Home > Related Laws > Child Support Payments: Your Entitlement

Child Support Payments: Your Entitlement

By: Anna Martin - Updated: 24 Nov 2016 | comments*Discuss
 
Child Support Agency Csa Benefits

If you are the parent of a child, or children, and are raising them on your own you are entitled to claim child support payments from the non resident parent. This periodic maintenance payment may be agreed by private arrangement between both parents, but it may also be collected and handled by the Child Support Agency (CSA), in cases where there is a breakdown of communication between the adults.

Absent parents, who refuse to pay maintenance, can also be traced by the CSA and have an enforcement issued.

Are You Entitled To Claim?

Child support is a regular maintenance payment that is paid to parents who live with their children, by the parent who does not live in the same home. This periodic payment is made to assist the parent with care with the rising costs of raising a child. This payment can also be made to another family member or legal guardian if the child lives with them.

Child support is paid to a resident parent when a couple separate or divorce, or they have children but are not living together. The payment is made to provide financial support and to confirm responsibility for the welfare of the child. These payments also help to minimise the need for other forms of benefit.

How Is Maintenance Calculated?

The CSA work out the payable rate of maintenance by applying one of a number of rates to the absent parent’s income. Income means money earned from employment, tax credits or personal pension. Income tax and National Insurance is deducted, along with money that is paid into a pension plan. The remainder of the income is then evaluated and a basic, reduced, flat or nil rate is applied. The amount is adjusted according to how many children are involved in the maintenance application.

How Much Are You Entitled To?

Child support maintenance payments are calculated by the CSA, after assessing the income and living circumstances of the non resident parent. The amount of maintenance a parent with care will receive is calculated as being 15% of the non resident parent’s net income – for the first, or only child. The payable amount of maintenance increases to 20% of net income for two children, and to 25% for three. Children from subsequent families are treated in the same way.

Shared Parenting

If the child stays with the non resident parent for at least one night a week the amount of payable maintenance, given to the parent with care, is reduced accordingly. This situation is called Shared Care, and the amount of maintenance is reduced by one-seventh, for each night of the week that the child stays at the non resident parent’s home.

If care is divided equally between the parents the weekly amount of payable maintenance is halved in two, and reduced again by the required £7.

Flat Rate

If your maintenance payments are set at a flat rate, due to the non resident parent being on benefits or receiving allowance, shared care will mean that the maintenance payable to the parent with care is almost nothing.

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Hi, My Partners ex girlfriend is taking us to tribunal with accusations of deliberately trying to avoid paying child maintenance, due to his company being set up as a Limited company, which is simply not the case. Is there anywhere I can see previous tribunal hearings and outcomes to help us defend ourselves? Also from reading the above posts, my partner has shared parental responsibility for his child, the child spends almost half the year with us and we collect her form school on a alternate Tuesday/Thursday, take her home, complete homework, feed her etc. Would my partner be able to claim/receive half the child support/child tax credits she receives?
Amy - 24-Nov-16 @ 12:57 PM
My ex is going on holiday for 3 weeks to Australia without our child, he seems to think that while he's away he should not pay child maintenance as he won't be earning while he's on holiday. (He's self employed) However I think he should as if he can afford an expensive holiday he should still be paying for his child
Jce - 23-Nov-16 @ 10:43 PM
I pay my child maintenance every week for my daughter, is the mother entitled to any other money from me when it comes to uniforms and things like that whenever she gets a grant to help
Milo - 23-Nov-16 @ 4:26 PM
My new partner is just going through her divorce, and her ex has a job that pays very well. She has calculated what child maintenance she will get from his current salary, but I have heard that his job is changing and he will be basically getting double the amount of salary that he is on now in the near future, but this could be after the divorce is settled, will that new salary be taken into consideration for the child maintenance? If so would it then be better for them to go through the collect and pay scheme? Instead of arranging it themselves?
BigGuy81 - 14-Nov-16 @ 1:53 PM
Daddycool - Your Question:
Question. Can the mother of my children change an arrangement we have with visititation just to get more child maintanance from me?

Our Response:
I'm afraid it does happen. If your visiting rights are set out by a court order, then she cannot change the arrangements, please see link here. If there is no court order in place, but you think your ex has changed your access to suit her financially, then it may be worth seeking legal advice in order to take the matter to court.
ChildSupportLaws - 14-Nov-16 @ 11:35 AM
Question. Can the mother of my children change an arrangement we have with visititation just to get more child maintanance from me?
Daddycool - 13-Nov-16 @ 2:15 PM
Sarandsf - Your Question:
Hi, my partner has been paying for his now 18 year old daughter since he separated from his ex-wife. For the last 3 years and ongoing his daughter has lived with her grandparents but his ex-wife is still claiming as though her daughter lives with her. She does not contribute any money to the grandparents for her daughter's care. He has been told her claim is fraudulent but still he is being made to pay. He has challenged this but there has been no response about this from the agency dealing with this. Is there any advice you can give us?

Our Response:
If your partner thinks he is being treated unfairly, he would have to complain, please see link here.
ChildSupportLaws - 11-Nov-16 @ 2:32 PM
@BeckyD - some people either alternate- four days one week, three the next. If the ex is not earning or on a low wage, or considered the primary carer (the one who organises everything), then CMS will expect the father to still contribute. His CMS is reduced by the amount of nights he has his kid over. Paul.
PacMan - 11-Nov-16 @ 12:24 PM
I am working full time and receive tax credits for me my son and partner as he not working. My partnerex said wants more money going to go csa will I have to pay for partner son out my wage very confused at moment please help
Potter - 11-Nov-16 @ 4:58 AM
Hi. I am enquiring regards to tax credits and child maintanence. I have 2 daughters with my ex and have paid maintanence (not through csa) since we split. I now have another child with my new partner and we are just in the process of applying for tax credits. My new partner is not earning any income so the tax credits we will receive will be based on my wage. Will any tax credits we receive need to be taken into account to work out maintanence for my 2 daughters from my previous relationship. Very confused as the benefits my ex receives (or any resident parent) doesn't take into account the amount of maintanence recieved.
Roobarb78 - 11-Nov-16 @ 4:19 AM
Hi, my partner has been paying for his now 18 year old daughter since he separated from his ex-wife. For the last 3 years and ongoing his daughter has lived with her grandparents but his ex-wife is still claiming as though her daughter lives with her. She does not contribute any money to the grandparents for her daughter's care. He has been told her claim is fraudulent but still he is being made to pay. He has challenged this but there has been no response about this from the agency dealing with this. Is there any advice you can give us?
Sarandsf - 10-Nov-16 @ 8:32 PM
Hi, my partner has our step daughter 3 nights a week, but picks her up every day from school and her mum comes around 6 o'clock two nights in the week to pick her up, she then has her from Saturday afternoon Untill Monday morning. The 6 weeks holiday all on us infact every school holiday. Caff card was involved once over custody and even wrote in a court note to the judge the amount of time her father has her amounts to joint custody. Why do men who have there children 3 nights a week ( there's not 8 days in a bloody week) have to pay, there's no way custody can be halfed with only 7 days in a week? We pick her up feed her tea bath her and she gets handed over fully fed and washed to her mum who then has to do nothing!! But we pay her for the pleasure!! How is this fair on the fathers???
BeckyD - 10-Nov-16 @ 4:23 PM
Fred - Your Question:
Can I take my parent to court for lost maintanance years after she left me and my bro aged 10 then ? I am now an adult but have been making an effort travelling down having spent years trying to get to know them and they dont want to know I just have wasted so much time trying wondered if I could get any funds back this way for time wasted ?

Our Response:
The only person who can claim child maintenance is the primary carer against the non-resident parent i.e the mother can claim from the father. Children cannot claim from parents.
ChildSupportLaws - 10-Nov-16 @ 3:09 PM
Can i take my parent to court for lost maintanance years after she left me and my bro aged 10 then ? I am now an adult but have been making an effort travelling down having spent years trying to get to know them and they dont want to know i just have wasted so much time trying wondered if i could get any funds back this way for time wasted ?
Fred - 10-Nov-16 @ 8:48 AM
Hi me and my husband have shared contact with my husbands son (my step son). His mum was mentioned to pay us half his tax credits and child benifit which was stated in the court order. She never has for 5 years now but we have kept up the contact now she is trying to claim csa from us. But we provide for him already from food, to holidays he doesn't miss out on anything. Why do we have to pay her more money to care for him when we all ready provide for him when he is in our care. We wouldn't mind if we knew the money was going on him, but from the cloths he is wearing when we pick him up doesn't look like she as spent any money on him at all. I mean we still have to get his hair cut she hasn't done this once in the whole te we have had contact. Think the system is unfair really as we are supporting her twice
Lisanicky - 2-Nov-16 @ 7:27 PM
Susie- Your Question:
Hi, I have been searching everywhere for some guidance. Ive been told I can claim DLA for my son's illness. My partner pays maintenece through a CSA schedule, he pays the full amount as he does not have shared contact. My question is should he receive part of the DLA or can he ask for a reduction in the maintenence payments? He was already unhappy at the amount he was told to pay and know he has been asking friends if I have applied for it so I expect it to become something I have to answer soon. Many thanks for you help

Our Response:
DLA is paid directly to your child and not to you, therefore your ex's child maintenance payments shouldn't be reduced. However, much depends upon other circumstances which you have not disclosed. Therefore, you would really have to ring the CMS directly regarding your question.
ChildSupportLaws - 2-Nov-16 @ 10:53 AM
Hi, I have been searching everywhere for some guidance. Ive been told I can claim DLA for my son's illness. My partner pays maintenece through a CSA schedule, he pays the full amount as he does not have shared contact. My question is should he receive part of the DLA or can he ask for a reduction in the maintenence payments? He was already unhappy at the amount he was told to pay and know he has been asking friends if I have applied for it so I expect it to become something I have to answer soon. Many thanks for you help
Susie - 1-Nov-16 @ 12:36 PM
Morgs - Your Question:
Hi my x partner has taken my son on from the age of 3 months old we split last year. And he still has my son everyother weekend but I dont no wether I can claim csa of my x for my son Can anyone help.

Our Response:
If you are the main carer of your child, then you will be entitled to claim child maintenance from the father, please see link here for more information.
ChildSupportLaws - 24-Oct-16 @ 12:07 PM
Angry Mum - Your Question:
Hi, my daughters father doesn't support her. He has given me the odd 20. but that's about it. I have tried to go through the CSA before but he is working illegally so doesn't pay the tax man either!! I know full well he earns a lot of money as he works as a mechanic & he also lives with his parents and pays no bills, board etc!! Is there anything I can do? It pains me so much when us normal people would go without when it comes to ensuring our children get what they need! :(

Our Response:
Child maintenance is paid via earnings, so when the paying person is not declaring their wages to the Inland Revenue then it is very difficult to prove, and for the CMS to extract money from that person if no tax has been paid. Your only recourse would be to seek legal advice about taking the matter to court. But this is costly and almost impossible to prove if he is being paid in cash and money is not going through a bank account. I'm afraid it is a loophole in the system that your ex is taking a risk being caught and prosecuted, but a loophole it is.
ChildSupportLaws - 24-Oct-16 @ 10:17 AM
Hi, my daughters father doesn't support her. He has given me the odd 20.. but that's about it. I have tried to go through the CSA before but he is working illegally so doesn't pay the tax man either!! I know full well he earns a lot of money as he works as a mechanic & he also lives with his parents and pays no bills, board etc!! Is there anything I can do? It pains me so much when us normal people would go without when it comes to ensuring our children get what they need! :(
Angry Mum - 23-Oct-16 @ 1:14 AM
Hi my x partner has taken my son on from the age of 3 months old we split last year. And he still has my son everyother weekend but i dont no wether i can claim csa of my x for my son Can anyone help.
Morgs - 21-Oct-16 @ 2:17 PM
jenlee - Your Question:
Hi, I am divorced and my ex has been paying me private child support. He stopped when my son started working full time. My son is now 21 and a full time student. He lives alone, is he eligible for child support?

Our Response:
No. Every parent has the basic responsibility to provide for their child up until the age of 16, when they are legally allowed to leave school and get a job. After this age, it depends what your child chooses to do. If they continue in full-time non-advanced education, not higher than A-level equivalent, for at least 12 hours a week, then maintenance payments will continue until the child finishes the course or until they turn 20, whichever comes first. If you live in Scotland the child can appeal directly to the parent for educational support, but this does not apply in England where he is considered an independent adult.
ChildSupportLaws - 14-Oct-16 @ 11:18 AM
Hi, I am divorced and my ex has been paying me private child support. He stopped when my son started working full time. My son is now 21 and a full time student. He lives alone, is he eligible for child support?
jenlee - 13-Oct-16 @ 4:17 PM
Mel- Your Question:
I'm now 22 and I'm seeking answers if I am eligible to get backdated child maintenance from an absent mother who did not pay me anything in anyway shape or form, with that be; clothes, food, Xmas gifts and or birthday gifts, and pocket money. My dad has brought me up since I was born but went to live with my mom but went back to my dad after a year and my dad has brought me up since then. I'm also thinking what's the point in doing this as I've had a great life without her but on the other hand, don't I deserve it

Our Response:
You would not be eligible to claim child maintenance, as children are not eligible to claim directly from parents. Your father could only claim if he has previously made a claim to the CSA and your mother never paid. He can't put in a fresh claim now (having never claimed before).
ChildSupportLaws - 13-Oct-16 @ 12:28 PM
I'm now 22 and I'm seeking answers if I am eligible to get backdated child maintenance from an absent mother who did not pay me anything in anyway shape or form, with that be; clothes, food, Xmas gifts and or birthday gifts, and pocket money. My dad has brought me up since I was born but went to live with my mom but went back to my dad after a year and my dad has brought me up since then. I'm also thinking what's the point in doing this as I've had a great life without her but on the other hand, don't I deserve it
Mel - 12-Oct-16 @ 6:39 PM
I have two boys one 7 and the other nearly 4 from two different dads my eldest son goes to his dad's wed Thurs and then every other fri night to sleep depending on who's weekend it is to have him so that's 5 nights sleep one week and 2 nights sleep over the next week I don't get a penny from his dad even though I pick son up from school every day and we have tea every night mon-fri or because his dad doesnt finish work until 18:00 then comes and gets him from my house. His dad gets the child tax credits and family allowance too. My other sons father gets him to sleep over sat night pick up is 11am sat then brings him home Sunday 5pm and I get £38 a week off him and the tax credits are in my name not his. So really my question is I've no idea how much I could be getting I don't know what the boys dads incomes are they both work full time have pretty good jobs I've tried guess work on the calculator on this link but it's hard to work out with guess figures. I've never gone legal it scares me but then I do think things are getting really expensive and I could do with some help. Thanks
Cat - 8-Oct-16 @ 4:34 AM
I have a daughter. Her father has a child to someone else and there's a month between both babies, I recieve less maintenance than she does? We're both single parents why is she getting more than I am?
Twright98 - 3-Oct-16 @ 10:43 PM
My ex is going on holiday and I'm having my 4 children whilst she goes which I'm really looking forward to. Should I still be paying full maintenance for that fortnight if I'm having them for more then half of it?
Simon - 3-Oct-16 @ 4:43 PM
My ex is living with his partner and there 2 children, i have a son with my ex who i claim maintenance for, so i get less money my ex's partner claims maintenance for her 2 children with my ex from her parents address even tho she lives with my ex is this allowed?
tidy - 27-Sep-16 @ 1:21 PM
Ikceb - Your Question:
I have proof that my ex partner is currently receiving a regular wage for different sources of work, he is currently only paying the minimum payment as he has told cms that he is on benefits. What should I do?

Our Response:
If this wage is going through HMRC, then the CMS will be aware of this. If you can prove where he is working, then you can contact the CMS with this information. However, if his is not declaring these wages and is working illegally, then there is little you can do unless you can prove he is earning.
ChildSupportLaws - 27-Sep-16 @ 11:08 AM
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