payments made, I would suggest your partner starts a new claim with the CSA. If you have no records, she may shaft you completely if you do as they may assume nothing has ever been paid.

sleepevader Mon 15-Aug-11 11:53:15

Also keep a diary of when you have the children.

Does she work?

oldraver Mon 15-Aug-11 11:53:19

Well if your DP is out of work then I would remind her that technically he is only bound to give her £5 a week out of JSA (if he is getting it, I dont know what the rules are. If you are still honouring the maintenence payment then she ought to think herself lucky

passingtime Mon 15-Aug-11 11:56:42

Yes she works part time. There is nothing to stop her working full time now as dp has the children so often due to being out of work. We are saving her money during the holidays on childcare

porcamiseria Mon 15-Aug-11 11:56:43


ooops sorry caps lock

sleepevader Mon 15-Aug-11 11:57:44

Proscrastinorgeneral- i think CSA will only assess maintenance from when the PWC applies and that is liability will start from so she cant apply for past period. I cant find it on their website though!

oldraver Mon 15-Aug-11 12:18:37

Yes CSA will only start from when the claim is made, and CSA have contacted the NRP.. It is only 'backdated' if the claim drags on and takes a while to be established, which it can even in straightforward cases, like where the NRP has applied themselves (like a male friend of mine who contacted the CSA)

OP if you do contact the CSA I would put use the CSA calculator and put this some aside each week

sleepevader Mon 15-Aug-11 12:25:46

Very good advice oldraver about setting money aside.

OP do you have them overnight?

Birdsgottafly Mon 15-Aug-11 12:41:04

You are within your rights to limit how much of your income goes towards the upkeep of your DP's DC's, but anything else is for him to decide and implement.

He is out of work so surely it is him who has the time to contact the CSA. She cannot work full time on the basis of him not working, umless he is going to stay unemployed.

You really don't need to keep track of whether your DP has his children more than his ex, if that is what he wants. You just need to sort out your own financial contribution. One of his DC's is approaching the teenage years, it is hard enough without having parents at loggerheads.

ProcrastinatorGeneral Mon 15-Aug-11 13:37:56

Good info about the CSA there. I honestly couldn't remember much, even though my ex and my case has only been going for four years. It got set up and just went from there. Easy. I'm lucky in that though, for which my ex and I are both thankful. We use them as it means we both have a recourse to somebody if there's a boob.

I think CSA is the fairest option for everybody involved here. It means that the amounts being paid are assessed at what can be afforded, and can be reassessed as and when needed.

passingtime Mon 15-Aug-11 16:37:45

sleepevader we frequently have them overnight. 3, 4, 5 nights a week depending on when his ex asks (usually at the drop of a hat)

we do also request to have them if we have got something nice to do or just want to see them. I have no issue whatsoever with the amount of time we have them, I just want things to be fair - I have my own ds to consider and this lack of routine is not ideal either.

AIBU to ask for set days/more notice and for the money issue to be resolved based upon how frequently we are looking after them?

sunshineandbooks Mon 15-Aug-11 17:11:47

Tricky. Based on everything you've said she sounds like she's taking advantage. However, the fact that it is YOU who is worrying about this and trying to come up with solutions is slightly worrying. Where is your DP and what is HE doing/saying about any of this?

Also, please be wary of saying things like: "We are saving her money during the holidays on childcare". It implies that you see childcare as solely her responsibility, whereas in reality she is just as much providing your DP with free childcare on the days the DC are with her. If you're having the DC roughly 50/50 then no one is saving any one any money on child care.

CSA rules about maintenance were changed to try to give the child the same standard of living with both parents, but that shouldn't be to the detriment of you and your own child. While you have to accept that your DP has responsibilities to his children that have to come before his responsibility to you, that doesn't mean you should sacrifice your own welfare and that of your own DSs in order to pay for his DC. Why is he being so passive about all this and letting it get to a stage where you are in such financial difficulties and stressing so much about it that you have resorted to posting a thread on MN in a bid to find a solution?

I think you need to earmark your own money and work out how much (if any) you are prepared to subsidise your DP's responsibilities. Any shortfall is his responsibility to either find or explain to his XP. I can appreciate you wanting to be a good partner and a nice person, but your primary responsibility is to yourself and your DC. Your DPs DC have two parents in addition to you to look out for their welfare.

Hope you get things sorted out.

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