CSA and informal arrangement(42 Posts)
hello. I've been separated from my ex for two and a half years, and divorced for a year and a half. during that time we have made informal arrangements regarding maintenance payments. The figures have been based on the csa calculations and have been paid on time with no problems.
now my ex has decided she would rather use the CSA. The CSA have been in touch and are sendin me paperwork.
I have no real issue with any of this, but should I continue making informal payments whilst the CSA sort everything out, or could I end up paying twice if I don't stop payments?
Work out what you think you'll have to pay and pay that. Provided its all going to your ex you shouldn't have to pay twice.
I've been paying by standing order, so I should have evidence of payments.
I haven't asked her why, but I think it's got something to do with me moving in with my new partner. She's been with her current partner for over a year, is pregnant, and should be looking forward to a happy future. Unfortunately she doesn't want to afford me the same privilege.
Why should her going to the CSA be such a problem unless you were paying under the odds before?
Collaborate - Thanks for your insightful comment. However I did state I don't have a problem with it.
The suggestion in your 8.40 post was that she'd be denying you a happy future by going to the CSA. She isn't of course.
In fact she's the one who might lose out as if she elects to have you pay the CSA it will take a couple of weeks before they pass the payments on to her.
Maybe someone has told her your new partners income will be calculated in what she will get. Which isnt true any more. It was up until about eight years ago. Now all that affects is your income and any future children you have. Even if you remarry.
OP you'd be as well stopping the informal payments u till you're assessed, otherwise they will sting you for arrears. Even if you have evidence of payment you'd have to fight tooth and mail to get arrears removed, and even then it's not certain
So the question is, should you stop contributing towards your children's upbringing because your ex wants things to be done on a formal basis so she knows where she stands in the future and isn't reliant on your goodwill?
Perhaps you should ask yourself, do you think that stopping payments now, (which you have both agreed to and which you have been making regularly) will make things run more smoothly or is it likely to inflame the situation?
You know the answer, but if you want to punish her for trying to protect herself and her children financially, knock yourself out. Otherwise, accept the situation and do all you can to sort it out amicably for the sake of your children.
Collaborate - My ex is under the impression, for an unknown reason, that using the CSA will somehow harm me. I am slightly miffed as I have always paid on time and at the same level or more as the CSA would suggest. Isn't it a waste of the service if the need isn't there? Isn't it casting aspersions on my character?
I don't want my ex to be in hardship by me not paying until the assessment is complete, but at the same time I don't want to pay twice.
DoingItForMyself - What a massively uninformed response! Obviously I don't know the answer, otherwise I wouldn't have asked!! Maybe you could post a question about how to deal with your aggression?
Only 1 month ago did I send a signed letter to her for the purposes of a mortgage approval outlining the maintenance payments I make. There is no reason for my ex to think I would stop payments, and there is no way I would stop them. Her motive is to punish me, when in fact financially it will make no difference to me, but if I have to pay hundreds or thousands of pounds in over payments that could have a very severe impact on my ability to pay bills, etc.
Hi, i can only give advice based on our experience but I would stop all informal payments now as it can be a nightmare getting the CSA to recognise those payments when they calculate your arrears from the date she made the claim, even if you have proof. You would be far better off banking what you think you should be paying and then doing a lump sum when they finalise your annual payment schedule.
The CSA really are crap at times so write everything down and always ask who you are speaking to and make a note of date/time and person.
This is exactly the sort of time wasting case that ties up CSA resources chasing reliable payers. The sort that most posters on mumsnet deny exist.
"Why do you think they will take hundreds or thousands in overpayments?"
The CSA are well known for doing this. My DH was stung for just under £2k when his ex denied he'd been making voluntary payments pending finalisation of the figures from the CSA. Yes, she lied to a government agency and they ignored the proof my DH had of the payments.
Its time wasting because the CSA has finite resources - instead of chasing the non payers, they instead focus on the easy cases, i.e. the voluntary payers. Its an easy way for them to get their internal stats to look better. Meanwhile a load of pwc's will be receiving nothing because the CSA resources are tied up elsewhere needlessly
"Why is it timewasting? The CSA provides a service, anyone is entitled to use it"
And everyone is wondering why they're going to start charging
I absolutely agree with allnewtaketwo having been in the same position. The advisor would only base the assessment on what the payments were from the date Ex claimed and refused to reassess deducting the payments made during that period. The most frustrating thing was that they wanted the entire arrears over 3 months payments even though we were paying twice.
dont pay her save the money - the CSA will date from the date of claim and trying to explain anything to them is a nightmare.
also we pay by Standing Order rather than DD - that way we control any changes they make.
save as in to hand over to CSA - not to save for yourself.
OP I can't help with the question on back payments etc but two things:
1. Whilst its annoying right now when you've been a reliable payer all along, try to go forward with good humour. My DH has an informal arrangement with his ex and in many ways I wish it had been formalised at some point. In some ways, it can make life easier and now that you both have new partners, either of you can just refer to the CSA agreement in case of any 'discussions'. A formal agreement could protect you as much as your ex.
2. If you stop payments for a while, how will your ex make up that gap in her income, even in the short term. If I was receiving a regular income and it suddenly stopped I'd struggle to cover expenses and its not really fair on her or your DC('s) to do that IMHO.
Also, it's not unusual for people to feel the need to protect themselves when a new partner comes on the scene. Despite being with my DH (then DP) for 3 yrs before we moved in together, when we did, his ex asked for all sorts of assurances on paper about financial stuff.
My DH did the same when his ex eventually got married too.
I agree with allnewtaketwo, that has been my experience as well but I don't think rodders should stop payments either I just don't understand why someone would choose to use them if there was an amicable agreement anyway
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