Specific Issue order for payment of school fees?(26 Posts)
Does any one have experience of applying for one of these so that an ec husband contributes their share towards independent school fees when the ex husband refuses to support child in this type of education despite being a high earner with lots of equity in a £500,000 home?
It is really difficult to obtain one unless it is by consent as the court or CSA will assess the level of maintenance for the child and extras such as school fees are considered just that extras or lifestyle choices and thus won't necessarily order payment over and above maintenance. Everyone I know who has a court order for school fees has it by consent and usually it is the first to be decreased or go if the payer suffers a decrease in income.
You don't want a specific issue order. You want a maintenance order. Whilst the courts cannot generally make child maintenance orders these days they can do so in a number of circumstances one of which is to cover the cost of education. Whether or not you will get an order depends on factors such as whether or not your child was privately educated or was expected to be privately educated at the time you split, the cost and so on.
no, not expected when we split 11 yrs ago.
Ds moved to private ed on a bursary 4 yrs ago. Now, due to move to senior school, problems obtaining suffient bursary. Ex has ability to pay but refusing to do so.
It's really tricky to get. You have to show that it's not in ds's best interests to be moved, but even then it's not easy.
The problem you have is that your dd didn't start in private education until after you and your husband were separated. He could argue that he never desired for her her to have a private education and therefore shouldn't be forced to fund it.
Did he agree to private education? Do you discuss fees with him when you embarked on private education?
Obviously it would be nice if he agreed to pay the fees as private education is what (I presume) your DD wants, but he shouldn't be forced to pay if he is against private education.
Did you discuss the move with your ex husband? It shouldn't matter that he has the ability to pay, if he didn't agree to private education initially. If you get maintenance from him that should cover education.
Is he generous to your DD in other ways eg take her on nice holidays etc?
He can't be forced to pay something he didn't agree to, even if he can afford it.
You need to apply for a financial provision for school expenses . I went for it and got it but it's only for expenses not fees as it was my choice to send my DS to private school . The amount I got on top of my CSA payment is quite modest £1800 pa but every little helps plus it's til he leaves education. For me it was never about the money but the fact daddy had to accept he should be contributing more . If you need any info DM me
I am the higher earner (by 10x his) . Our consent order, sealed court financial order says whoever the 5 children live with I pay the school fees and university costs. So as someone said above this was something discussed when we parted and is in the court order.
If it had not been I would certainly still have paid but it would have been harder for their father to get that kind of order later.
Could you not take on a second job to earn enough to pay the fees? Lots of single mothers pay school fees themselves.
Whenever ExH finally signs our consent order it will say that I am responsible for the school fees as long as I deem it appropriate for DC to be at independent schools.
As others have said DC was already at an independent school before we split and I am very keen for her to have continuity as so much of her life has been turned upside down.
We certainly did not contemplate £9k a year universities fees for the twins when we divorced, just the £1k of the oldest who was then about to leave for university, not that I mind having paid even though it's very unfair when as the resident parent you pay your ex, you work full time, you keep all the children, he pays nothing , you paid him AND he chooses never to see or help with the children or pay for anything. Not a very fair deal for higher earners in the UK. Low earnings housewives obviously have chosen the easier path in that sense.
Mentioning the equity in his home is very daily mail, why should it have a baring on if he should pay for a private education that you have decided that your children need?
Sorry boney, didn't intend it that way. He took everything when we divorced, so I suppose I mentioned it because he has so much more money than we do. Thanks for the advice. I pay the fees at the moment, but senior level is much higher, we have good state schools so will probably return to the state sector.
inthename you've had the experience that private may not necessarily deliver added academic value worth the fees. A move back to good state gives you the option of adding in extras that you and your DS choose and will best fit him rather than the school.
I would like to hear from anyone who has the same issues as myself.
The court consent order states the ex is responsible for paying 'school related reasonable extras'. The ex. will not disclose to me what he considers as responsible extra therefore avoids paying.
My Solicitor and Barrister haven't been helpful with this at all.
Since our divorce in 201 I have had to pay for uniform, meals, school transport, stationary, extra tuition and clubs, trips and so on.
Has anyone gone back to court for clarification regarding this?
I would appreciate your experience or advise.
As regards reasonable expenses Antonia I would say uniform, transport, stationery are included as compulsory, meals if they have to have the school meals but not if they can take in packed lunches. Extra tuition(??), clubs and trips are optional so not reasonable expenses.
Thanks for your response.
This is great news! I in the process of going back to court to challenge this.
May I ask, are you in the legal field or had experienced a similar issue?
I am a solicitor but don't practice family law but helped a friend get a similar order.
Also are you already getting school fees paid at a private school and the order also mentions extra on top because I think extras in a practice school context may mean something different than extras if you are at a state school.
My two teens were in independent schools from nursery until this September. The ex is a known wealthy business man.
Court Consent Order states he pays for school fees and 'reasonable school related extras'. He refuses to respond as to what he considers reasonable - thus forcing me to pay for everything.
I have a similar query related to private school fees. My husband pays maintenance of £1100 per month for his son (1st marriage), in addition he pays for his private education so almost £2,500 per month in total. We have 2 children of our own (3&5) who will both be state educated. Unfortunately my husband and I are splitting up but he is unable to move out as he simply can’t afford to. He says we will need to sell the house which would mean my girls and I would go to rented accommodation as I gave up work when children were born. My question is, would his court order for school costs be reviewed and removed in light of his significant change I.e a further 2 child maintenance payments plus spousal maintenance? I struggle to see how he pays so much for one child and nowhere near the amount for our 2 plus putting 2 children in the position to have to move home and most likely school so we find somewhere to live whilst all the time he pays for private school as well as maintenance for his first child. Am I being unreasonable 😔
Your ex's finance would need to be re-addressed completely now he is faced with another divorce. You will both need to complete E1 or E2 a financial declaration requirement for the courts. The courts will decide and work-out child maintenance for each child he has. You may be entitled to personal maintenance and the house (depending on what's owed on the mortgage). Your ability to work again will also matter.
Mediation may also work for both of you as long as you both know what your financial requirements are and can reach an agreement. This method is also much cheaper than having to go to court. Otherwise you should take legal advise from a Divorce Solicitor.
Best of luck.
Thank you so much for your reply. It’s all very unknown to me! My husbands ex wife is quite vicious and very much after all she can get money wise and Ive no doubt will fight like crazy to keep the private school payments so although my husband and I agree what we need to do financially this would only become possible if the payments made to his first child were to reduce in line with the child maintenance only. I’m guessing solicitors will be required for that part regardless. If we go to mediation would they recommend we go in this direction and challenge those payments which will enable our family to move forward with the separation and as little disruption to our children as possible (as in remain in the family home, stay in school etc?). Thank you again x
You may want to think about how you present your case in mediation. It sounds as if you're expecting your husband's first child to be made to move schools so your children (one of whom is a preschooler) don't have to. The most equitable solution may mean change for all 3 children.
How old is the first child? Might his private school offer a bursary to fund him until the next stage of his education is complete? Would they consider a charge on the family home in lieu of immediate fees? I think you may have more options than you realise.
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