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AIBU that I don’t think school uniform come soon under maintenance ?

(55 Posts)
Jewelledhen Tue 16-Jul-19 08:38:18

Mainly just looking for other views as it’s the first time I’m buying ( eeeeeeek)

DS starts school in September
Me and his dad split when he was 6 months- all amicable.
He pays me £150 p/m maintenance- we sorted this ourselves 4 years ago- I’m pretty sure if I went through child maintence I’d get more now

DS goes to dads 2 weekends a month, and every Monday for tea.
AIBU asking for help towards uniform? Or would you say this falls under everyday costs and should be covered by maintenance ?

Jewelledhen Tue 16-Jul-19 08:39:29

Also I’m very clearly still half asleep this morning as my title doesn’t make sense!!
** AIBU that I don’t think school uniform comes under maintenance

MyOpinionIsValid Tue 16-Jul-19 08:39:45

If it is amicable why cant you ask him what he thinks ?

wendz86 Tue 16-Jul-19 08:39:54

In theory they don’t need to give you more for it but it’s a nice thing to do . My ex pays half towards school shoes etc .

Jewelledhen Tue 16-Jul-19 08:40:49

Well it’s amicable to a point - we barely speak and I have a habit of being abit soft. If I asked and he instantly said no I’d probably just take it. But I wanted other views really to see if I’m being cheeky and should ask!

wendz86 Tue 16-Jul-19 08:42:13

I would check how much he would be paying if you went through child maintenance . If it’s more than you get then totally not unreasonable to ask . £150 a month isn’t a lot .

AnAC12UCOinanOCG Tue 16-Jul-19 08:42:19

£150 is ridiculously low. Definitely ask him.

MyOpinionIsValid Tue 16-Jul-19 08:42:46

Google tells me : Child maintenance is financial support towards your child's everyday living costs when you've separated from the other parent

Personally I would say school is an every day occurrence. Others would disagree.

MyOpinionIsValid Tue 16-Jul-19 08:43:37

£150 is ridiculously low. Definitely ask him.

Depends what he earns doesnt it?

chzarind Tue 16-Jul-19 08:48:09

I think you have 2 issues here.

Firstly, maintenance is to support your child's living so o do think uniform etc comes into that.

Secondly, and more importantly, if you feel you could be getting more then go for more: it's for your DC.

MammaMia19 Tue 16-Jul-19 08:48:27

Ask him and if he says no then ask him to take him and buy the shoes and pe kit himself. My ex pays more than that monthly but we split big costs like parties, presents, uniform, swim lessons.

MammaMia19 Tue 16-Jul-19 08:49:19

When I say take him I mean he takes his son to get the shoes

HennyPennyHorror Tue 16-Jul-19 08:51:13

If you think he'd be assessed as having to pay more then you need to discuss this with him.

Let him know that you feel you need more.

WillLokireturn Tue 16-Jul-19 08:52:46

£150 a month is £35 week. That'll barely cover his food for the week, leaving you what £10 to put towards normal clothes shoes, haircuts, packed lunches daily, school trips, books, toys, petrol driving him places, childcare /childcare in holidays, nothing towards roof over his head, heating etc. He lives with you and your work has to fit around school hours or childcare.

So ,you are certainly not unreasonable to ask him to split costs of school uniform and school trips!

I'd love it if my children were a bargain at £35 a week! That wouldn't even cover childcare for youngest or what the eldest eats in a week or books he needs!

As other PP has said might be worth working out how much CMS he should pay and revisiting it for your sake, even if you didn't go through them and agree it mutually.

JacquesHammer Tue 16-Jul-19 08:58:26

If he was a decent bloke he would pay half of uniform costs.

Unfortunately it’s perfectly legal for him NOT to be a decent bloke.

If you would get more maintenance through CMS, do it.

ZillaPilla Tue 16-Jul-19 09:06:52

I think if maintenance is something you've worked out between you rather than through CMS then it should be reviewed periodically.
Starting school would be a good time to do that.

Just talk to him. Apart from shoes I'd say that having a child in school uniform reduces overall clothing costs over the course of a year (unless it's a private school with fancy requirements).

If you can avoid CMS I would, they are an absolute ball ache.

TeaAndChocolateBiscuits Tue 16-Jul-19 09:07:53

I wouldn't ask... I would text him and say... As you know DS is due to start school in September, his uniform will cost £100,so that's £50 each. Would you rather give me the cash, or purchase some items yourself?

Pinktinker Tue 16-Jul-19 09:08:43

I get £200 a month for three DC who never stay overnight. He’s never paid me extra towards uniform, I did ask the first year and he said ‘that’s what maintenance is for’. Their school uniform costs £300 each year. He’s a dickhead.

They technically don’t have to pay any extra but it is a nice thing to do. You can always ask.

PookieDo Tue 16-Jul-19 09:11:23

I think when it is a relatively small amount of crap maintenance like this - I also get £30 per week for each child it is not grabby to ask for half the cost of trips and uniform. My deal with ex is that I would not chase him for a larger amount per week if he goes half on these costs with me when they are needed.

I just simply present him with a list with all the costs and either he can give me the money or go buy the things himself. With secondary school he bought all the PE kits, I bought the uniform

cocomelon23 Tue 16-Jul-19 09:14:29

My thought is that its an every day cost so is included in maintenance.

Fluffybread Tue 16-Jul-19 09:16:53

Staying over 1-2 times per week with a salary of £18,000 per year works out at £35 per week. If you know or suspect he's on more than that I suggest you either ask for more money or go through the child maintenance service.

FuriousVexation Tue 16-Jul-19 09:33:50

You can certainly ask. I'd approach it as "going halves since he's growing so quick at the moment" rather than making demands.

My son's birth mum never gave us a fucking penny for school wear. Used to buy him a packet of 5 cheap socks from Primark for every birthday and Xmas.

Lovemusic33 Tue 16-Jul-19 09:37:18

My ex pays £150pm for 2 kids sad ,when I need help with anything I remind him that I could go to CSA and get them to see how much he should be paying. My ex doesn’t earn a fortune so I do understand that he needs to be able to survive which is why we agreed to this amount but if I’m struggling he will try his best to help out with things like school shoes.

School uniform doesn’t have to cost a fortune, especially for primary school, the shoes are the most expensive so maybe ask him to pay for shoes and you pay for the rest which would work out around 50/50?

notapizzaeater Tue 16-Jul-19 09:38:49

You can ask him, does he feel £150 is enough ? Have you had an inflation rise ?

bridgetreilly Tue 16-Jul-19 09:40:19

I would calculate how much you will be spending on school uniform, especially at the start. As a one off cost, it can be quite a lot, and I think it's reasonable to ask if he would contribute to that. As an ongoing thing, replacing outgrown/worn out items, I think it really comes in normal maintenance.

SoupDragon Tue 16-Jul-19 10:01:28

I've always paid for uniform out of maintenance. However, I had a decent amount of it so there was more than enough. I think in a low income situation it's acceptable to ask for a one off extra contribution.

VenusTiger Tue 16-Jul-19 10:01:54

Imo he will have to split all school costs from now on with you 50:50 you’re not buying one uniform OP.... there’s wellies, coats, trainers, pe bag, school trips, Mother’s Day/Father’s Day gifts, summer and Christmas Fayre offerings, milk continuation after certain age, lunch money after certain age.

If I were you, I’d agree a 50:50 cost as and when all the above arises.

MonkeyTrap Tue 16-Jul-19 10:05:25

I can see why many people struggle to co-parent amicably reading this post.

It’s not UR OP. Ask him.

Lilymossflower Tue 16-Jul-19 10:05:44

Not unreasonable.

Yeah he should pay for uniform and up the monthly allowance too !!

SolitudeAtAltitude Tue 16-Jul-19 10:08:14

ask him.

The "amicable" bit about your relationship is you

have the allowance reviewed

Waveysnail Tue 16-Jul-19 10:26:35

Price up the uniform and him for half. Or my friends ex buys school shoes, coat and bag while she buys the rest of the uniform.

Farahilda Tue 16-Jul-19 10:27:55

There will be quite a lot of random costs associated with school, not just uniform.

Maintenance shouid never be one figure, settled on when DC is a toddler, and never revised since then

I think it might be worth re-assessing maintenance level now, and going to CMS if he will not agree to pay their level (which is the minimum, and the level at which the government will at least try to enforce, not some desirable or target figure)

kateandme Tue 16-Jul-19 10:28:12

could you organise a proper converation about your actually talking with a needed topic.this is important so needed.
then write down bullet points of what you need to say(so he cant just disagree and your let it happen) what your thinking,what your dc needs and so therefore the costing increase etc and what you can both add to the pot for this.

kateandme Tue 16-Jul-19 10:31:56

plus you need to be able to discuss these things so getting it started now will help.becasue your dc is growing up so costs will change at certain trips.educational costs uniform,trips,new friends meet ups tech.they willstart grwoing faster so shoes and clothes o the increase or larger turn over and eventually uni,cars etc.itd be good if you could start these talks early.

BertieBotts Tue 16-Jul-19 10:35:49

If you realistically calculated it all you could add it all up and see that uniform is an extra.

Difference between current rent/mortgage and average cost of a place with X number fewer bedrooms/no garden/not near schools (or whatever considerations you jointly or independently made when choosing current house with children in mind). If he has done this too perhaps disregard.

Estimated proportion of weekly/monthly grocery cost, electricity, water, other utilities, TV, internet.

Estimated cost of ordinary clothing (including shoes) per year/half year/month.

Cost of any subscriptions, memberships, extra classes.

School costs - uniform, stationery, bags, sports kit, transport, trips, school dinners, PTA fundraisrers.

Childcare/after school club costs.

Estimated proportion of car costs/cost of child's public transport tickets

Cost of large one off purchases e.g. bed, car seat, safety gates, musical instrument, sports equipment, birthday parties. Unless equivalent bought for own home.

Less child benefit or any child tax credits etc.

Might be depressing to calculate this way but would at least give you an idea of realistic/fair costs.

CatG85 Tue 16-Jul-19 10:43:08

My DH pays £165 for two children and that's through maintenance and also had them every other weekend and a night or two during the week for dinner, so that's not a bad deal you have BUT DH does also pay towards things like dance school, swimming, school trips etc and I'm pretty sure gives some contribution to uniform but not half.

Pinktinker Tue 16-Jul-19 10:49:12

All you can do is ask and see what he comes back with.

When I asked my exH for a contribution he said I should buy cheaper uniform like his GF does for her DC... I said it was false economy, I’d happily buy cheap polo shirts but saw no point buying cheap shoes that would need replacing after a couple of months. He said it was my own fault then for insisting on expensive shoes hmm.

Shelby2010 Tue 16-Jul-19 10:55:05

Ask him to contribute £50 to school uniform, shoes etc If he says that’s what maintenance is for then tell him that the payments need reviewing in line with CMS minimum.

Starlight456 Tue 16-Jul-19 10:59:56

legally he doesn't need to pay additional..

You could say its been 4 years , can we review maintenance or maybe pay half of uniform costs.

Purpletigers Tue 16-Jul-19 11:07:51

Depends on how much he earns? Does he have a mortgage to pay ? If you claim the cb and receive tax credits he may assume the uniform should be paid from those .

GabsAlot Tue 16-Jul-19 11:12:54

Do you know how much he earns so you can check out how much the cms would say he has to pay afaik its 15% for one child

GabsAlot Tue 16-Jul-19 11:15:22

starlight they have made up their own calculation so it could be wrong

tisonlymeagain Tue 16-Jul-19 11:17:19

I receive child maintenance, I think uniform should come out of that. I don't ask my ex-DH to contribute to anything other than residential school trips.

MonkeyTrap Tue 16-Jul-19 11:28:01


There’s a valid argument on both sides there..

herculepoirot2 Tue 16-Jul-19 11:40:22

Ask him, and if he says no go to the CMS, which you should probably have done to begin with.

supersop60 Tue 16-Jul-19 11:56:05

What Bertiebotts said.
It's not just the uniform - it's all the other expenses that come with going to school that you never had before.
This is a new (extra) cost that you should be sharing.
It's time to review the payments OP.

stucknoue Tue 16-Jul-19 12:11:59

I suggest you say to him that now school is starting it's a good time to review maintenance, I assume it's been the same for 4 years! 50% of the initial costs and 50% of any trips is fair as they are not ongoing costs. Do check first what cms would award assuming you know his salary

PerfectlyNormalThankYou Tue 16-Jul-19 12:29:50

I ask every year for help towards extras. I get £90 a week for two children, he has them overnight once a week but that’s it. He doesn’t drive so I have to do all the running around and paying for petrol.

I ask for help towards uniform every year as they need new stuff due to growth every year. I also ask for help towards dance exams/uniforms if I’m struggling at the time.

AnneLovesGilbert Tue 16-Jul-19 12:34:50

Check what he should be paying through CMS.

AnAC12UCOinanOCG Tue 16-Jul-19 13:29:58

Depends what he earns doesnt it?
No. It's ridiculously low.

Chapwithwings Tue 16-Jul-19 13:46:19

For those of you saying £150pm is low.... my partner gets £98 a month from her ex husband for their son and that's what was decided by CMS. He does f* all for his kids, regularly goes out for the whole day when they come to stay at weekends and is basically a deadbeat in every single way. On the other hand, I contribute almost £1000 per month to support my 2 children and always try to ensure that all childcare decisions we make are fair and equitable. Bizarrely this leads to more conflict at home because I am "being too nice" to my ex-wife. Can't win. Sorry, rant over :-)

PookieDo Tue 16-Jul-19 14:29:35

It does depend on earnings

My ex earns more than me, probably with overtime he can take home £40k pa. He pays me £60pw for 2 DC and has done for 10 years. He’s just bought a 4 bed house has 2 cars (one new) and goes abroad every year. He has only 1 DC for 1 night per week.

When I asked for CMS review he went to town on me saying he would just drop his hours to spite me etc etc, so we came to the agreement that all other expenses are split in half. All trips all uniform etc. I could have gone to CMS and ended up with much less and it would have been horrible for my DC too, so for the sake of piece he has got his own way and it’s him who has to reconcile his stingy ways with himself (1 child won’t even visit him) and it’s been really hard but sometimes it is not always worth trying to force something to happen IMO. The non resident parent should obviously want to pay, and pay fairly but this doesn’t always happen

BigRedLondonBus Tue 16-Jul-19 15:08:45

I will be getting £30 a month for 4 children as of the end of the month as ex has started claiming benefits (up until now it’s been nothing at all) aS far as I’m aware maintenance is to cover school uniform.

WhoKnewBeefStew Tue 16-Jul-19 15:13:56

As him but put a price in there so do your homework.

Or another alternative is, if he'd rather, get him to buy the uniform. My friend whenever asked by his ex if he could contribute would always agree, but rather than handing over cash, he prefers to go out and buy the item (his ex isn't the most reasonable, he pays well over cms recommendations)

ZillaPilla Tue 16-Jul-19 15:49:56

I'm still fighting for my £75 a month from ex. Luckily I have a well paid professional job, eh?

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