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DD finishing A levels and going to Uni

(50 Posts)
FMTHSthedad Tue 15-Jan-13 16:11:15

Anyone in the same boat as me. DD has Separated parents. (Unmarried, too). DD does not live with me, but stays with me 10 days a month. I have always been paying more than CSA requirement. Child support ends in June. I will no longer legally be obliged to pay anything. However, mum doesn't earn much. Can 18yo DD claim JSA until she starts Uni? Would it be unfair of me to pay only HALF what I have been paying per month, until she goes to uni (then re-negotiate the top up to the Uni Grant DD will receive?) Should I make DD find work for the summer holidays and offer to pay mum a token amount for board and lodging?

Sleepysand Tue 15-Jan-13 16:48:14

Can she claim JSA - I think only from the end of August, so for maybe 3 weeks, about £100 all in. Not really what it is meant for.

Would it be unfair to pay only half - yes, probably - I imagine her mum is already wondering how she will cope losing maintenance and child benefit. But up to you - I don't think you would ask if you thought it was fair.

Should you make DD find work etc - how? Very few jobs out there, I am afraid. My DS1 had one for 3 days a week, paid him about £100 a week, but he saved that towards his uni costs.

FMTHSthedad Tue 15-Jan-13 17:22:41

@Sleepysand. Interesting. Thanks for your thoughts. I did think it was fair to pay half (what I have been paying) given that I am not obliged to pay anything at all after DD hits 18. Am assuming that as child is no longer a child, and needs less care, mum could finally go into full time employment and begin financially contributing more.

Agreed, that's not what JSA is meant for - just looking for ways to bolster the income legally.

DD should find work - again, a way to add to the pot, bring down my contribution and give her an idea of standing on own two feet.

Rascalls3 Tue 15-Jan-13 17:24:25

I am not in this situation( married,both of us in full-time employment),but from my experience with student funding your daughter will have very generous grants /loans when she gets to uni if your ex is in the lowest income group and will be alot better off financially than many other students.
Look into the figures yourself, but I don't think you will need to contribute a huge amount( if any). I do think though that you should continue with your current payments until student finance kicks in (you should find plenty of info on the 'Student Room' Forum-money and finance section) Make sure she has enough 'stuff' for uni before you stop your payments- she may need a new laptop for example.
D0 encourage her to get a job during the summer,my 3 daughters all have part-time jobs despite living in rural Sussex.

FMTHSthedad Tue 15-Jan-13 17:29:12

Thanks. Laptop is on my list. Am vaguely aware that the uni grant will cover the vast majority of expenditure. I was hoping to save myself some money for the period between end of A levels and grant kicking in - not because I am a miser, but struggling with debt as mortgage doubled last year and finding it hard to cope. Thought daughter could earn a bit (if poss!) to help out, would be the first time she's worked/earned.

FMTHSthedad Tue 15-Jan-13 17:30:15

p.s. I don't pay "maintenance" as we were never married, just child support. Again, far more than the CSA would have ruled.

LineRunner Tue 15-Jan-13 17:30:49

I am the resident lone parent of a DD (17), I don't earn much, and I have to say I am concerned that all at once we will lose child benefit, child tax credit and child support, and yet face university costs.

I don't know how people manage.

Rascalls3 Tue 15-Jan-13 17:53:59

FMTHSthedad, you sound like you've been a very thoughtful dad. As I said above I don't think you will need to pay anything come Sept/Oct, but you will need to have a plan re. what you can manage June-Sept. You don't want to come across as the bad guy after all you've done over the years. Her mother must be anticipating this. Could you sit down and talk this through with you daughter? If she's sporty I can recommend the pool Life Guard qualification. It does cost £200 to complete but she is almost guaranteed employment through the holidays and could even do shifts whilst at uni. Good luck.

FMTHSthedad Tue 15-Jan-13 18:00:59

Are you familiar with the scene in the Exorcist, when the girls head turns 360 degrees and projectile vomits green bilge? That's a bit like my ex when I try to have a conversation about money with her. All reasonable, adult, calm conversations just turn into blazing rows...I am going to have to email any "proposals" I have for finance as it is, so as to avoid inflaming the situ. Once she starts ranting, I generally rant back - so email it is!

FMTHSthedad Tue 15-Jan-13 18:02:00

From what I understand, the less you earn, the easier it will be to get Uni costs covered by grants/bursaries.

Rascalls3 Tue 15-Jan-13 18:09:23

Ooooh good luck with that one.You've made me laugh and I've had a very long day, so thank you.

FMTHSthedad Tue 15-Jan-13 18:10:18

DD keen to work during summer hols but prob hasn't considered handing any of it to mum for "keep". Lifeguard thing already been looked into - local (outdoor) pool v popular with local yoof and places to lifeguard all sewn up 2 years in advance. DD's course not conducive to part time work (apparently). Thank you

Scrazy Tue 15-Jan-13 18:13:00

Child related benefits will finish at the end of August. This is CTC, CB and Child Support, then your DD will get student finance. When resident parents are on a low income, under 25K then tuition fee loans, maintenance grants and maintenance loans are all available. Universities usually also offer non repayable bursaries, although since 2012 then don't even know what they can and cannot offer, it's still up in the air.

Of course, DC's are likely to expect to be fed and watered when they come home and holidays are long, which can be a drain on a low income, as they tend to think that their money is eked out for term times only.

The good news is that if a student is from a lower income home they tend to be better off financially than those relying on parents to top up. Quite rightly, imo as I really cannot afford to top my DD up with money as I only earn enough to support myself.


Sleepysand Tue 15-Jan-13 18:17:37

DD will indeed get a fairly big maintenance grant and possibly a bursary too. But you need to not make her the go-between in this last phase of you and her mum finally becoming financially separate. I think that is probably the cause of my rather negative tone. She won't need top-ups, and her mum probably should have been working FT long since - I have done (in similar situation but with 4 DCs) since DCs were 8.

Scrazy Tue 15-Jan-13 18:19:35

Should have added no JSA at all and the reason Child support etc continues until August is because they are going into higher education. It's June if not.

Sleepysand Tue 15-Jan-13 18:24:55

PS - IMO, email is the way to go. XH and I rarely discuss things face to face, and we are actually both quite reasonable - obviously me more than him (!) - if we talk, it descends into a slanging match as often as not, and we have been apart a very long time.

But keep your DD out of it.

Scrazy, I do think they are entitled to JSA from (?) around A level results day until they go to Uni, but it is only 3 weeks. My son was working and therefore didn't claim, but I think friends of his (some quite wealthy angry) did, esp those that were off to the "Hogwarts" unis (IYSWIM) that start a bit later.

LineRunner Tue 15-Jan-13 18:28:28

@LineRunner From what I understand, the less you earn, the easier it will be to get Uni costs covered by grants/bursaries.

I understand I am still expected to support my DD, during holidays when she lives with me, and with top-ups, but her father isn't.

FMTHSthedad Tue 15-Jan-13 18:29:47

Thanks for your reply.
Spoke with CSA yesterday and they confirm, Child Support (from estranged, non resident parent) stops at;
16 if child leaves school to work
18 if child stays to 6th form (or goes to 6th form college)
20 if child goes into "further education"
Last one does NOT include university, it means:
" A levels, NVQ Level 1, 2 and 3, GCSE and BTEC National Diploma "

Scrazy Tue 15-Jan-13 18:30:25

Sleepy, we lost out then because we didn't know that angry. DD was working until July, then went traveling and was home without a job and income from August to student finance.

I think the rest of my info is correct as we went through it last year. My income took a tumble so I worked full time from the year previously anticipating this. Good thing is that I can live on less money a week when DD is away.

Scrazy Tue 15-Jan-13 18:33:16

Anyone know if there is JSA available in the summer break whilst looking for a job. There used to be but I think not now. DD will be looking for a job and has to find rent for her house in uni town too.

My child related benefits ended end of August, cannot remember when student finance came through. Middle of Sept so can see that she should have signed on, damn.

LineRunner Tue 15-Jan-13 18:34:16

Well, do what you feel is right, OP. My father helped me out at university and I will always be grateful.

FMTHSthedad Tue 15-Jan-13 18:35:30

@ Sleepysand - agreed on "go-between" viewpoint. Alas, I have no proof but a strong suspicion, ex believes portion of my monthly child support has been for HER, not DD alone. I suspect this is why she gets so p****d off when we talk about money. One more reason to delineate and explain that DD is no longer a child, at 18, and therefore, no longer in need of "child support" £ from me. Hence my suggestion of JSA / summer job. Technically and legally (never mind morally for the mo) I am not obliged to pay any longer as child is now an adult. Mum can now look for full time work as she is no longer "childminding"


Glad you can empathise with the difficulty of having discussions with ex..and OF COURSE you are more reasonable than him, LOL WE ALL ARE MORE REASONABLE LOL !!

Scrazy Tue 15-Jan-13 18:35:59

Saying that, her father stopped paying child support a few months before (he made it up to DD) so not sure when it was meant to stop. I thought they said end August.

OpheliasWeepingWillow Tue 15-Jan-13 18:37:45

A TEFL qualification may be suitable for her? I used to go teach at full board residential courses for foreign students in the holidays. Kept me in cash and well fed. I always seemed to find a job that way.

FMTHSthedad Tue 15-Jan-13 18:38:20

@Scrazy - your last post about signing on...
YEAH this is what I was asking about earlier. Maybe I am merely reminiscing to my late teens when you could "sign on" at end of final term whilst looking for work. (I didn't, got a job straight away, but am pretty sure it was pretty available and straightforward)

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