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Child Support Payments: Your Entitlement

Author: Anna Martin - Updated: 28 August 2015 | commentsComment
 
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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[Add a Comment]
My son is 5 and his dad paid reg maintenance through csa but he pays direct to myself ..how can I keep eye out on his earning n if he paying right money hr pulled few stunts before in past n although he pays Wkly when he has pur son for a wks holiday is the maintenance for tht WK stop thanks
flo - 28-Aug-15 @ 7:56 PM
Kay - Your Question:
My son is almost 12 yrs of age and my ex partner pays me 17.50 pw. This is becoming an issue and he refuses to help out even tho he's in full time work. He's payed this amount since we separated when our child was 6 months old. Would I be entitled to more or is this arrangement the best I will get? Only asking as things are becoming a struggle. Would be great fun for any advise.

Our Response:
Is this a family-based arrangement or an agency one? If it is a family-based arrangement, then payment is worked out between yourselves, if you are arranging it through the CMS/CSA, then your case should be reviewed annually. Please see the child maintenance calculator, link here which should tell you how much you should be receiving. I hope this helps.
ChildSupportLaws - 28-Aug-15 @ 2:23 PM
sarah - Your Question:
Will I be able to get maintenance for my 2 boys aged 12 and 9 they have different dads but neither have ever paid anything or is it too late to claim

Our Response:
Yes, you will be able to claim. You can find out more information via the CMS Child Maintenance Options website here. I hope this helps.
ChildSupportLaws - 28-Aug-15 @ 10:32 AM
My son is almost 12 yrs of age and my ex partner pays me 17.50 pw. This is becoming an issue and he refuses to help out even tho he's in full time work. He's payed this amount since we separated when our child was 6 months old. Would I be entitled to more or is this arrangement the best I will get? Only asking as things are becoming a struggle. Would be great fun for any advise.
Kay - 27-Aug-15 @ 7:34 PM
Will i be able to get maintenance for my 2 boys aged 12 and 9 they have different dads but neither have ever paid anything or is it too late to claim
sarah - 27-Aug-15 @ 9:41 AM
My ex and i have been apart 9 years. In the past he has always been quite good contributing but last year he decided to walk out of his job. Since then he has been buying and selling on ebay and car boots etc, he hasnt been paying a penny for our 2 children since he quit his job. How could i get some child support? Im pretty sure he wont be paying tax or national insurance and i have no idea of his exact address (this changes between his current partners and his brother). Is there anything i can do? Thanks
Mamasama - 20-Aug-15 @ 8:18 PM
LadyLoves - Your Question:
Questions My ex lives in his own 1.5 million pound houseEarns 5-7thousand a month self employedWe have one child I live with my mother Our baby I have a small income of £1250. A month. We weren't married Would I be entitled to anything

Our Response:
Yes, you would be entitled to child support regardless of whether you were married or not. Please see the Child Maintenance Options site here for more information.
ChildSupportLaws - 20-Aug-15 @ 12:15 PM
Questions My ex lives in his own 1.5 million pound house Earns 5-7thousand a month self employed We have one child I live with my mother Our baby I have a small income of £1250. A month. We weren't married Would I be entitled to anything
LadyLoves - 19-Aug-15 @ 12:00 PM
Tank- Your Question:
Hi I'm separated from my only child's mother, I have my daughter Monday to Friday including over night and Saturday day time my ex has my daughter Saturday night and Sunday daytime, my ex works day times but part time, she claims child benefit and child tax, she states that she is entitled to the benefit as she the child's mam. Who should be claiming what? And do I pay her maintenance even though the child lives with me? Please help as I'm close to going to court to get this sorted. Many thanks

Our Response:
I can't advise here as it is usually a situation arranged between the two parents. If your ex is claiming benefits and your daughter is not living with her, then theoretically you will more entitled to claim. However, I can't predict what the courts may decide.
ChildSupportLaws - 13-Aug-15 @ 12:20 PM
I am separated from my wife, and look after our son and my step daughter. My wife has never contributed financially, hardly sees the children (her choice), and they never stay with her. Can I claim child maintenance for my step daughter even though I am not her biological parent, and do not have any legal parental responsibility for her? To complicate matters, her mother re-entered the UK from Malawi with a new name so technically her mother is not in the UK and is not the woman I married. Alternatively is it possible to claim child maintenance from someone who has been given guardianship of a child? Her maternal aunt became her guardian in Malawi (though she also lives in the UK) but it is me who looks after the child my step daughter. So any advice on the process to get child maintenance, and how it would work in this situation would be much appreciated.
Andy - 11-Aug-15 @ 7:22 PM
Hi I'm separated from my only child's mother, I have my daughterMonday to Friday including over night and Saturday day time my ex has my daughter Saturday night and Sunday daytime, my ex works day times but part time, she claims child benefit and child tax, she states that she is entitled to the benefit as she the child's mam. Who should be claiming what? And do I pay her maintenance even though the child lives with me? Please help as I'm close to going to court to get this sorted. Many thanks
Tank - 11-Aug-15 @ 11:00 AM
My ex is refusing to give me the agreed maintenance amount for the week he took our two children on holiday, this was never agreed beforehand or in our mediation agreement when contact & holiday & maintenance amount was agreed. I always thought maintenance was an agreed amount payed monthly? I didn't realise he can just reduce it when it suits him?
Hetty - 26-Jul-15 @ 4:53 PM
Hi I have a 3yr old with my ex partner he has 4 kids to previous marriage which he has paid child maintenance for from they parted! We always had mutual agreement were by he pays me maintenance for our child and has regular contact/overnites basically whenever he wants which has been gud until now? He still has all contact but mutual payments have stopped. I wish to go thru CSA but not sure of my rights or worth my hassle as he already pays for his other 4 kids to his ex wife? Please advise on my entitlements !
buddysmum - 26-Jul-15 @ 12:10 AM
Hi my Son is 14 and has behavioural problems. His dad does not hardly ever see him or pay for anything. Never has. I think it's disgusting he is signed off sick. Literally I can not manage financially and think even if it's a small contribution they should be liable for there children even if they do not bother to see them D
jenney - 23-Jul-15 @ 7:23 PM
My son is 15 and I have paid maintenance via private agreement to his mother since he was 3. He is attending college residentially in Sept (2 years 7 days a week) and I will be paying his accommodation fees. I will also be paying money into his account for food. His mother is insisting that she is due maintenance even though he is not living there, that cannot be right surely?
Nick - 18-Jul-15 @ 3:39 PM
@Gemiez - a two week holiday would not be enough time when spread across the year to warrant a variation in payments through the CSA. However, if it is a family-based arrangement and he is caring and providing for the children on a day-to-day basis, as you do throughout the year, then it is up to you whether you give him the concession and relax the payments for the period.
ChildSupportLaws - 14-Jul-15 @ 2:20 PM
hi there I'm now 28 my parents split when i was born. a court order of some kind was set up and he was ordered to pay maintenance, yet my mom said she never received a penny he said it was paid into an account in my birth name, as not long after they spliy my name was changed through depole. he is named on my birth certificate. he hasn't had contact since i was about 1 i no where he lives ect. i just want to no how i can go about finding this mystery account and whether he did pay or not and if its sitting in an account waiting for me. can anyone help?
kelcie - 12-Jul-15 @ 8:56 PM
If my child stays with the father for a week should I then give him money for my child as he says I shouldn't have the Csa for that week if he has my child
Gemiez - 11-Jul-15 @ 10:03 PM
Return from the U.S. After my relationship ended with child's father, we were not married. My son was 2 at the time. He is now 14 and just wanted to find out how I would obtain sole custody of him, his father has no contact with him as he is in the U.S. And makes no attempt to be, in his life, how do I get sole custody
Tt1976 - 9-Jul-15 @ 9:58 PM
@Hey Jude - I have included a CAB link here which will help you see whether you are eligible. It is unlikely that the courts would take your daughter from you and transfer residency to your ex, if he has had limited contact. The courts will always opt for what is in the childrens' interests and that means consistency and stability which you offer.
ChildSupportLaws - 9-Jul-15 @ 12:11 PM
Ok, so need some advice on child custody (in Scotland). I broke up with my daughters (x2) father more than 8 years ago. We were never married and the children have always stayed with me permanently, with ocassional visits/ overnight stays with their father whenever he decided he was free. It has never really been amicable. Our daughters are 10 and 16. He has now decided he wants to go to court for joint custody of our 10 yr old. Initially he was paying money into my account, but this stopped. Then CSA found him and the money 'officially' resumed. About 4-5 months ago, the child support money stopped again, due to him losing his job, so I've been trying to manage on my own, despite only working 2 days a week. Do you think I'd be legible for Legal Aid? Do you think he has a leg to stand on? This will be a huge upheavel for our youngest daughter, and undeniably it will cause distress.I'm extremely concerned about the whole situation and how this will affect our daughter.
Hey Jude - 6-Jul-15 @ 4:35 PM
@Archie222 - yes, dependent upon her circumstances and whether she is working etc, if your son comes to live with you and he is studying at not higher than A-level equivalent, for at least 12 hours a week, then his maintenance payments should continue until he finishes the course. Please see link for how child maintenance is worked out here. I hope this helps.
ChildSupportLaws - 6-Jul-15 @ 12:29 PM
My only child (16 year old) is starting colledge.When this happens, he wants to move in with me his father. He lived at his mums after our separation for the last 10 years. I have paid maintenence throughout. His mother is remarried with younger son ( to the new husband)) she works part time. Can i claim maintenance from her now. She claims that as i will get child benefits for him im not entitled.
Archie222 - 3-Jul-15 @ 5:08 PM
@M477 - You cannot reduce your rate of child support, as every parent is liable to support their child regardless. However, you can ask the courts to trace your child in order that you can apply to regain contact/access. You will need a C4 court form, which is an application for an order for disclosure of a child's whereabouts. You would also need to apply for a contact order at the same time. I hope this helps.
ChildSupportLaws - 11-Jun-15 @ 10:45 AM
My wife has ran off with my one year old daughter and wont tell anyone where she is. Shewont even let me see her (its been 2 and a half months now). If she doesnt let me see my daughter do I still have to pay child maintenance, can I apply for a reduced rate ? Why would it be that she can make it so I cannot see her, but still be made to pay these rates ? I have a letter from social services detailing my contact with them wanting to see my daughter and that there is no reason for me not to see my daughter other than her not wanting me to see her!
M477 - 9-Jun-15 @ 12:09 PM
@a1 - I'm afraid you cannot claim. It would have been down to your mother to do this.
ChildSupportLaws - 29-May-15 @ 12:33 PM
Hello. I'm after a bit of advice... I'm 21 and just finishing off my degree in Business. My mother and father seperated when I was around 5/6. I rarely saw my father from around the age of 7/8 and saw him a couple of years ago after his fathers (my grandfather) passing after about 8 years. My father has never paid anything towards me - not even money in a card for birthday/christmas or child maintenance to my mother. I would like to know if I could go about claiming anything back from him for the years he hasn't supported me financially. As well as not supporting me financially, he has spoken to me a handful of times in the past ten years and at his fathers funeral basically ignored me. I want to know if I can get anything from my absent father.
a1 - 26-May-15 @ 10:26 PM
@Nina123 - You would really have to speak to the CSA. However, if she went to live with her dad, then you may have to pay the CSA directly to him and you would then obviously cease paying for her daily welfare and care, unless of course you still wanted to continue to pay for certain things. Alternatively, you could work out a family-based agreement between you and your ex, if that would work better.
ChildSupportLaws - 26-May-15 @ 10:02 AM
My youngest child (17) has decided she wants to live full time with her dad, I still get csa money as she is a full time student. I pay for her phone, bus pass, dinner money and the majority of her clothing. I can barely afford this with the money I get through her dad. How would it work, would I need to pay her dad or would he continue to pay me since I pay all her bills? She is still currently staying with me until everything is sorted.
Nina123 - 23-May-15 @ 3:27 AM
I am a dual citizen of the UK and Egypt. My wife is Austrian. Our 8 year old son has 3 passports; Austria, British, and Egyptian. Although the child was born is Vienna, we only actually moved to Vienna when he reached 15 months. Prior to that we had lived in Dubai and Cairo. In the last 7 years there had been a strong of events taking place that reflect the mother's incompetence as a parent. I would add selfishness to that. I am the prime caretaker of the child and we still all live together (legally married) however she is seeing someone else. Being an interfaith marriage, we had agreed prior to marriage that the children would be raised as Muslims. I am a totally tolerant person and respect religious diversity. His mother however keeps telling him you can't tell your Austrian friends you're Muslim because they don't like Muslims over here. Note that she barely agreed to him taking up Islamic religions classes at School (in Austria). A few months ago the boy came up to me with his mother's mobile phone and told me blaaaaaa look at these disgusting photos. Basically these were a few photos of his naked mother masturbating and some random guy in a similar position. A couple of weeks ago my son told me that his mother took him on her lap and let him drive for a couple of minutes. I confronted her about both incidents and her response is that: what's wrong with that?! I currently don't have a stable job in Austria and thus if I'm lucky with an unbiased judge, it would still be difficult for them to grant me custody under the circumstances. I can only guarantee accommodation and private schooling fees in Egypt via my family if I return there with my child. Please also note that I am the one looking after the child: waking up, dressing, breakfasts, lunch boxes, school drop off, hygiene, youname it! His mother works less than 18 hours a week and doesn't pay taxes - so it's not like she's a super busy career person. She skips at least a couple of nights every week and even when she is home she would rather take the kid to have a cookie or doughnut at McDonalds for breakfast so she can have her coffee, rather than making him (or buying him) a normal healthy nutritious meal. I am so frustrated with this situation and I am not thinking about the well-being of a child still under development. I am also thinking about being in a place where I am more likely to be able to support myself and have family around me to support me with this journey. Lawyers have advised me that leaving the EU with the child would be the only solution to remove my child from this environment without legal intervention, which in the case of Austria tends to favour the citizen's side especially the mother. Any ideas?
taayka - 19-May-15 @ 4:01 PM
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