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The blame is always put on us

(91 Posts)
Flixy102 Mon 01-Feb-16 09:31:02

Just want to see if DH and I are way off the mark here or not.

My DSD (18 this month) passed her driving test a few months back and was put onto the insurance of her mums car (her mums choice to do so). As is to be expected with a newly qualified driver, the premium was expensive so she was added until the policy was due for renewal.

DH got a text from DSDs mum yesterday, saying that her car insurance was now due for renewal and it is going to cost just over £1000 for the year (with DSD added). As it is so expensive, she wanted DH to contribute half. DH refused on the basis that a) we just don't have that money spare and b) as it is her car insurance and her choice to continue to have DSD as an additional driver, if she can't afford the premium, then DSD can't continue to be on the policy.

DSDs mum replied saying ok, she would tell DSD that she couldn't be on the insurance anymore, as her dad didn't want to pay half. DH is upset that he's being blamed for this and will now have to try to explain to DSD why he's not paying.

Should we be contributing something? I really don't know what's fair as DH doesn't want DSD missing out on having the freedom of the car and getting more experience on the road, but at the same time, we don't have any spare money and certainly not £500. DH already pays maintenance monthly through a private arrangement if that makes any difference.

Sorry that was long!!

YakTriangle Mon 01-Feb-16 09:41:58

It would be good if he could contribute to it, but if you just don't have the money to be able to, it's a moot point. Her mother is being very unfair to say her father 'won't' contribute if the truth is that he can't.

Readysteadyknit Mon 01-Feb-16 09:43:17

FWIW my ex pays half the DC's car insurance on top of maintenance. He can afford it however and we live rurally so having access to a car is not really a luxury. If you really can't afford to pay it, your DSD is old enough to understand - could she get a PT job to contribute? Also have you looked around at the cost of insurance yourself - we pay less with a black box fitted.

Petal02 Mon 01-Feb-16 09:43:45

You can't give money that you don't have, irrespective of whether a child has separated parents or not, and I'm sure lots of 'together' families can't afford sky-high insurance premiums.

MilkTwoSugarsThanks Mon 01-Feb-16 09:44:04

Ask DSD's mum to contribute half towards adding DSD to your DH's policy?

Flixy102 Mon 01-Feb-16 09:50:16

DH has been encouraging DSD to look for a PT job once she finishes her a levels. She lives within walking distance of school/town/bus stops/train station so it's more of a luxury tbh.

MeridianB Mon 01-Feb-16 09:55:33


When I passed my test I didn't expect anyone to pay for a car or for my insurance so I had to wait until I could afford my own.

If DSD is 18 then she can surely find part time employment to fund the £500 needed? After all, she is getting free use of a car otherwise (apart from petrol?) unless her mum expects her (or your DH) to pay towards MOT, tax and servicing? And half the insurance excess if she has a bump?

Just say no and I wouldn't say anything to DSD unless she asks. Surely she is old enough to realise that people don't have endless disposable income?

MeridianB Mon 01-Feb-16 10:00:18

Also, even if he did have the money, it would half of the additional portion of the premium that applies to DSD, not half of the whole premium, otherwise he's funding his ex's insurance, too.

So if ex usually pays £300 and it's now £1,000 with DSD then your DH would pay half of £700, so £350.

HesNotAMessiah Mon 01-Feb-16 10:00:41

Insurance is eye watering isn't it.

We've just got to the position where we'll pay for the cost while DSD is a learner but if she feels she needs or wants to use the car after that she's going to have to pay towards the cost.

Like you say it's a round £1000 regardless for a new driver.

DSD works part time tho, so it'll be up to her to decide where she wants to spend her money. At the moment she's not got a great grip on her finances.

When my son had passed my ex put him on their policy just for the few weeks of the holidays. It wasn't cheap but nowhere near the full whack.

And he didn't need a car during term time at school or uni.

We were advised by a broker when he had just passed to wait until he'd passed 19 and been driving for a year.

PrettyBrightFireflies Mon 01-Feb-16 10:02:36

Please don't feel guilty. So many people seem to think that co-parenting consists of one parent deciding what the DC needs and the other parent paying half. That's just not the case.

Had your DSD parents discussed this as she was growing up, then they could have planned how they were going to cover these costs.
As it stands, her mum has raised her expectations by committing to something on behalf of your DH.
Your DSD is old enough to understand that - all be it she will be disappointed. If she strops or resents her dad for a situation her mum created, then there are bigger problems than the car insurance, I'm afraid.

swingofthings Mon 01-Feb-16 10:09:28

DSDs mum replied saying ok, she would tell DSD that she couldn't be on the insurance anymore, as her dad didn't want to pay half. DH is upset that he's being blamed for this and will now have to try to explain to DSD why he's not paying.
Why is he upset when she would just state facts? I don't see how this constitute blaming him. He indeed doesn't want to pay half, end of. Now he may have very reasons for not being able to contribute which he can explain to his daughter. She is 18, not 8. What did he expect? Mum to lie to say that it is her who can't afford it?

Flixy102 Mon 01-Feb-16 10:16:00

But she can't afford it, it's her car insurance, her choice to continue to have DSD on the policy and DH wasn't consulted that he would even be asked to contribute before she checked the prices and told DSD she would be back on the policy.

PrettyBrightFireflies Mon 01-Feb-16 10:21:20

Exactly - your DSD mum raised your DSD expectations by committing your DH to something on his behalf.

Something, I'm afraid to say, that a lot of resident mums seem to do - and then shatter their DCs feelings by "telling the truth" when the dcs dad can't or won't fulfil the commitment they've been signed up for.

Crossing boundaries like this only ends up hurting the DCs - and it amazes me how many self-proclaimed loving parents are willing to do it.

Andthentherewasmum Mon 01-Feb-16 10:28:07

I think he expected mum to not obligate him into a payment without prior discussion and then tell the daughter he won't pay without explaining the context.

Flixy102 Mon 01-Feb-16 10:47:57

This ^^ to a t!

Daisy2016 Mon 01-Feb-16 10:58:39

You can't give what you don't have. If it's not there it's not possible. Is she going to uni? In which case she won't be on the policy for long either. Having said that it'll make it cheaper for her in the future by being named on a policy, providing that the policy the mother chooses lets her build no claims by being a named driver. Hopefully DSD would understand if it's not possible it's not possible for her dad to contribute

Petal02 Mon 01-Feb-16 11:07:33

We always paid for as much as we could for DSS, and continue to do so, but for the majority of budgets, there is a limit !

Pantone363 Mon 01-Feb-16 11:14:50

What are the options here

A) mum pays all insurance and doesn't ask DH for help with it (presumably she's on DMs insurance as she drives her mums car and lives with her mum? Would be unnessesary to be on your DH insurance if she doesn't live with you most of the time)

B) DM tells her she can't insure her on her own. Which kind of leaves the "can't dad help" question in the air. No dad said he can't afford it (which is the truth). It's not blaming your DH its stating the truth, he's said he can't afford it

C) both parents tell DD they can't afford it together and she should get a paid job to help with it.

C is clearly the best soloution

Petal02 Mon 01-Feb-16 11:19:55

Agree that C is the best solution.

Petal02 Mon 01-Feb-16 11:31:21

PS - DSS's first year of car insurance cost approx £1200 (with a black box) but came down to around £600 in the second year.

PrettyBrightFireflies Mon 01-Feb-16 11:43:20

How about option D, which is that there isn't the assumption by the teen that they will be insured on either parents car and that if they want wheels, they cover the costs themselves - and if that means saving up, or waiting, then so be it?

The mum created this situation by insuring the DC on her own car, without thinking through the longer term implications. That thoughtlessness has resulted in a disappointed 17 year old. The mum should be taking responsilbity for that; the OPs DP is not a factor.

Pantone363 Mon 01-Feb-16 11:55:10


Do a poll on how many parents help with kids car insurance. It's the norm nowadays. Why should it just be mum who pays and not dad.

Did he contribute to lessons, test etc. Could make a difference here

PrettyBrightFireflies Mon 01-Feb-16 12:09:55

pantone The norm? For whom? In my area, it's not "the norm" for families to have a car!

An almost adult teen, who has no job, has had driving lessons and passed their driving test and then climbs into their parents car at their parents expense is a luxury, not an essential.

It may be the 'norm' for you and your social circle, but it certainly isn't for many - your crude dismissal of others financial and social cicumstsnces demonstrates how sheltered and blinkered your life is.

Flixy102 Mon 01-Feb-16 12:10:46

Why does mum get to choose that DSD has to be added to her insurance without prior discussion with dad? It wouldn't happen in a joint household. I imagine in a joint household, finances would be discussed before any decisions were made.

Nowhere did I say dad shouldn't pay or that mum should have to pay, mum chose to add her daughter then expects dad to pay half without prior discussion. Not fair.

Petal02 Mon 01-Feb-16 12:12:05

Pantone I think you've got the wrong end of the stick here. This thread isn't about whether Dad should pay, it's about a Dad who can't pay. There's quite a difference.

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