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Ex failed to pay court ordered maintenance

(26 Posts)
dungandbother Sun 11-Jun-17 22:18:16

Be grateful for some straightforward advice
My ex husband has failed to pay his maintenance which is court ordered as part of divorce.

I wrote to the court who said get your divorce lawyer to advise you.

Except I can't afford the lawyer at all any more and more so without maintenance.

Surely I can go to court and represent myself?

Straight forward advice and legal words required to get s judge to kick his arse?

I believe his failure to pay is part and parcel of continued domestic abuse and bullying but I no longer talk to him at all and have blocked his phone as he is vile to me. Therefore I refuse to get into a conversation with him as to when will you be paying.


Collaborate Mon 12-Jun-17 07:28:30

This sets out the various methods of enforcement. Which you should use depends on what type of order you have and the debtors particular circumstances. The court cannot give you any advice.

dungandbother Thu 29-Jun-17 23:37:11

I'm replying in case anyone searches for this topic.
The court system is a let down in my opinion. Regardless that I spent £8k on a divorce to protect myself and my young children, the courts only response was to "Instruct a solicitor, I see you had one represent you in divorce". And they sent me an email with links that didn't even work to various government websites much like the one Collaborate linked. I'm sorry but they are utterly meaningless to normal folk.

When your maintenance hasn't been paid, paying a solicitor is last on the list after feeding and housing your children.
When you're working like a Trojan and can't get time off to see citizens advice, when the half hour window you have after work to make enquiring phone calls before 5.30 means your children have to listen along on the hands free.....

Thank you women's aid. Who told me to go to the court house and ask for the forms. There are four or more to choose from.
The best one is the one which you complete to ask the court to decide on your behalf.

It's called D50K.

It gives the judge the decision on how the court see fit to enforce the damn bit of fucking paper the divorce lawyers charged you £8k for.

Regardless, this month, my threat to complete form D50K induced my ex to pay.

Onto next month.


Good luck. Still love MN grin

RedHelenB Sat 01-Jul-17 08:02:10

Is he self employed or PAYE. Might be better to go through can or whatever it's called nowadays if the latter.

prh47bridge Sat 01-Jul-17 08:59:32

the courts only response was to "Instruct a solicitor, I see you had one represent you in divorce"

Court employees cannot give legal advice. They are not lawyers and cannot risk getting it wrong. They will always refer you to a solicitor if you need advice.

Traveller123 Sat 01-Jul-17 12:46:16

To OP. How long has the Court Order been in place? If less than a year then NRP should pay whatever was stated in the Order. If Order is over a year ago you can approach CMO/CMS to make a claim.

dungandbother Mon 02-Oct-17 20:15:40

Just updating.

Papers still in Court. No body (judge) has looked at the papers yet. So four months now no money.

We are seriously suffering now financially. No end in sight. Justice sucks.

Collaborate Mon 02-Oct-17 21:36:33

Judges don’t “look at papers”. You issue an application, it’s listed for a hearing, a judge tells you what hoops you need to jump through then you have a final hearing. That’s how the court system works. If you’ve filed a consent application that’s the only time a judge will “look at the papers”.

I don’t get the 4 months no maintenance. Didn’t your ex pay at the end of June? What did you issue in court, and when?

dungandbother Mon 02-Oct-17 21:54:55

Hi Collaborate and thanks for staying on my thread.
I sent an application for court to decide how to enforce payment of the court order.
3 months later they judge still hasn't got to my application. The order hasn't been enforced and my ex hasn't even been summonsed yet. He's moved so I have informed them of this.
I have a court number.

I have no maintenance.

dungandbother Mon 02-Oct-17 21:55:45

The court order was less than six months old when he first failed to pay.

SarahH12 Thu 05-Oct-17 16:55:46

Given that it's rapidly approaching 12 months I think your best bet is to go through the Child Maintenance Service. As long as he's PAYE then can do what's called an attachment of earnings which means the money gets taken out before it goes to him so there's no possible way of him wriggling out of paying.

dungandbother Thu 05-Oct-17 20:23:44

Well, he is for £11k of his earnings, taking the rest in dividends.

CMS won't do anything till 12 months.

We're stuck in limbo. It's the same sorry story thousands of mothers face.

1Wanda1 Wed 11-Oct-17 14:44:58

OP are you saying that 4 months after you issued the application, the court has not even listed a hearing? That is not right. Did you pay the application fee when you sent in the form D50K?

A hearing date should have been listed. At the first hearing, the Court gives directions for the things you need to do (for example, the Court would probably order your ex to give financial disclosure so that the Court could determine how to order him to pay) before the matter gets to a final hearing.

You should have received a Notice of Hearing telling you that the matter will be heard at X court on X date with a time estimate of 1 hour (or less, or more, as the case may be).

If you haven't, and you didn't pay the application issue fee, that may be why. If not, you should go to the court you sent it to, and ask a court clerk why your application has not been listed for a hearing, and what you need to do to get a listing.

Collaborate Wed 11-Oct-17 15:10:38

I agree with 1Wanda1. Check the court have taken your payment. If it hasn't been listed for a hearing after 3 months something has gone wrong.

AliceTown Wed 11-Oct-17 16:22:24

Definitely follow this up. I’ve had applications go missing for months on end before.

dungandbother Thu 12-Oct-17 19:24:05

I chased it twice and on the second time they sent the notice.

January 2nd. That will be six months after applying. It's shocking.

We are on our knees and I can't even think about Christmas it makes me feel sick.

I don't think they have cashed the cheque though. I will apply for help on court fees now.

I just feel so let down. He has spent four months thinking I'm bluffing and now he has a letter that says you need to come to court in January.

dungandbother Thu 12-Oct-17 19:28:48

All they sent him is a copy of my form I completed which states he owes me one month. It one month when I applied. It's now four. £2200 he owes me.

I'm so worried about this especially as I haven't gone into it with legal advice, I imply don't know what the proper outcome will be.

Can he just keep saying I haven't got the money and they say oh well then let's pass it to the CMS? I've not been sleeping. January is such a long way away. sad

WhoWants2Know Thu 12-Oct-17 19:37:29

I don't think he can just say that he doesn't have the money. The initial order will have been based on his financial declaration, and they will probably ask for similar information from him again.

It will eventually be sorted and he's going to end up paying a lot more than he would have if he had just got on with it.

1Wanda1 Fri 13-Oct-17 10:17:00

Usually what happens is that the Court will have sent your ex form EX140 (, which he is required to fill in and take to Court with him to his appointment. Form EX140 contains fairly detailed questions about the value of any assets he has, what he earns, how often he is paid, what essential outgoings he has (i.e. rent/mortgage) - basically his overall financial position. He has to attend before a court officer to go through this, and a record is taken. After he has answered these questions, the Court should send you a copy of the answers.

Enforcement is quite a straightforward process usually. If there is a court order in force requiring him to pay maintenance, then he should have paid it and the court will want to determine the best way to get him to pay it.

As to the fact that you only stated 1 month in the application but now more time has passed, don't worry. It is obvious that the arrears have continued to accrue and what you are asking for is an order that he must pay you the arrears which have accrued between the last date on which he paid, and the date of the order. If he says he can't afford it all in one go, the court has a variety of options open to it, for example an attachment of earnings order to take the money directly from his income.

If he cannot pay because he has lost his job, then he should have applied to vary the order on that basis. He may make that application now, but that will not change the fact that until the order is varied (if it is), his obligations under it remain in force and arrears have already accrued.

dungandbother Fri 13-Oct-17 20:41:38

Thank you 1wanda for answering. I am most reassured by your reply.

He moved a month ago. I don't know where because he thinks he's playing tit for tat as I didn't give him my new address when I moved (which is the advice I followed from Women's Aid and the Met)

I informed the court he had moved to an unknown address and gave them the estate agent details who had previously let to him as they should have a forwarding address. His business premises haven't changed and I told them this. Would the court do the leg work to issue his notice or not on that information? I'm now completely stressing that because he moved from the address I gave, he simply won't get the notice and therefore won't appear which would be my fault as the address was wrong.

If you have any insight then I would be so grateful.

anappleadaykeeps Mon 19-Mar-18 00:48:34

How are things now? How did the January hearing go?

I am about to embark on the D50k route (Ex deliberately underpaying for last 3 months, but refusing to answer any of my emails), but am nervous.

dungandbother Thu 22-Mar-18 20:29:16

Hi Apple

I've been quiet on MN for ages until morning about my ex today on Chat!

The process was shite. Utter bullshit and a complete failure. But within my circumstances (more later)

Attend court having requested a barrier screen for not wanting to see him. And then promptly dumped in a public waiting room with him for 3 hours before being called to court.

Hint. Get there early. Get a seat at the back of the waiting room. You don't want him looking at your head for hours.

Without a lawyer, we went last. The most expensive dressed lawyers went first. The youngest and scrappiest lawyers went last. Then us. Total bottom of the pile.

So in court. With no one to guide me on what to say, it muddled along with me outlining he hadn't paid.
I printed some emails and took them with me. The one where my ex moaned at me for moving away and therefore he wasn't paying me cause he had to pay petrol... well. The judge tore a strip off him.

Will post this then getting my laptop. Typingshot on my phone grin

dungandbother Thu 22-Mar-18 20:44:25

Back with typing skills.

So Ex gets roasted for not knowing how much he earns. The judge then adjourns to send Ex to fill out the form with all his earnings and outgoings. My ex guesstimates everything saying He'd need to ask his accountant.

We return to judge. Basically ex cries and says he is in debt and owed money so he can't give me my money.

There was no demand by the judge to see his accounts. No demand to see bank statements.
Judge explained he could seize assets from Ex if he had property. If he had income from an employer then I could get my money at source.
But my ex is self employed. with no assets.

I got no money.

The judge said I could come back to court if my ex's circumstances change and I want to persue the money.

My ex said he was going to apply to vary the court order because he couldn't afford it. He hasn't.

I have found out today that my ex has been using my old address and hasn't paid his tax bill.

I can still return to court. Every month that passes my ex owes me more and more. But the judge can't give it to me.

Court itself was scary but totally do-able. Make sure you take evidence. Emails etc. Print outs of texts.
Have a nice orderly file and actually give the judge Evidence. Bullet point your argument and carefully slowly pick through it.
If your ex owes you money on a court order, and he has property or a Paid employment, then you'll get your money.

If he is a self employed layabout being paid in cash and hiding it, then you won't get a penny. If he deliberately leaves his assets inside his business and runs his bank accounts in the red, you won't get a penny

I doubt you'd get a penny with the hottest lawyer available to you in those circumstances and it is an absolute travesty of our legal system that men continuously get away with not paying for their children.

And my ex is a Professional in the health profession. Highly educated, high earning. It makes me cynical, it makes me angry and it makes me hate men even more. (even though I have an absolute gem of a man now in my life to compensate) but even so!!

Holler if you want more hand holding

dungandbother Thu 22-Mar-18 20:52:10

And if traveller or Wanda are still about, do you have any solid advice on switching my claim to CMS? Can that even work on someone self employed with an accountant?
My court order and Divorce have passed a year now.

Mind you, if he owes HMRC money, I'm hardly likely to get any.

TJ2503 Fri 23-Mar-18 13:32:16

Hi @dungandbother

From my dealings with the court, HMRC and CMS your exh has a legal obligation to support his DC. Even if he owes money to HMRC the 2 things are separate so he should still pay you.

For background HMRC bankrupted my EXH and I was concerned I would not see the £7k+ he owes in un-paid maintenance. I was assured by the insolvency agency that the CMS debt could not go on his bankruptcy order (and therefore wiped in 12 months as he had no assets) therefore he still owes the money to me for CMS.

My EXH is a pro at playing the CMS system and routinely says he is self employed then switches to PAYE then back again etc to avoid paying. My understanding is even if he is self employed with an accountant you can still open a case. Give them all the information you have. They will have access to HMRC records so they can see his latest tax returns etc and if needed use them to estimate how much he should be paying. They have done that before with my EXH as he would not give payment figures.

Good luck

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