Home > Financial > Working With the CSA on Support Payments

Working With the CSA on Support Payments

By: Chris Nickson - Updated: 14 Oct 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Child Support Maintenance Csa Lose Your

The financial circumstances of a separated father can change. Sometimes they’re for the better, if you get a new job or you get a good pay rise. At other times they’re for the worse, for example, you get laid off or the company closes. Sadly, in the current recession, the bad instances are likely to outpace the good.

Whatever happens, if you Pay Child Support and things change, the Child Support Agency (CSA) will need to recalculate the amount you pay, if everything is done through them. It’s not as daunting as it sounds, and they really do work with you to adjust to your new circumstances.

What if You Lose Your Job

Losing your job and going on benefits obviously means a drastic reduction in your income, which will affect the amount you can pay in child support. The CSA will look at your case again if you lose your job and you’re getting Income Support or income-based Jobseeker's Allowance, with no other income.

Where the new circumstances mean the amount of support will alter by £10 a week or more, then they’ll also re-open the case. Contacting them is easy, either through one of their offices or on the phone (08457 133 133 during office hours, including Saturday). Obviously, they can’t help you find a new job, but they can remove one area of stress from your life.

In some cases, your maintenance payments might have been taken off at source by your employer, so you’ll need to contact CSA about a new way of paying.

If You Become Self-Employed

If you no longer have a regular job, you might be inclined to try working for yourself to make money, and if you have a skill, it could work out – certainly it might be better than trying to survive on benefits. Obviously, however, it’s going to affect your income, and once again, CSA will work with you on calculating the amount you should be paying in child maintenance.

Normally, they’d look at the average weekly earnings you’d made as a self-employed person over the previous year. But when you’re starting out, that’s obviously impossible. Instead, they’ll see how much the business has grossed since it began, then take out all reasonable expenses and VAT in order to come up with an average weekly income, from which they can evaluate a new child support figure.

Again, it’s important that you contact CSA when you start working for yourself in order for them to make the new calculations. It’s in your own interests, as money is likely to be tight in the early days, and you’ll need to watch every penny. Remember, too, that they can obtain information from HMRC.

Getting Back to Work

If you’ve been unemployed and you’ve found a new job, you’ll be feeling relief. But it’s going to affect how much you pay each week in maintenance. The CSA website has an easy-to-use calculator that can let you see how much you’ll have to pay.

No matter what happens, it’s vital that you contact CSA as soon as possible. You’ll find that they really are there to help you – after all, you’ve been paying child support, not one of the deadbeat dads they have to chase down – and they’ll gladly work with you. Yes, they’re a bureaucracy and a government agency, but don’t let that put you off. Apart from anything else, you need them, and you should find that the process will go smoothly.

Of course, where you and your ex have come to a private agreement on child support and your income, or a large part of it, vanishes, then you’ll need to undertake negotiations through your lawyers to re-calculate the amount. Want to know how many fathers don't pay child support? read on...

Changes to the CSA

In November 2013 the CSA was replaced with the Child Maintenance Service, although the CSA is still in operation it is no longer taking on any new cases. New cases will be dealt with by the Child Maintance Service while exsiting cases will remain the responsibility of the CSA.

Check out the Separated Dads Forum... It's a great resource where you can ask for advice on topics including Child Access, Maintenance, CAFCASS, Fathers Rights, Court, Behaviour or simply to have a chat with other dads.

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[Add a Comment]
@Ems90 - it used to be take out after tax, but they have changed it. I think because some parents were paying loads of money into pensions etc in order to get out of paying child maintenance.
BaX - 16-Oct-17 @ 3:19 PM
Why is it worked out before tax and national insurance as its not a full representation of the money you take home you take less but are sort of being charged for money you don't have
Ems90 - 14-Oct-17 @ 12:52 PM
Hi my boyfriend pays £73 a week for his kids but now has another on the way, does he still need to pay full amount for 2 children?
Lala - 8-Oct-17 @ 4:56 PM
Herby2017 - Your Question:
I have just changed my job and as such have a different payment date which is a week later, I have informed my ex that I can either pay her part payment on the original date (7 days earlier so 7 days of payment) and the outstanding on my payday (7 days later than normal) or in full on my new payday.Should there be any problems through the CMA with this?I have always paid my way on time etc although she has said otherwise but I have always proven her wrong.

Our Response:
You would need to speak to CMS directly, we don't have any knowledge of its administrative procedures.
SeparatedDads - 28-Sep-17 @ 10:48 AM
I have just changed my job and as such have a different payment date which is a week later, I have informed my ex that I can either pay her part payment on the original date (7 days earlier so 7 days of payment) and the outstanding on my payday (7 days later than normal) or in full on my new payday. Should there be any problems through the CMA with this? I have always paid my way on time etc although she has said otherwise but I have always proven her wrong.
Herby2017 - 27-Sep-17 @ 11:13 AM
Lyn35 - Your Question:
Hi my partners son, is in full time eduction going into his last year but also has a particle job, does he still have to pay child maintainer?

Our Response:
Yes, your partner would to have to continue paying child maintenance to help support his child while his son is in full-time education. A part-time job does not count and is seen only as pocket money for himself.
SeparatedDads - 11-Sep-17 @ 2:46 PM
Hi my partners son, is in full time eduction going into his last year but also has a particle job, does he still have to pay child maintainer?
Lyn35 - 9-Sep-17 @ 8:06 AM
Stan - Your Question:
My son is 16, 17 in October, and was due to go to college beginning of September. He has now got a full time job as a srlf employed roofer, learning the trade from my pal, and will be taking an nvq at some stage. Do my maintenance payments remain or do they end.

Our Response:
Your child maintenance payments will end if your son is earning a wage as part of his training. They should officially end at the end of the school year September 1.
SeparatedDads - 29-Aug-17 @ 4:09 PM
My son is 16, 17 in October, and was due to go to college beginning of September. He has now got a full time job as a srlf employed roofer, learning the trade from my pal, and will be taking an nvq at some stage. Do my maintenance payments remain or do they end.
Stan - 26-Aug-17 @ 8:45 AM
Hi the father of my baby and I have split up I am bring my baby up by my self I get benefits and the father of my baby works full time in the army and if and when he gets time off he comes and has him weather it's for a couple of hours or a weekend he gets anything and everything that my boy needs clothes nappies food ect as I am on benifits I had went to job centre for an interview type thing to see how I am getting on and every time a go in they are pressuring me to apply for child maintenance would I need to apply for child maintenance even when he gets nappies ect it's not as if he doesn't pay for him Just confused really why he's paying for his son but I still need to apply for child maintenance when the only difference is am getting money to spend on the exact thing that's he is buying if anyone could give me advise it would be very much appreciated
Tasha - 14-Aug-17 @ 5:04 PM
Ca - Your Question:
I have paid direct maintenance to my ex husband for my daughter since she was 10 and she has just turned 18. She lives full time with her father. She attends college but not full time I can't find out how many hours. When will my direct maintenance finish? Thanks

Our Response:
If you pay child maintenance through CMS, then payments will end when child benefit does. Approved courses are listed here .
SeparatedDads - 7-Aug-17 @ 12:20 PM
I have paid direct maintenance to my ex husband for my daughter since she was 10 and she has just turned 18. She lives full time with her father. She attends college but not full time I can't find out how many hours. When will my direct maintenance finish? Thanks
Ca - 5-Aug-17 @ 9:37 AM
Hi, Im have a friend who has split up with his partner 6 months ago, last year he made approx £70, 000 but he is now self employed and has been for 4 months, csa have calculated his contributions from his previous salary which he is no longer on or even close too, he is really struggling with these payments and all he is being told is he has to wait until the end of the next tax year for it to be reviewed, is this correct? What if he totally lost his job what would happen? Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
Redzee! - 12-Jul-17 @ 6:14 PM
Sammy - Your Question:
My ex has stopped working however has £250k in the house and refuses to pay anything towards our daughter. I work full and have had to buy a house- paying for before and after school clubs as they refuse to help with school even though they aren't working. I don't want anything from the house for the 10years we were together- however feel I should be able to get something weekly ( as it's a large 4 bedroom house with one person living in it) Our daughter stays over 2nights a week. am I entitled to something, or could the house be sold to provide some money- weekly or monthly- I don't want a lot just to cover basic costs

Our Response:
It seems you are mixing up child maintenance and assets which have no bearing on each other. For your ex to eligible to pay child maintenance he has to be earning and paying tax via HMRC. Child Maintenance Service will not go after him while he is not earning and child maintenance will not go after assets, unless the paying parent has built up avoidable arrears. However, if you are the joint owner of the house and/or if you were unmarried and co-habiting, you may be able to register an interest in the house and you may be entitled to a financial share as part of your married/co-habitation right. You can see more via the CAB link here .
SeparatedDads - 3-Jul-17 @ 12:24 PM
My ex has stopped working however has £250k in the house and refuses to pay anything towards our daughter. I work full and have had to buy a house- paying for before and after school clubs as they refuse to help with school even though they aren't working...I don't want anything from the house for the 10years we were together- however feel i should be able to get something weekly ( as it's a large 4 bedroom house with one person living in it) Our daughter stays over 2nights a week.... am I entitled to something, or could the house be sold to provide some money- weekly or monthly- I don't want a lot just to cover basic costs
Sammy - 2-Jul-17 @ 11:26 PM
My daughter us now 18. Any csa payments received sporadically over the years were minimal as father always claimed benefits. Obviously he owes backdated from months when csa had to track him down &start payments up again. And only then after me making enquiries into why it stopped. Will I be due backdated monies or get payments after my daughter is too old to legally be entitled to csa?
Jj - 21-Jun-17 @ 10:28 PM
Cj - Your Question:
To add to that comment, sent payslips in December after 3 months of receiving the payslips back in march, a further two months later eg. Present time I receive a form asking for work details and more payslips they have been informed of a change in circumstances! I told them in December! All in all 6 months and still nothing about my payments and of course more time because still waiting which means more arrears. Csa get people in debt they have to cap this it's ridiculous how we suffer for their mistakes.

Our Response:
Your only option would be to pay child maintenance in order to prevent falling into arrears. If you are responsible by law for paying child maintenance towards your children's day-to-day care, then you will naturally fall into arrears if you do not make any payments. Yes, there is no obligation to pay until your claim has been fully assessed, but you will naturally accrue arrears from the weeks and months you haven't paid while the assessment is taking place.
SeparatedDads - 13-Jun-17 @ 2:09 PM
To add to that comment, sent payslips in December after 3 months of receiving the payslips back in march, a further two months later eg... Present time I receive a form asking for work details and more payslips they have been informed of a change in circumstances! I told them in December! All in all 6 months and still nothing about my payments and of course more time because still waiting which means more arrears.. Csa get people in debt they have to cap this it's ridiculous how we suffer for their mistakes.
Cj - 6-Jun-17 @ 12:27 PM
Sent payslips 6 months ago and heard nothing apart from payslips sent back 3 months later. I ring them and everything will be back dated so arrears! It's not my fault they take so long it's very unfair. No obligation about paying but they have occurred additional charges in their behalf there has to be some sort of stop to all this. Is there anything that can be done. I have evidence when I sent everything.
Cj - 6-Jun-17 @ 12:22 PM
Kevbwigston - Your Question:
What a waste of time. Absent fathers are scum to csa csm. If you are a regular payer you are the golden apple to them. Stuff weather you can survive. Suicide is the only way out. But they will come and pilfere your belongings like vultures on a dead body.

Our Response:
We are sorry to hear you are finding things difficult. By law, every father is deemed as being jointly financially responsible for the day-to-day upkeep of their children. If you are struggling with this situation, please try and find someone you can speak to who may be able to help such as Families Need Fathers herecan help support you through advice. If you feel suicidal, please seek help by talking to someone who can help you through this such as the Samaritans here.
SeparatedDads - 19-May-17 @ 10:54 AM
What a waste of time. Absent fathers are scum to csa csm. If you are a regular payer you are the golden apple to them. Stuff weather you can survive. Suicide is the only way out. But they will come and pilfere your belongings like vultures on a dead body.
Kevbwigston - 18-May-17 @ 5:43 PM
Been separated for 2 month. Set an maintance payment with ex at a sum of 85 pounds. Now I got a letter from CMS that they will use my last years earnings as a base which was 35500. My basic is 26000. All the rest has been done through working additional 12hrs shifts /50 days, that is 1 a week/ but then I was still with my ex and we were living togheter so I had seen my children every day. Now separated, cant do any OT as she has set the dates for meeting children by herself. I can either take them or come back next week as she says. How can I do OT if I dont know what dates she will throw at me? How can I manage to pay 130 ponuds a week from 400 in my hand, pay all the bills savings?
Rosco - 13-May-17 @ 1:57 AM
Elar - Your Question:
Hi. My partner has a child. His giving for her mother £270 a month. He worn around £1100 a month (net payment), he just have a baby now and I'm just getting maternity allowence. Is this amount, right or he is paying to much? Thanks

Our Response:
Your partner can check how much he should be paying via the CMS link here.
SeparatedDads - 28-Apr-17 @ 2:42 PM
Hi. My partner has a child. His giving for her mother £270 a month. He worn around £1100 a month (net payment), he just have a baby now and I'm just getting maternity allowence.Is this amount, right or he is paying to much? Thanks
Elar - 28-Apr-17 @ 12:43 PM
nosaj - Your Question:
I was contacted in February2017 the a deductions of earnings has been put on me on an 18 year old child I know nothing about. They are going to be taking £263 a month of me in May. I only work 21hrs as I help with looking after my disabled son with my wife, we also have a 13 year old son. Child maintenance survives have said there's nothing I can do. Is this true.

Our Response:
You would have to take the matter further, please see link here.
SeparatedDads - 31-Mar-17 @ 3:01 PM
I was contacted in February2017 the a deductions of earnings has been put on me on an 18 year old child I know nothing about. They are going to be taking £263 a month of me in May. I only work 21hrs as I help with looking after my disabled son with my wife, we also have a 13 year old son. Child maintenance survives have said there's nothing I can do. Is this true.
nosaj - 30-Mar-17 @ 7:39 PM
Hi my son has autism.I have looked aftrr him 3 days a week sometimes more since he was born.I felt it a bit unfair my ex got all the financial benefits and I got none.I spoke to social services and the benefits department who adviced to ask her for some and I could npt make a separate claim.I asked her and she became quite volatile and angry with me.A few months later I moved in with a new girlfriend and informed my ex that my son would be staying over at a different address.She has told me she will not allow my son to stay over at our house and is being difficult with me just seeing him for a few hours.She wants more money off me now and I have give her an extra £100 this month.I am hoping she comes around my son is 13 now.I dont want to go to court but this may be my only option.
Dava - 20-Mar-17 @ 11:24 PM
butch - Your Question:
My husband has just had a letter from the csa saying we owe them money from 23 years ago we do not believe that we owe anything can they do this

Our Response:
If your husband avoid paying at any point, or slipped into arrears etc, the CSA can. If your husband feels he is being unfairly treated in this respect, he can complain here.
SeparatedDads - 16-Mar-17 @ 12:09 PM
my husband has just had a letter from the csa saying we owe them money from 23 years ago we do not believe that we owe anything can they do this
butch - 15-Mar-17 @ 5:06 PM
Should the CSA send the mother my yearly earnings? Or just the amount they should expect from me each month?
Eales - 12-Mar-17 @ 6:49 PM
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