I just want a correct and fair decision
January 22, 2013
Won’t go into detail here as I will spend lots of time writing, it’ll be potentially laborious to read, and I might run out of things to say.
– Two children
– Both parents live just 5 mins from each other
– 50/50 Shared Residence Order (in a 2 year complete cycle, it’s impossible to differentiate as everything, even down to school holidays, has been split/made cyclic)
– Both children live with one parent at a time (i.e. the children never get split)
– Child Benefit cannot be split, so the Child Benefit people simply actioned that in cases of even numbers of children (e.g. 2 as with us) one parent gets one child benefit, the other parent gets the other.
– Both parents are employable – and both of us drift into and out of work (welcome to Eurocrisis, but that’s another story…)
– She’s polish / polish passport, he’s english / british passport
– invoked the case against her, triggering her to retaliate and raise a counter-case against him; complaints to the CSA were met with stupidity. “You’re welcome to drop your case” regardless of the explanation “But they either both have to be dropped, or they both have to be running”
– Despite there being two children: two separate case files were raised, both went to different parts of the country (Hastings and Bristol from memory) – his case was lost, hers went ahead. Therefore, this was when unfairness crept into the system.
– 1-2 years of frustrating phone calls (contributing to him eventually losing his job) explaining the same thing over and over again to a new person every time, and still they want to say “How many nights a week does child X stay at yours” – they just didn’t get it, despite seeing the Shared Residence Order.
– 1-2 years later, they finally got it.
– What should happen is he should pay her, she should pay him. Net difference meets in the middle.
– Eurocrisis, etc, has required both parents to be in touch with the CSA frequently to advise of changes of circumstance.
– that last point shouldn’t be a problem, but whereas he wants to be upfront, she doesn’t and there’s no evidence that they are treating us both equally: there appears to be a blanket discrimination against men – i.e. they’re happy to come after me for money, but appear to place a lower priority on her for money.
– talking to them on the phone is like they deliberately employ the most unintelligence people in the UK: those that want to work but can’t find any other work so the CSA sweep them up. Their people “just don’t get it”
– Even after 6 years of being in this Shared Residence Order and our personal circumstances are stable in terms of residence: the CSA continues to be an acute source of stress, distress, depression and is making me seriously think of sticking my fingers up at it all and emigrating: that’s not right.
One particular serious focal point of worry is it’s taken them a couple of years to get my self-employed earnings right: in the meantime, I’m taking both kids on holiday and otherwise spending money on them (they both live with me 50% of the time, remember). Now I’m worried that they’ll come after me for backpayments, even though I’ve spent the money on the kids already. And I can’t rely on any intelligent decision coming out of the CSA office like “Both children live with both of you – therefore you’re both equally contributing to their upkeep, both parents want to have them full time, so there’s no need for us to get involved.”
In recent complaints I’ve made to them, where I explain that if they get it wrong they risk putting one of the two homes at risk (because mortgage payments will bounce) their response, in writing, was that there is no overriding policy that prevents children from going without. In other words, their own methods of working seem to ignore the very logo on their letter heads: “Child *SUPPORT* [underlined] Agency”
It’s all very upsetting – they’re interfering and getting it wrong so much.
And their mother uses the CSA as a source of income, as opposed to ensuring the children are looked after… (again, a complaint about this to the CSA and they respond explaining they can’t get involved in this)
Are you able to help with letter writing, etc, just to make sure a correct and fair decision can be made?