Child Support (Management of Payment and Arrears) Regulations 2009
April 26, 2012
My husband passed away at the age of 49 in July last year. He left behind myself, 2 children (24 and 23) as well as a granddaughter. He paid the due child maintenance to his ex wife through the CSA up until he left the UK to settle abroad in early 2000. From that point onward he sent money directly to his ex-wife and later to his children directly.
In September 2000 he was sent a letter by the CSA to advise him that the case was closed. He never heard from the CSA again in his lifetime.
He continued to support his children, even to the point of flying his son out to Dubai to live with us when he was thrown out of his home by his mother at the age of 16. He continued to support his daughter, when she left her home at the age of 16 as she was told by her mother that after the age of 16 her care had ended. I will not add to the list of incidents, which made the life of children miserable during their childhood.
We returned to the UK in August 2010 and my husband was diagnosed with terminal cancer in early 2011, with a diagnosis of months to live. He had the time to put his affairs in order and appointed myself as the executor of his last will. He provided me with all the details, which were required to deal with his estate.
Following my husband’s death I dealt with the estate and the probate in an appropriate way, appointed a solicitor and was granted probate in September 2011. All debts were paid and I tried to re-build my now empty life.
In November 2011 my solicitor received a letter from the CSA claiming a substantial amount of money in child maintenance arrears. At the same time the CSA informed my husband’s ex wife that she was due a substantial sum of money.
Since then I have tried to prove to the CSA that my husband continued his child maintenance payments directly, for a number of years after leaving the UK. The payments were made in form of cheques from early 2000 onwards, and bank records as to the account the funds were credited to, are not available anymore. The only person, who would be able to verify the receipt of funds would be my husband’s ex wife. Therefore I requested the CSA to assist by contacting my husband’s ex wife to substantiate the claim.
This however is being refused by the CSA and I keep receiving the same standard letter accusing me of maladministration of the estate. I have requested copies of correspondence sent to my late husband, but this is being refused.
How could there have been maladministration of the estate, when there was no contact or claim made in more than 10 years? When the case was closed in September 2000? I will now seek legal advice and ask my legal adviser to make this contact to my husband’s ex wife to prove the payments.
At no time has the CSA even expressed their condolences, or treated me with any respect following my loss. I am being made to feel like a criminal, with the threat of court proceedings hanging over me in a more than difficult time. Since the estate was distributed to the debtors prior to the claim of the CSA, I am now facing financial hardship if my husband’s ex wife is untruthful about the payments she received over a number of years.
I am wondering how many grieving widows will be put through this ordeal by the CSA. Some may not even be aware of any prior dealings with the CSA, cases having been closed and never mentioned to the new family when a new life was started. How can the government support a law which tarnishes the memory of loved ones and causes widows further grief and anguish at an extremely difficult time?
Last but not least, I wonder what would have happened if my husband and myself would have passed away at the same time. My stepdaughter is the sole beneficiary of both our wills – would the CSA now be contacting her? Would she be forced to pay her mother for her “childcare” when she has just lost her father?
Although I fully support the function of the Child Support Agency, and agree that fathers should support their children, the Child Support (Management of Payment and Arrears) Regulations 2009 is a disgraceful way to obtain monies from the deceased after their death.