Child maintenance advice

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  • #8720 Report


    Hi solo parents.  This may be a bit of a sensitive subject but I hoped someone might be able to offer some advice.  My ex and I have been separated for almost two years now.  We have two young boys together (3and 8 Years) he pays me monthly for them both and always has.  I’m not sure if what he’s giving me is right.  He says he used a calculator and it’s estimated £360 a month for both boys.  Whilst I am grateful that he’s not just done a runner completely it’s a real struggle to cope.  The boys live solely with me as he deems his current living arrangements not suitable for the boys and in the 20 months we have been separated he has never had them over night and comes to my house to spend his time with them.  What he’s givig me works out at £5.10 a day for each boy.  £10.20 a day for both.  They eat more then that in a day between them! That doesn’t include new school bits and bobs and extra child care.  I try very hard to be good with money but with my rent being over £1000 a month and working part time to fit around the kids the months can stretch sometimes.  I had to reach out to him yesterday and ask him for help with Our youngests nursery as I owed them £40 for an extra day and he said he could lend it to me but I would need to pay it back when I could.  I just got so upset as it’s not money for my own personal enjoyment, it’s for our boys education and care.   I provide all food and lunches, clothes, everything.  their dad will only purchase something for them if I ask him to and of course I hate to ask or am made to feel a bit like a **** if I do ask..

    So anyway I realise I’ve gone off the point a bit.  I wondered if there was anyone on here who might know a bit more about how calculations are worked out and how a figure is reached in deciding what should be paid.

    #8723 Report


    Hello, you should go to citizens advice. I will go there at some point to find out about child maintenance and support etc. Will message again in the next week or so and let you know.

    hope things get sorted for you

    #8724 Report


    I came across this calculator a few days which may be useful…


    #8727 Report


    I’ve tried the calculator before and it calculates less monthly then what he’s giving me by about £40.  The calculator says that I’m entitled to a basic maintenance payment of £80 a week.  I will give citizens advice ago because he has a very well paid job and I’m not sure if it’s right.  I don’t want him for his money at all, usually he never has any! But it’s hard to see him walking around in nice new designer accessories and I can’t afford to by the kids new clothes that are getting too small.  I just don’t think £5.10 a day let child is right, how am I meant to provide them with decent stuff?

    #8740 Report


    It only gives an option to put that the children stay with him less the 52 nights a year, there isn’t an option for no nights and it doesn’t ask anything about nursery or about my earnings.  It just doesn’t seem like a lot and anything extra I ask from him has to be a loan so I don’t ask because I can’t afford to pay it back!

    #8749 Report



    Do you get child/working tax credits because they used to help with childcare costs I remember there used to be a part on the form my 2 are both at school now so can’t remember how it worked and the eligibility.

    #8750 Report

    Are you entitled to any benefits?  Does Child Tax Credit still exist?

    If you genuinely believe he should be paying more you could go down the CMS route and they will have access to his earnings declared to HMRC, but like you said, it may end up that you actually lose money.

    #8807 Report


    To Nix88

    If your Ex has children for less than 52 nights per year then there is no deduction.  You can use CMS to make an assessment as they can access his Tax Returns from HMRC or ask for a P60 to determine what he earns assuming he is PAYE.  There is a 20 pounds application fee.  However, if your Ex is Self Employed or works through his own Limited Company CMS may produce a figure that is much lower as they seem to struggle with Self Employed and Limited Company

    #8813 Report


    I’ having the same issue my ex is paying £75 a week and I asked for £100 a week as due to the calculated based on what he earns and having them twice a week that’ what I should get but he doesnt agree. We have now sold our house so because he is giving me half of the profit he thinks that’ it now because that should set me up?! Though I can’ work full hours because I have the children 5 days a week so I can only manage 16 hours a week! Does anyone have advise on this?

    #8815 Report



    I’m in a similar position and called the CMS last week. My (soon to be ex) husband had used the online calculator and obviously it’s only as good as the information you put in. If you know what he’s earning, then call the CMS ON 0800 171 2345 and they can do a proper calculation for you and send it out in a letter (which is free). If you get on reasonably well, you can then show it to your ex. If he doesn’t stump up then the CMS can enforce the amount that they have calculated for you. If you don’t know what he’s earning then the CMS should be able to find out via HMRC but they will then charge you to find out.

    Also, as others have said, check you’re getting all the benefits, council tax reductions etc you’re entitled to by going to citizens advice.


    #8825 Report


    To AJ

    CMS charge 20 pounds application fee.  Application can be made over the phone and the more information you have the better.  So maybe worth taking time to do some research/homework first.  Questions you will be asked about your Ex will be along the lines:

    Full name

    Date of Birth

    Where they work

    What is their National Insurance Number

    What they earn.  If you don’t know they can trace through the National Insurance Number

    How many nights per week children stay with Ex.


    Good luck



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