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...the CSA are completely useless?

(42 Posts)
Holly129 Mon 17-Jun-13 19:10:38

Hi All,

I am hoping some of you will tell me some success stories with the CSA, however I have had pretty much 0. In 3 and a half years I had one payment of £40 when I first claimed and since have had nothing. I've told them where dd's father lives, works, provided phone numbers. I've called the CSA (0845 number!) every month, and everytime I call it's either a different excuse or "you should receive something next month." How is he buying a house, new cars, brand new TVs etc, and avoiding the CSA for over 3 years! I asked today if they would consider taking it to court as now he has over £5,000 of debt towards me (calculating at their basic rate as he and his employer have refused to provide payslips) and they told me they would not consider taking it to court as he has an employer! Is there any other way to get what I'm owed? I feel like nothing is happening, I'm being fobbed off all the time, if there's such a massive back log why don't they hire more workers?

It seems like if a father wants to pay, he will pay, and surely you don't need the CSA for that. If a father doesn't want to pay, he can avoid the CSA forever. AIBU to think the CSA are completely useless?

Tooearlyintheday Tue 18-Jun-13 08:17:14

There is no impetus on the CSA to do a good job because maintenance does not save the gov't any money - it doesn't actually matter to them if children and rp's receive maintenance or not. I'd assume that at some stage the CSA will be done away with all together and it will go back to court ordered or voluntary agreements which will be even more difficult to enforce.

sashh Tue 18-Jun-13 09:27:24

Not saying to do this, it does depend on the person and the business.

A relative of mine was paid 1 day later every month, she realised what her ex was doing and that he was trying to miss a month.

When it came to the month she didn't get a payment she sent a fax to his office saying he was 30 days late with the maintenance of $X for his 2 children.

This was in Australia and he was paying the legal minimum although he had a good job. So everyone in the office knew he was paying the minimum and it was late.

He phoned her and gave her a telling off for embarrassing him in front of his work colleagues.

He never missed another payment.

I think the best scheme I heard of was in America, I don't know if it was ever implemented, but the plan was that if anyone stopped paying the equivalent of the CSA then all licences they held would be suspended.

So Driving licence, licence to practise medicine, licence for a gun etc.

I suppose here it would include TV licence. Obviously you need to give people a bit of time, 2 weeks perhaps. But if the CSA could cancel driving licences until a payment is made I bet a lot more payments would be made.

SusanneLinder Tue 18-Jun-13 10:30:02

Complain, complain, complain and then complain some more.Go to your MP also, and I badgered the CSA on a weekly basis, and asked them for explanations of why the DEO was taking so long, forgot to send it ......

I was one of those annoying little mosquitos that never went away, and eventually I got the 14 grand I was owed.

You need to be VERY persisant.I was never rude or obnoxious but was very assertive.

Log EVERY call, and who you spoke to, and what time you spoke to them and what they said, and follow it on the 28th I spoke to x and they said etc etc

Get the name of your case officer (which seemed to change weekly in my case-involved another complaint grin)

In my experience, it is those that shout the loudest that get results.

needaholidaynow Tue 18-Jun-13 10:50:51

Having someone's driving licence cancelled if they are a bus driver is going to be counterproductive because then their children really will receive zero because their parent will then be out of a job. Same goes with a licence to practice medicine; if they are a doctor then they will again be out of a job and again their children really will receive zero.

Never understood why this is actually a good idea.

Holly129 Tue 18-Jun-13 11:48:15

meddie You are so right! If you owe council tax or income tax they find you and make you pay up ASAP, so why aren't they applying the same tactics to absent parents who refuse to pay maintenance?

sleeplessbunny Tue 18-Jun-13 12:07:15

yy meddie

RedHelenB Tue 18-Jun-13 17:01:56

needaholiday - because the NRP WILL pay if they risk losing a well paid livliehood!

needaholidaynow Tue 18-Jun-13 17:54:12

But it sounds ridiculous. Surely there are other ways of making them pay without the end result ultimately meaning the child ends up with nothing indefinitely. Solves nothing.

racmun Tue 18-Jun-13 18:00:06

The CSA are appalling. My dh pays maintenance happily and regularly like he should but they are a nightmare to deal with.

I escalated an issue we had to the complaints team despite being told we'd go to the bottom of the queue etc if we did. we got decent service and the issue was resolved within 12 weeks and we were given courtesy phone calls and a ddi for the case handler.

I would definitely recommend you do that.

Dahlen Tue 18-Jun-13 18:02:42

Think about it this way needaholiday - if making sure one's own child is clothed and fed is not motivation enough for a man to pay for his child, chances are nothing short of the extremely punitive will make him face up to his responsibilities.

The child will only end up with nothing if the father still continues to refuse to pay. As he was already paying nothing, the child is not 'losing out' anyway.

IneedAyoniNickname Tue 18-Jun-13 18:03:16

Yanbu. CSA are shite. I've just been given a nil award as ex has no income. Or so he told them. When I told them that couldn't be possible as he must be funding his lifestyle somehow I was told that's not the CSAs concern.

I agree with the ppps

Dahlen Tue 18-Jun-13 18:03:27

It sends a very clear message about the unacceptability of non-payment, however - one which would hopefully become seeped into the national consciousness in the same way as drunk driving has become once it was made a criminal offence.

IneedAyoniNickname Tue 18-Jun-13 18:04:36

Sorry, agree with the pps whos said there need to be stricter rules about maintenance. The whole system is crap.

ThingummyBob Thu 20-Jun-13 09:33:41

Yanbu. CSA are shite. I've just been given a nil award as ex has no income. Or so he told them. When I told them that couldn't be possible as he must be funding his lifestyle somehow I was told that's not the CSAs concern

Ineed you need to read this CSA variations and Appeals

You can ask them to look more closely basically.


IneedAyoniNickname Thu 20-Jun-13 11:45:30

Thanks Thingummy they've told me if I can prove he has they can look into it. I will look at that link too.

mummytime Thu 20-Jun-13 12:04:10

If someone has a proper company then it will be registered at co meanies house, and usually shows up on a simple google search. Even better they have to register accounts etc.

However if they just work for themselves it can be harder to track down. However I don't see why CSA has a so much harder job of this than HMRC.

IneedAyoniNickname Thu 20-Jun-13 17:03:27

That's the trouble, I don't know if its a real registered company. He has a facebook page, and business cards bit not sure that means much!

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