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How much does his ex really get?

(505 Posts)
WaspFactory Wed 09-Jan-13 11:11:34

How much money does a single parent get in benefits? I ask because my partner is paying his ex over the odds in maintenance because he thinks she is getting next to nothing. However, a friend of mine says his ex gets more money than him due to the amount of benefit she receives.

Can anyone tell me how much (roughly) per month it's possible to get as a single SAHM with one child? Bearing in mind that she is living in their old house with a mortgage on it?

oliandjoesmum Tue 15-Jan-13 09:29:37

I'm sorry if people disagree but I think it should. I don't get any benefits, including child benefit from this month, but if I was getting the same amount as my husband earns im maintenance I would get CTC and CB. Why would that be fair? I actually have a friend who gets £4200 a month in maintenance but then still gets CTC of nearly £1000 a month and over £200 in child benefit on top of that. Not an urban myth, absolutely true. Why is that fair, when my husband earns less than that but we get nothing from the state even though we also have 4 children. She isn't doing anything wrong, she is claiming what she is entitled to legally, but I can't be persuaded that not taking maintenance in to consideration in benefits calculations is fair,those who got nothing/ very little/ irregular maintenance would still get the benefits, but those that got perfectly reasonable amounts would get less benfits. It happens that way if you are a single mother working for her living, why should it be different with maintenance?

Snorbs Tue 15-Jan-13 10:00:46

They did used to include child maintenance in benefits calculations. This was part of CSAv1 I believe.

It was discovered that many payers of child maintenance were appallingly unreliable about paying. So the recipient of the maintenance would have to keep changing their benefits claims to keep track of the child maintenance as it came in in dribs and drabs.

It turned out that the administrative cost of constantly changing the benefit claims ended up costing a huge amount. In fact, it cost more more than the additional benefits that would need to be paid out by simply ignoring child maintenance in the first place.

Finally, while I don't doubt there are some instances such as your friend who receives thousands in reliable child maintenance, such arrangements are relatively rare. According to Gingerbread, the average CSA payment is £33.50 a week. Or £22.50 if you include the cases where there is an assessment of zero (such as when the NRP claims to have no income). Not many single parents are coining it in like your friend.

oliandjoesmum Tue 15-Jan-13 10:19:59

I know, I am sure 95% of people get very very little, and I'm sure the current system is this way to ensure fairness for the majority who get very little or irregular payments. May be a half way ground where you only have to declare maintenance payments over a certain threashold would be better, in the same way you only have to consider worrying about CB removal over 50,000. I do understand that no benefits system is ever 100% fair, and that there will always be anomalies.

Snorbs Tue 15-Jan-13 10:38:08

You miss my point. The current system is not about ensuring fairness. It's about balancing the cost of running a means-tested benefit system that tries to take account of unreliable maintenance payments versus the cost of potentially superfluous benefits being paid if they ignore maintenance entirely. It's simply cheaper for the government to do the latter than the former.

CheeseandPickledOnion Tue 15-Jan-13 16:00:51

Just to answer those who addressed me.

Her drinking has nothing to do with maintenance. But when she's constantly bleeting about how skint she is, I'd rather see her putting her money to better uses than go out on the piss. Yes, it's her choice, her money. But don't come crying to us.... I'm afraid any decent adult who is moaning about skintness will put basics before booze.

Fortunately DSS is (to our knowledge) at his GP's when the party happens. He arrives back at her house in the am to be picked up by DH. So he isn't present for all the drunken antics, but sees the aftermath.

Believe me, if we thought there was any danger we'd be in court.

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