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Is it better to go through CSA or private?

(5 Posts)
Whitechester Fri 28-Oct-16 11:27:03

My oh was instructed to pay over the odds maintenance to his ex during the divorce to keep her sweet. It didn't work and she took him to the cleaners - he walked away with nothing.

He has been paying this each month for the past year or so. She says it's not enough, but it's a third of his low earner salary!! In addition to her making other demands on what he pays for, which he does, we just cannot afford to live on what is left after the maintenance - especially as we have them 50/50 so obviously need to provide for them when they are in our care.

I've told my oh that he really needs to speak to his ex as we are financially struggling. We can afford to eat but money is tight. We can't afford treats/luxuries/holidays. Whilst it's not really relevant, she is a high income earner.

I know if he broaches the subject it will turn soar. She will no doubt threaten to stop the kids coming, bad mouth him to everyone she knows, but we just can't sustain this amount.

So I'm wondering is going through the csa a better option? And then he says in addition to that he will contribute towards 'joint' extras?

needsahalo Fri 28-Oct-16 15:32:40

Were they married? If so, it is highly unlikely he walked away with nothing at all. He can go to the CMS to override the court order and if care is genuinely 50/50, he shouldn't have to pay anything.

You are correct, her earnings are irrelevant.

AnneLovesGilbert Fri 28-Oct-16 15:34:27

Is the amount he pays part of the court settlement? If so how long has this been in place?

If you go through the CSA, if the care is shared 50-50 there won't be any child maintenance due. Court ordered spousal maintenance is different as this will have formed part of the divorce agreement and be paid for her upkeep, not the children's and won't be affected by shared care.

You say he was "instructed", by who?

You're right, it doesn't matter at all what she earns, both of their parents have a responsibility to support them financially and your DP doesn't get to pay less than is legally ordered because she earns more than he does.

You can check what the CSA payment would be by popping the relevant figures into the online calculator and this will give you an idea what, if anything is due if 50/50 care is really in place.

If there's court ordered child maintenance there should also be a child arrangements order which will set out who has the children when. In theory this gives you DP protection from her messing around with contact, but it should also be clear whether the financial settlement was based on shared care.

Whitechester Sat 29-Oct-16 13:51:56

He walked away with little because they didn't do the financials. They 'agreed' on a split and he waited ages to make it legal but she refused to, so his solicitor advised him to just file for the absolute. Signing the financials is ongoing!! Hence why the split was so unfair.

He doesn't have a spousal order or court ordered maintenance.

Redken24 Sun 30-Oct-16 10:47:06

Check the maintenance calculator before your OH applies for CSA.
Bear in mind that once there involved it is hard to get rid of them.

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