What Child Maintenance Covers

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  • #64675 Report

    watermelon123
    Participant

    Dear all,
    My girls father does pay child maintenance, we came an informal agreement and have been separated a while. He thinks that should cover all their football and club costs, pocket money and school lunches. Since he had a second child he has withdrawn the majority of his contribution to these things. I’m saying maintenance is for living costs and we have to split the extras. He does pay towards coats, shoes. I know clubs and pocket money are more ‘luxury’ – but any ideas where I stand with this ?
    thank you

    Carrie

    #64677 Report

    *deleted user*
    Participant

    You probably don’t want to post the exact amount, understandably.

    The amount I got never covered any clubs, football or school lunches. Until the past three years I could never afford to give my DD any pocket money. she getes an allowance now.

    For me, the question would be a dependence issue. I don’t know how you solve this, other than scaling back your budget further or taking on better paid work. Someone paying for something and then withdrawing it because their circumstances change is very hard and I wouldn’t want to be in that position.

    Very sorry you are experiencing this. Costs of clubs etc do vary across the country. I think I’m right in thinking in less well off areas clubs are often low cost or free? Free school meals?

    #64678 Report

    *deleted user*
    Participant

    This is also why people go to the CMA. You get  a regulated amount. Though there can be problems with that as other posters will tell you.

    #64680 Report

    watermelon123
    Participant

    Ah thank you both , yes I suspected this was never going to be clear cut. He absolutely resents paying me anything as he does have the kids 3 nights a week. I live alone, he has a very well off partner so household income wise they are well ahead of me. We have managed to not argue too much to date. I’m on a temporary promotion so I guess I’ll face it again when that changes.

    #64681 Report

    *deleted user*
    Participant

    I think that some people need to bear in mind that if you have a child you have a responsibility to support them, emotionally and financially. So he actually has no right to feel ‘resentful’ about anything. Sounds like you are organising and paying for just about everything. In addition to this, unexpected expenses crop up anyway with kids. I think I would apply to CMA. anyway. At least then you won’t have to deal with his selfish moods or be the brunt of them. If he doesn’t  pay you will be no worse off but the difference is that it would be the CMA’s responsiblity to chase it.

    #64682 Report

    watermelon123
    Participant

    Could the CMA help with this, I suspect they will say he is paying the right amount per month maintenance but the argument is what this covers ?

    #64683 Report

    *deleted user*
    Participant

    Tend to think what it is supposed to cover is a red herring of an argument on his part, I’m afraid.

    Money goes to the parent to set priorities accordingly, surely? He is not in charge of her budget, neither should he be!

    #64696 Report

    Lulublue
    Participant

    CMS is a set amount depending on the ex’s earnings, how often he sees the children and it covers every expense that comes with having a child…. Including uniform, living costs and extra activities such as clubs.
    I would seriously consider if cms is the right way to go, check out the calculator which you can find online. You could actually be better of with your private agreement.
    I started a claim with cms last April and haven’t seen a penny! They do not chase payments, the do not have the residential parent in mind at all!
    after an aggressive attack by weary warrior a few days ago, I just wanted to post and give you an honest account of cms, as I feel weary warrior has an opinion on everything even if they have experience in the matter x

    #64697 Report

    watermelon123
    Participant

    Thank you lulu blue, your message is kind of what I was thinking. I don’t want additional stress and it doesn’t look clear cut. Either way no doubt I’ll get told to cut the clubs if I can’t afford it! Just frustrating and I’m also told to be pleased he pays anything at all !

    #64704 Report

    *deleted user*
    Participant

    Thanks for that criticism Lulu blu! As far as I am aware assertive women also have freedom of speech rights on chat boards! And I do have lots of experiences, good and bad, which in the main are well informed. And no, I don’t think I’m right about everything all the time!

    Yes, OP you might be better off keeping with your informal arrangement but it is not accurate to say that CMS covers all expenses although some may expect it to.

    You will see from the website that there are two options there two tier system. They first suggest an amount and then ask for it and suggest it to ex on a voluntary basis. if payments are not met they will chase up, but either way the service will cost you a percentage of what you get. Which is the criticism of the CMS anyway. You can phone up they are quite friendly and will explain it to you if you need it.

    The amounts that are calculated with the calculator and in practice in my view does’nt really cover fifty per cent of what children of different ages need on a daily basis (and mine is sixteen so I’ve been through every stage of this and we are by no means buying luxuries!). Perhaps with much higher earners it might do but there are still issues about what the other party might disclose as their income (i.e not being honest about it) which I have experienced too. There is also the point about costs in general for single parents going up for households heating etc, home schooling costs with covid etc which haven’t even been spoken about at all much. If you have experienced domestic abuse or coervice control with financial abuse (which I have) then you may wish to have as little contact as possible with ex so for some who have, this is why they prefer that route.

    It is a difficult situation to be in, ideal would be if ex listened when you say you struggling to cover expenses – and offered (even temporary) additional help for these reasons. We are still in a pandemic after all and other groups of vulnerable people have had grants, tax breaks, furlough etc..don’t know about you but with one in four teachers off with covid right now home schooling again at least part time is never far away is it?

    It really depends on the level of unpleasantness there from ex. If it is a constant battle then it may not be worth it at all. Options are to put a request in anyway to CMA and he can always pay more than they advise if he is understanding and supportive. The other way round i.e brings it’s own difficulties as you will be constantly asking. Unpleasant to say the least. Hope you find a way through it.

    Given what kids have been through, i.e so much time without clubs/lockdowns etc I would do my best to ensure that resident parent could afford them, for the sake of my child’s mental health. But that is not the way some people think, unfortunately.

    ww

     

    #64765 Report

    steve3334
    Participant

    think it all depends if you can keep an amicable arrangement with ex. i signed myself up to CMS as a non-resident paying parent. simply because I hate the stress and arguments surrounding money. it wasn’t just the ex, her family trying to run the show. demanding back-dated payments and all sorts lol. all this while I was in middle of divorce/family court hearings. soon as I signed up to CMS, all those silly money fights vanished overnight.

    #64800 Report

    Sarafrgsn85
    Participant

    We used the cms calculator and he sends that every month. Then I asked if they could join a couple of clubs. He agreed to pay half of those and includes it in the payment. He also pays half of any camps etc if he can afford to.

    he also pays Netflix, their mobile bills and Xbox game pass.

    I then cover everything else; pocket money, clothes, days out, school expenses, food, housing, heating etc

Viewing 12 posts - 1 through 12 (of 12 total)

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