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Child maintenance dispute for a 16 year old!

(11 Posts)
zebrano Thu 13-Apr-17 19:15:00

My 16 year old DSS has not been getting on with his DM for quite some time (following 4 years alienation from his dad) and 18 months ago his mum put his bed from the shared bedroom away in the loft and he has slept on the sofa/in his sisters bed ever since. His older brother (who he used to share with) has a room to himself. DH has been paying full maintenance via CMS for the eligible kids - fine with him. There is a complete breakdown in communication with the mum since the alienation and DSS has been in school counselling over it all, so we try to avoid conflict.

Naturally having no bed has been very unsettling for DSS and finally in January this year he moved in with us, in his own room, spending one night a week at his mums. This April the CMS annual review has taken place and DH has informed of the change in circumstance, he said on the phone he was open to a 'shared care' assessment for DSS on the basis that he may wish to spend more time over at his mum's going forward, and so didn't intend to try and claim the child benefit (again to minimise conflict as ex would also risk losing tax credits etc).

However the CMS have said today that the ex refutes the fact DSS is living here whatsoever! It has left us rather surprised at such a bald faced lie! The CMS have asked for proof (I.e. Child benefit in DH's name- which we don't have). School records have been changed to DH as the main carer so maybe they would be willing to write a letter.
The only other thing I can think is for DSS himself to write a letter but we suspect that's going to be upsetting for him.

We've been paying for most of DSS needs for some years now, and since he moved in in Jan have bought school shoes, trainers, paid for mum-arranged cosmetic dentist (his mum wriggled out of contribution at the last minute), a private maths tutor after school raised serious concerns to DH about him failing exams, passport renewal, petrol driving to school 10 miles away, all happily paid for because that's what you do for a kid living with you! The CMS reduction would have only been a tiny fraction of what his costs are, and that's fine, but it's the principle.

phoenixtherabbit Thu 13-Apr-17 19:24:59

The cms told us they wouldn't accept any proof other than child benefit. You have to be claiming child benefit in order to put a claim in with them against the other parent.

I would apply for child benefit if I was you. The ex won't lose tax credits - she has to report changed to them herself, and if she hasn't, she's committing benefit fraud.

If you apply for child benefit for a child she's claiming for, they will write to her, she can obviously dispute it and tell them he lives with her, but they check things like who's the first contact at school, which doctors they're registered at, things like that.

zebrano Thu 13-Apr-17 20:12:04

Ok thanks for that. He is still registered at the doctors there but the school recognises us as first contact so I don't know what they will make of that!

BlueSkyBurningBright Mon 17-Apr-17 15:47:27

We had a similar situation.

DSS lives with us, ex put a claim in saying he lived with her. She got the child benefit as DH would not get it anyway. We proved that DSS lived with us with letters from the school, dentist and receipts for school dinners and stuff DH had bought for him. The child benefit did not seem to make a difference. DSS did not need to get involved.

Theresnonamesleft Mon 17-Apr-17 15:51:14

She shouldn't be getting money for someone not living with her. It's fraud. Claim for cb. If she hasn't informed any agency she did this knowing the consequences.

childmaintenanceserviceinquiry Mon 17-Apr-17 22:21:06

How does First contact work in a 50:50 care situation (curious)? I thought if both parents were named with a school, order didnt matter.

Thistly Tue 25-Apr-17 00:54:27

Blue sky.... She got the child benefit as DH would not get it anyway

Check this.... I think I read that if one parent is not eligible for cb(due to earning too much) then Other parentis not eligible either.

www.gov.uk/child-benefit-tax-charge/overview

WannaBe Tue 25-Apr-17 21:01:44

"Check this.... I think I read that if one parent is not eligible for cb(due to earning too much) then Other parentis not eligible either." makes no reference to that in that link and would be grossly unfair to penalise one parent for the earnings of the other who doesn't live with them. Afaik the rules are according to income within the household not the family.

That link states that the parent would not e eligible for the child benefit if they earn over the threshold, and that this would also count for other children living in the household which are not theirs. So e.g. My eXH earns over the threshold for CB but I do not, and the CB has always been in my name anyway. However, he has a partner who has a child of her own and they have a child together. As they live together his partner would not be eligible for CB for her child who is not his due to his income. But me and ex don't have an income therefore I am eligible for CB.

BlueSkyBurningBright Wed 26-Apr-17 19:32:59

"Check this.... I think I read that if one parent is not eligible for cb(due to earning too much) then Other parentis not eligible either."

It is only if your are in the same home. I do not get CB for my two kids because DH earns over the limit. They are not his kids. My exh does not earn over the limit so he has the CB. I was advised to change it to his name by the child benefit people when speaking to them. I do think it is grossly unfair that I do not get it because of DH's earnings. I explained that they are not his kids and he is under no obligation to support them, they said that as he lives with them he should support them, very twisted thinking.

Thistly Fri 28-Apr-17 00:52:34

Hi, thanks for correcting me. I had understood it to be quite unfair, and was shocked when I read that guidance, which is why I remembered it.

I do think it is grossly unfair that I do not get it because of DH's earnings. I explained that they are not his kids and he is under no obligation to support them, they said that as he lives with them he should support them, very twisted thinking.
I agree with this and imagine many familie suffer from this assumption that remarriage involves 'taking on' previous children.

befuddledgardener Fri 28-Apr-17 01:04:28

I think you can list every day in the last 3 months by date and put his sleeping location next to it. DS can check and sign it.

Also ask the school

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