Mainentance and CSA problems(7 Posts)
I need some help addressing some problems, I have hit a dead end and do not know where to go from here!
I have 2DS's, 12 and 7, different fathers.
Ds1's Dad has never paid any maintenance since we split nine years ago. He does have Ds1 three nights a week and the casual agreement was he would buy everything Ds1 needed. This had worked quite well, but he is now refusing to buy clothes etc.
I have been split from Ds2's Dad for five years and he also pays nothing. Ds2 stays at his at the weekends, but he works as a builder cash in hand, and after a five year battle with the CSA, they are saying they can't take money from him as he claims he is un-employed.
I know I have made some terrible choices with these two, but after years of just trying to put it out of my mind and thinking as long as they have good relationships with their Dad's i should be happy, it is starting to really get me down.
I am a 3rd year student, and money is now really tight. Neither can do activities like swimming or clubs which I would like them to, I just feel like life is much more shit that it needs to be, and the pair of them seem to take great delight in going on about how much money they have and how I will never get any.
DS2's Dad : There is nothing the CSA can do. You're only other option is to report him to the tax office for fraud and hope it either a) makes him start putting his earnings through the books or b) he finds a PAYE job.
DS1's Dad : When you say he is now refusing to buy clothes, do you mean any clothes for the 3 days DS is with him? What does he wear when with him then? If you receive the child benefit, you can apply for CSA from DS1's Dad. It might not be a great deal as he will have a reduction for the 3 nights a week. But then he doesn't have to pay over and above the CSA amount so it might actually put your son in a worse position.
Have you looked at your own budget? Moneysavingexpert website is good.
record any convo's about work and money...follow and take photos of him at work if you can, find out who he is working with too (if it's a legit business then they are committing a crime too if not employing people through their books, etc...
Then you discuss that you have all this evidence and will use it if need be...that you want to discuss a fair maintenance agreement or you will be forced to take matters into your own hands.....send the evidence to csa...they will investigate fraudulent declarations of unemployment, etc...and so will the benefits people.
There comes a time when you are backed into a corner by the continual denial over parental responsibilities that you have to take action for your DC's sakes....you have a lot of years ahead of your DC's still being dependent on their parents...
With the clothes issue, I just used to buy what he needed and he would refund me what I had spent.
With the working issue, I have repeatedly given details to CSA, benefit fraud people and tax office, no one seems in the slightest bit interested!! I compiled a massive book of proof a couple of years ago, but nothing came of it, so I went back to pretending everything was fine.
I am just so angry and resentful, sometimes I can't sleep just getting myself worked up, how to I become at peace with it all?
Time to get tough I think, this isn't fair on you. I'd advocate a 'would love to let you see your child but she has to go and work down a mine because we're too poor' approach. Churlish but might buck them into action.
Or name and shame? Threaten to call the local paper, they love a good benefit cheat/deadbeat dad story.
With DS1 - is he getting old enough, do you think, to start buying his own clothes? I've just started sending my DS (12) out with some money to pick up stuff he needs. If he can do that, then you could see if he could ask his dad directly for some money to go and buy what he needs. It's a tough age 12 - my DS has an entire new wardrobe from 6 months ago because he's growing so fast, and clothes and shoes are starting to get a lot more expensive. But if you can cut yourself out the loop and see if he can appeal direct to his dad, that might help?
Less easy with DS2, though you could ask his dad if he can could buy him, say, shoes, or sports kit, or something he could take him shopping for when he has him. Always harder for them to say no to spending money direclty on their DCs than to refuse to hand it over to you to spend.
Also with clubs - worth checkign out different options - some that are run by the council or voluntary sector (eg swimming, cubs/scouts) can be very cheap or even free. After school clubs are usually free too. It's just the private ones that cost lots.
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