Child benefit causing housing issues

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  • #43662 Report



    Long story – ex husband left me and 4 children for another woman. I let him have contact with the kids – he then stole them away and took them 80 miles away to live with his new girlfriend. – got them into new schools. They lost their places at old school. Went to court – as they had lost their school places Judge said they stay with dad during court proceedings. I lost the house (private rental) as I  was a stay at home mum. This was because he took his name from the tenancy and they didnt rent to non workers. He transferred all child benefit to his name- so when I went to get rehoused by the council they cant take into consideration my 4 children because he has the child benefit for them. I tried contesting the child benefit going to him but as the kids were with him and I didnt know where they were… I couldnt get them back and the benefit goes to whoever has them.

    2 years on. I live closer to them, see them 50 percent of time, its a live with live with order – but he still gets child benefit and wont let me have any of it.

    So i am in a 1 bedroom house, and having to feed, clothe, support my 4 children 50 percent of the time AND pay child maintenance to my ex.

    Where is the justice in this? I have no bed.  A 2 seater sofa is my bed. The one bedroom I have is for my children.

    I never thought I would get screwed over.

    There doesn’t seem to be anyone that can help me in my situation and it is causing me major stress.

    #43701 Report

    Hi there Primrose14

    Hopefully it won’t be too long before other forum users are able to chat and relate to your situation.  In the meantime please remember that you can always speak with one of our helpline advisers.  They should be able to help you to explore what options may be available to you.  Here are their contact details:

    • Gingerbread Single Parent Helpline – Freephone 0808 802 0925

    Opening hours:  Mon 10 – 6, Tues 10- 4, Wed 10 – 1 & 5 – 7, Thurs 10 – 4, Fri 10 – 4  They can be busy so callers can expect to wait up to 20 minutes before the call is answered.

    Hope that helps, Justine

    #43707 Report


    Hi Primrose.  These maybe things you have already looked into, or  unable to do, but as you have them 50% of the time, could you not put a child benefit claim in for 2 of the 4 children.  How old are your children?  If all aspects of child care are equal is maintenance even due as you would be sharing the costs as well.

    #43722 Report



    I would certainly concur with Winnie7465 above.

    Submit a claim for child benefit and appeal against the child maintenance services (most incompetent government agency I have ever dealt with) but nevertheless you need to appeal as you should not be paying child maintenance if the children are staying with you half the time.

    Not sure if after your appeal, you should start a counter claim for child maintenance support. Reason being is that an appeal can take weeks and months for the incompetent body to review.

    Please note the child benefit will continue to be paid to the other half for 4 weeks after a successful application. Been there done that!

    Look for and ask for support from your local family support agency, The agency helped me with all my applications and helped me navigate the system. Your GP or Sure Start centre maybe able to signpost/make a referral.

Viewing 4 posts - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)

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