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Child Maintenance & Spousal Maintenance at Annual Payrise & Bonus Time..!!!

16 replies

aimeesmummy · 20/06/2007 21:47

My ex, who I split from last Sept and he moved out just before xmas, is due a payrise and bonus in July. He currently pays me an amount for Child Maintenance worked out according to CSA calcs but on top of that he pays me "Spousal Maintenance" which is an amount to cover my basic costs to stay in the family home. I believe the Child Maintenance portion should increase in line with his payrise but my Solicitor advises that he COULD then decrease the Spousal Maintenance by the same amount leaving me with no increase in real terms. I'm also advised that he COULD decrease his Spousal Maintenance by the amount of MY payrise if he feels like it (we have no legally binding agreement, it's all verbally agreed and on good faith).

Has anyone had any experience of this sort of thing?

I'm getting a bit stressed about asking for an increase because he's still pissed off with me for breaking up the family but I am strapped for cash and have no savings to cover emergencies etc and have used my credit card a few times which I've not wanted to do. I'm loathe to go through the CSA as looking at the calcs, he's based what he pays me as if our daughter is the 1st and only child he pays for whereas in fact he also pays his 1st wife for their son (who just turned 18, yes he's been through all this before which makes me feel even worse) and if it all goes through the CSA, the amount he pays me would halve (roughly)..!

Also, how the hell do I ask for a portion of his bonus? Should I? I know according to the CSA it's counted as income but he'd hit the roof.

Please can you share experiences of how to cope with far less cash than you were used to when together, how you cope with emergencies (I had to have the heating looked at recently), that sort of thing. Could really do with some advice!

Sorry for the ramble, this is probably only the first of several "asking for advice" postings!

OP posts:
agnesnitt · 21/06/2007 09:23

If you're already getting more from him than the CSA would award you I'd just learn how to budget better. I don't mean that in a harsh way, it's just that you're already better off than you would be so there isn't much point in making things even worse for yourself.


missgiggles · 21/06/2007 15:28

Hi, as for the asking your ex for more money i'm afraid i have no advice (split from my ex 3 yrs ago went through csa and have yet to recive a penny ds 2 1/2)

however have become v good at budgeting
for gas n elec if you get both from same commpany n pay DD each mth - but ask them to do the cheapest poss payment as most like you to pay £5 - £10 more than you need to to make sure you don't go in to deat(daoesn't sound like much but can make a big difference)
for tv license ring up and join Cash Easy Entry pay each week ongoing approx £5.50 per wk depending on when due, same for water get a booklet to pay each wk.
buy saver stamps at the post office £5 each and put them towards bills you pay there when moneys tight or its a great way to save for the car tax
Food shopping is the worst for best deals need to go to 2/3 shops and get the cheepest/best from each shop.
i've found getting an isa i can dip into great for unexpected bills and one you can't good for x-mas come in handy.
wrighting down every penny you spend for a few wks is good to see where you can cut back (choc, mags ect ... that you buy and don't even think about)and wrighting yourself a budget that looks great on paper but if your anything like me you know you'll never stick to! but at least you'll know what your aiming for,

and if all else fills reach for your credit card!!!
hope that helps sorry it's been a bit long winded.

P.s did i mention i can't spell? sorry!

mumto3girls · 21/06/2007 15:32

I don't think you should ask for anything more as you know that you're getting more than you should anyway!

mojosmum · 21/06/2007 15:46

ive been to solicitors re: exp today & mensioned maintenance & exps payrise & stated that i know i wouldnt got that much from csa she confirmed i wouldnt get that much & exp would know that so wouldnt ask dor it as he may stop paying then would have togo csa & get even less basically she said i would be spiting myself

Tinkerbel5 · 21/06/2007 17:36

amiesmummy its rare these days to even get spousal maintenace so the fact you get that and child support is a bonus, so unless you have a court order I dont think you can ask for any more money, as advised you could ask for more child support but you could end up with nothing if he gets riled and jacks his job in, do you work ?

Tinkerbel5 · 21/06/2007 17:39

look on to make sure you claim what you are entitled too.

aimeesmummy · 22/06/2007 09:52

Hi, thanks for all the replies, all along the sort of lines I was thinking 2b honest. It's all still new and bloody hard work.
Yes, I do work, pretty much full time; financial advisor suggests looking at Working Tax Credit but when I rang a while ago, they said anyone with a household income over over £15k isn't eligible but my financial advisor says the limit is more than that. Does anyone know?
As for the Spousal Maintenance, yes I know I'm lucky to be getting that but you should see the amount the mortgage is each month...! Spousal Maintenance just covers a part of that; he knows if he didn't contribute towards it, the house would quickly be repossessed and we'd both loose out.
I am DREADING looking to buy somewhere on my own round here in a half-decent school catchment area.

OP posts:
Tinkerbel5 · 22/06/2007 17:44

so the spousal maintenance is more to keep the house going so it dont get reposessed and him lose out on his share of the equity (and you aswell), would it be cheaper to sell the house and you go on and buy something a bit smaller that might be cheaper ?

check out the tax credits website and put in all your details and see if you are entitled to anything

aimeesmummy · 22/06/2007 21:44

Yep, that's about right. If we do sell and I get somewhere by myself, I'll be paying in mortgage about the same as what I contribute to the joint mortgage at the moment but for a much smaller house. House prices round here are astronomical, I was looking in the paper this evening, it's very scary.

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aimeesmummy · 22/06/2007 21:44

Yep, that's about right. If we do sell and I get somewhere by myself, I'll be paying in mortgage about the same as what I contribute to the joint mortgage at the moment but for a much smaller house. House prices round here are astronomical, I was looking in the paper this evening, it's very scary.

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aimeesmummy · 22/06/2007 21:48

MissGiggles... I'll start writing every little thing down, thanx for all the ides! I can see me cutting back on chocolate quite a bit!

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CarGirl · 22/06/2007 21:52

mmm is it worth talking to him and deciding what to do about the house. If you keep it one both of you pay half the mortgage and half the cost to essential repairs/maintenance (those that will maintain and add value) he may be happy to do it. Of course if you move somewhere smaller the other bills would be less?

I think isn't there something about you being entitled to more than half the house until your child is 18???

aimeesmummy · 22/06/2007 22:23

My Solicitor says I can legally stay in the family home until dd reaches 18, so another 12 years, and he'd have to support us. However, it was me who broke us up pretty soon after making the massive mistake of getting hitched and I don't want to completely take the p*ss...

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moonmum · 23/06/2007 22:01

hi every1

Judy1234 · 23/06/2007 22:37

If you earn more than him then you pay him spousal maintenance. If he earns more than you you pay him. Quite a lot of women pay out to men in divorce as they earn more (as I did) but assuming you earn less and there is not enough money to split your equity in the house 50/50 and have a clean break with no spouse maintenance which is usually the preferred solution then you may well be able to stay in the house until the youngest is 18 or you cohabit or move if you can afford the mortgage and your ex can afford the spousal maintenance. He might want to be taken off the mortgage so he can get another mortgage though. Would the lender allow you to take it over in your own name particularly as you work full time?

aimeesmummy · 24/06/2007 20:41

Preferred solution is split equity and me get my own place that I can afford independantly, however.... house prices, house prices, house prices, school catchment areas, school catchment area, school catchment areas...
Solicitor advises it's far better for women with child care to beome as independant as soon as practically possible after a split and that IS what I want to do. I'm really exploring all options at the moment. Will be applying to middle school for DD this autumn and will look at secondary school catchment areas after that.
(Hi Moonmum?)

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