CSA Help

CSA considers my train fair to work as disposable income

My wife ditched me last April for another man.

I have three kids, aged between eight and twelve, who I love dearly and will gladly pay child maintenance for.

But I live in Kent and hold down a job in London. My train fare of £4,000 a year is considered to be disposeable income and has not been taken into account in my payment assessment thingy.

This means that I have no disposeable income at all. Everything is going on bills and my CSA maintenance payments of nearly £500 per month. I can’t actually afford to buy food and am having to go to a food bank, even though I’m on a pretty good salary.

CSA are refusing to acknowledge cost of my season ticket as an overhead. I work in customer services, so am not in a position to work from home. They’re refusing to look into my case and keep saying ‘travel to work costs’ are part of my disposeable income, even though I work 45 miles away, don’t drive, have no other form of transport at my disposal.

Have been to citizen’s advice and they couldn’t advise me on what to do.

Please help.

52 thoughts on “CSA considers my train fair to work as disposable income

  1. is the £500 per month your regular maintenance or does this figure include an amount for outstanding arrears?

  2. In the good old days when sanity prevailed things like your travel to work costs were taken into account but some bright spark decided that tax dollars for the treasury were going begging and decided to change the rules. I think astral projection is now the acceptable form of travel for the purpose of an allowable csa calculation.

    Meantime check the comment from ‘alice’ just before mine, perhaps you can get a ‘variation’ somewhere?

  3. unfortunately a variation cannot be granted for NRP travel costs as the govt factored all living expenses into the current formula based (presumably) on an average – Leigh’s travel costs are higher than average so this is one of the situations where the ‘one size fits all’ legislation is not working

  4. the question regarding arrears was that if there are arrears being paid these may be re-negotiated and as such the total paid monthly would reduce – if there are no arrears and this is for RM only then this cannot be reduced, other things to be considered would be if the current calculation was correct as in is the income correct, are the relevant shared care or ROC allowance applied to the calculation (for any children living in the nrp’s household)

  5. It’s disgusting that your means to get to work in order to pay these vultures is used as well when calculating far as the csa is concerned…NRP’s have no outgoings,bills,mortgages ,debts ….nothing at all lol….oh and we don’t need to eat screwd on my car allowance cause I opted out of the company car scheme…so the csa have their claws in that as well….the money I’m paid to enable me to supply my own means of transport to get to work to pay the the vultures.its already taxed but they see it as disposable income just like your train fairs…as usual it’s a disgusting state of affairs and so unfair however Alice or anyone else tries to polish this turd called the law.they will argue that I didn’t have to buy a car just like a didn’t have to have a honeymoon….it was my choice….but you have proved that even if I had not brought a car and use the train lol…they still screw you…I rest my case.
    Don’t want any replies from the likes of you know who……this is just my opinion.

  6. @ Gonk – you make me laugh… you are straight to the point. You say what you mean and mean what you say and then you always add a wee quirk at the end of your comment!! 🙂 It’s great!

    I agree with all that you say and wonder if it could be and additional ‘variation’ that the CSA should consider!! essential travel expenses…. however, as you have just pointed out… they don’t consider bills, mortgage/rent or food as essential so we shouldn’t hold our breath wating for them to make a variation allowance for travel… 🙁

  7. For the benefit of any other’s reading this post – the reason that Leigh’s train fares are not taken as a deduction from his salary before the MC is calculated is that that everyone has some costs involved in getting themselves to their workplace, Leigh’s situation is such that he has taken employment some distance away from his home and as such he has accepted that the cost of travel from work to home will be higher than the average. When the Govt set the %age for CM they will have considered the basic living expenses and NRP will have – these I assume will have been worked out on national averages – Leigh’s travel costs are obviously higher than the average.

    In certain circumstances travel costs reimbursed by an employer to an NRP will be disregarded from an NRP’s salary – these will be where an NRP is in a job which means working in different locations and uses their own vehicle, trains, buses etc to travel between locations. Examples are such would be district nurses, construction site managers (unless they use a works van), floating managers for pubs. etc. In these instances the travel expenses will be shown as non-taxable and the CSA will confirm with the employer that these are wholly, exclusively and necessary to allow the NRP to do their job. The expenses will be based on a person having a ‘base’ (usually the office they are attached to) and the expenses will be paid for any travel costs incurred will be for journeys they are required to do in order to carry out their day to day job will be over and above the initial journey from home to base.

  8. @ Sally – as per the above reply the Govt have considered day to day living costs for NRP, mortgages/rents/utility bills etc are factored into the calculation, not on a case to case basis as they were on the original scheme but based on an average. The problem that Leigh has (and I have discussed this with Leigh on a different site so he knows I am not having a go at him) is that he his travel costs are higher than the average, he knew what his costs would be when he took the job.

  9. You see this is what’s sooooo wrong with this pic…..Alice ,have you…I mean the csa considered that maybe Leigh had no choice how far away that job is when he took it on ? Maybe he could not find any employment nearer to home …thus having little choice in the matter…but that means little to the csa . This is where there’s no flexibility with the csa…..You will pay this,,,it’s the law
    Tell me this Alice…..isn’t using a car or train wholly necessary and exclusively in order for a NRP to do their job ? That point is absolutely pointless unless you can either walk,cycle or sprout wings to get to work.As far as I’m concerned if the csa was fair…it would not use car allowance or train fairs in its calculations to asses cs regardless of how far that person had to travel and subject to them providing proof of that travel in the way of fuel receipts and train tickets..that’s called being fair and flexible….something that the csa is not capable of .
    And this is the last I will say in the matter as I don’t want this thread hijacked like a previous one.

  10. Hi Alice – I appreicate what you are saying but the point I am trying to make is that the formula is wrong and as a result there are thousands and thousand of people who are forced into situations they cannot get out of and as a result some of them have commited suicide!

    The same government who decided the calculation formula for CSA is the same government who decided that child benefit should be £20.30 for the first child £13.40 for every child thereafter per week – correct? this money is for the benefit of the child 24/7 but in reality the child does not spend 24/7 with one parent… but I don’t see the government dividing that amount by % time they the kids are with each parent and yet child maintenance is caluclated on that very basis…. deductions for overnight stays… and just out of curiousity, what is child benefit supposed to be spent on??

    I am a simple minded person and believe most other people are too… but the whole system is so complex that even the people implementing it are getting it wrong to the detriment of innocent PWC’s and NRPs (and their children!!).

    In my mind you have 2 parents, both have an income both have expenditure regardless of how much time either parent spend with the child. They both have rent/bills/food/essential travel…. so this should be considered for both parents before any deductions/payments are made. would that be so hard to do because, as you have said yourself a few times… this ‘one system fits all’ does not really fit all at all…..

  11. Alice

    The csa DO not consider bills or mortgage or everyday living cost When I was assessed….they DID NOT ask me at all about my outgoings….just slapped me with a DOE . How can they use an average to calculate what’s fair when everyone’s circumstances differ…I have 15% of my salary taken…after NI and tax…..NOT 15% of whats left after mortgage and council tax….and other essential living cost…again it’s unfair…one should be assessed on ones ability to pay and a fair amount taken from what’s left of his/her salary.
    OK…THAT’S MY FINAL COMMENT ON THIS…I have hijacked on the brain

  12. i’ll rephrase that before I get shot down in flames… the current government are aware of the formula for child benefit and allow it to continue and have set the CSA formula and let it continue… thus this government if wholly responsible for both!!

  13. aha ha ha ha @ Gonk… all your points are valid and i’m sure Leigh is learning a little bit more about the CSA and it’s ‘system’ as he reads through the comments here… it is about sharing our views!! 🙂

  14. The CSA and it’s way of treating everyone the same makes me think of a Communist state. So basically if your prepared to go and find a job, sit on a train for several hours a day to improve yourself you in the eyes of the CSA you are in the wrong. Alice your advice effectively translates into he should stay local to his town or village possibly with no job and then the CSA are happy. Do you see how very wrong this is ?

    Well we know what happened to every state that’s tried to have this type of control over individuals lives either they imploded, changed or everyone of any value left so it’s not going to last for ever just a shame it will blight a generation whilst it’s around.

  15. Disposable income is income spent on NON ESSENTIALS such as hobbies, interests, holidays, alcohol, cigarettes. (not that nasty NRPs are allowed to have any of these because we are feckless scum)

    Every human being has the right to shelter, food and warmth. So yes, our human rights are being discriminated against with these unjust tats of legislation by our high morality government.

    Getting to a place of work,…(which the same government says you must agree to travelling by public transport for 90mins each way in order to qualify for JSA btw) is NOT disposable income. Do not care what the STATUTE law says…or what Alice says, it is just another lil money extraction noose to be placed over your head by the CSA.

    Dammed if you do, dammed if you dont. Really feel for you OP because all of us are in same boat here….holes in the hull with not even a tin mug to try keep afloat

    I just picture these smug bastards being really pleased with themselves when they made this shit up.

    I have been offered a job, which is agency work so working 40hrs a week is unlikely, but based even on 30hrs, I am saddened because few taps on calculator says I will be short by £70 a week by the time CSA are finished with me. If my good but old car breaks down, then I am really screwed and will be slung back onto JSA. I live with no public transport whatsoever, and no means of moving either.

    If I went on to do nurse training, I bet they would find loopholes in that also, despite CSA saying students dont have to pay their demands. So trying to better myself in order to have some basic needs paid AND provide for my child, is not really going to happen.

    Break up families….great values from our benevolent dictators

  16. oops meant to say…*disposable income is income left over from paying essentials such as rent, food, etc that is spent on non essentials, such as hobbies, interests, holidays, alcohol, cigarettes.

    ….sorry… 🙂

  17. the use of car train or bus may be necessary for a person to get to their place of work – this would have been considered by the Govt (using national averages I presume) along with housing costs, utility costs, food, clothing etc when they set the %ages that can be taken from an NRP’s income for the appropriate amount of children the NRP is liable to pay maintenance for. It is not considered on an individual case per case basis on CS2 calculations as in CSA do not ask the individual how much they spend on pertrol/train fares, what their rent/mortgage is and how much they spend on food in Tesco per week. The same principle as how the govt decide how much is payable on benefits and pensions – they do not ask a person if they have a fuel efficient boiler and a well insulated home and set a weekly amount for heating, nor do they give a person who is living with a fuel hungry backboiler and no double glazing an extra £20 a week to cover the higher gas bill.

    Travel expenses (petrol or train fare ect) which are allowable as considered as wholly exclusively and necessary for a person to do their job will be where a person may need to travel between different locations throughout their working day – they will have a base but may be required to go to other locations as part of their job. Examples can be a support worker who’s base is the company office, they will have several clients who all live in different locations, in order to provide the required support the support worker will need to travel between the client’s homes, they may use public transport and submit their travel tickets weekly for reimbursement, or they may use their own private vehicle and submit a mileage claim weekly and be paid a set amount per mile for petrol and wear and tear on their vehicle.

    I fully accept that in the job market today jobs do not fall out of the sky, gone are the days that people can pick and chose what job they take, but equally when a person accepts a new job or home it is reasonable to assume that this person has considered the cost of travelling between home and workplace. I know that a person on benefits is expected to be prepared to apply for suitable vacancies within a certain travelling distance from their home – I can’t remember exactly what the distance is but something like a 20 mile radius springs to mind. I suspect that this was also considered a ‘fair distance’ for an NRP’s travel costs by the Govt when they set the CS2 formula.

    Bear in mind that CS2 was brought in to play in 2003 after the original CS1 scheme was considered to be flawed – CS1 required something like 102 pieces of info for an assessment to be done – it was very much case specific and many many issues were raised as to why it was unfair and overcomplicated – CS2 is perhaps an over-simplified system

  18. @ Alice….

    Alice states – “this would have been considered by the Govt (using national averages I presume) along with housing costs, utility costs, food, clothing etc when they set the %ages that can be taken from an NRP’s income for the appropriate amount of children the NRP is liable to pay maintenance for.”

    My response – national averages?? NATIONAL averages…. You presume?? You don’t know??? Again we have a “one rule fits all”… Regardless…

    Alice states – “The same principle as how the govt decide how much is payable on benefits and pensions – they do not ask a person if they have a fuel efficient boiler and a well insulated home and set a weekly amount for heating, nor do they give a person who is living with a fuel hungry backboiler and no double glazing an extra £20 a week to cover the higher gas bill.”

    My response – benefits and pensions are the ONLY source of income that people rely on to survive…. PWC already get working tax credits, child tax credits, child benefit and their salary…. CSA payments are additional source of income so you should’t even compair them!!!

    Alice states – “but equally when a person accepts a new job or home it is reasonable to assume that this person has considered the cost of travelling between home and workplace. I know that a person on benefits is expected to be prepared to apply for suitable vacancies within a certain travelling distance from their home”

    My response… (This is the point that my blood starts to boil)…. Our UK MPs claim expenses for SECOND homes because they live too far away from their work place!!! Expenses that are funded by us taxpayers!!! No matter how brainwashed you are, surely you must see the irony in all of this…..

  19. Unfortunately Alice, the national average of anything set by the government are woefully inadequate. If it was adequate, I would not have become so ill on JSA.

    Also, the OPs travel expenses are his travel expenses, not the national average. So they should be classed as so, and not partially taken into account. The national average size for women is a size 16, but we wouldnt say to a woman who is a size 20 “here, theres a size 16 skirt, its the national average so you will either have to squeeze into it or starve yourself to fit into it” This is the logic you are parroting from your government agency.

    What if the OP were to get car finance, in order to see his children and to travel to work. Would this be classes as disposable income?

    What if he were to lose his job from being unable to afford travel there or be unable to have a car to get there? Would the CSA look at their own backward rules and revise them?

  20. if the national average is done and dusted….why are MPs on so much money and claim so many expenses?

  21. I must also say alice…that I live in the sticks…no oil or gas, so yes I have a hungry back boiler on smokeless coal. I HAVE NO CHOICE of anything else. I have no money to move elsewhere. Even if I could, why should I when my coal bill is still cheaper than some peoples gas bill??

    Guess I am going to be in for a rough time come assessment….

  22. I sympathise completely with your situation. Maybe if you were allowed to offset your travel as part of your maintenance calculation, and actually have the money that YOU EARN, in YOUR pocket then you might be able to afford to live nearer to your work!?

    I am astounded that percentages are always mentioned by the CSA in these calculations…Consider this…i am personally in the 53 – 104 days ( something like that i stand to be corrected) per year bracket for looking after my 2 kids, when it comes to assessing discount on a full maintenance calculation. Well 53 days represents 14.25% of a normal year, and 104 days is around 28.5% of a year.
    Yet an NRP who has their children for say 82 days a year is only entitled to the same discount as someone who has their kids for 53 days even though they have looked after them for an extra MONTH of the year…..

    82 days is 22.4% of a year, it took me less than 5 seconds to work out! Discount against maintenance has got to include incurred employment expenses, incurred travel expenses to collect and return children and the discount bands used by the CSA to calculate maintenance should be narrowed

  23. @ Sally – yes I presume, no I do not know – I was not on the board or committee within the UK government in the run up to 2003 who came up with the formula so unfortunately I cannot quote dot for dot or penny for penny or word for word how the current legislation was derived.

    The points raised were that the CSA do will not consider the NRP’s individual travel costs – the answer was no, not on an individual basis – this is factored into the overall equation. I accept – as I have stated I accepted on other threads – that a 1 size fits all system will not fit every case perfectly – some benefit some are disadvantaged same as many other things in life.

    I have actually had interaction with Leigh outwith this site and various points specific to his case have been discussed, more detail has been provided and more detailed answers and suggestions have been made – Leigh knows his options and has been grateful for the info suggested, he can now consider his options and make his own choices and decisions. I therefore see no need for me to return to this thread which like many is digressing from the original post, the questions being asked now should be directed to the your local MPs who I am sure will do their best to explain what figures were used in deciding the CS2 formula and that they are prepared to do with the flaws in the set formula.

  24. Options, choices, decisions….

    Pay up til bankrupt, go on dole, become self employed, or face baliffs and/or jail seems to be the options and decisions nrp’s are faced with.

    As long as Leigh is grateful for advice. Though ever heard of Stockholm syndrome?

  25. @ Leigh – Hi, based on Alice’s reply to me, could I possibly ask you to come back onto this website and let us all know the outcome? It would be nice to know that what Alice has advised you to do has worked!!

    I’m sorry if I’ve taken over your threat but I read Alice’s advice and what she says is plausible at times, but I don’t see anyone coming back onto the site to thank her and let her know that her advice has fixed the problems they have had dealing with the CSA. We (I am an NRPP) have gone through hell with the CSA and none of the advice given worked because “rules are rules”… The 2 kids caught in the middle have missed out on a proper relationship with their father because of it….

    @ Alice – as I’ve said all along… You dictate what the CSA does/doesn’t do and explain what should/shouldn’t happen, you even manage to try and justify the CSA criteria (“equally when a person accepts a new job it is reasonable to assume that this person has considered the cost of travelling between home and workplace”) yet you made no comment when I highlighted the fact that the government who approved the CSA criteria is the same government who claim expenses for second homes (at the taxpayers expense!!!) because the do not live near their work !! All Leigh and thousands like him are doing is asking the CSA to consider the FACTUAL expenses involved in trying to get to work to keep their job so that they may be able to give their child (ren) a decent life… But it’s only the PWC that can do that because the CSA bleeds NRPs dry!

    You may feel that I (and others who challenge your advice/answers) digress from the initial posts but a mess is a mess no matter how many parts there are to it… I will continue to question what you say until you prove that your advice actually works…. Or the system changes to address the problems…

    This is only words on a page to you Alice, you can take it or leave it, you have a choice… For me and everyone else who complains about the CSA it’s about our lives unnecessarily being destroyed…. We don’t have the luxury of Choice

  26. @ Sally – I see no point in answering points regarding to MPs having 2nd homes- this is a forum regarding CSA and not MP’s homes, expenses or scandals.

    In response to the point you make about NRP’s asking the agency to consider factual expenses – I can only inform that the agency cannot consider this – the agency work by a legislation which has laid down a set formula for calculation child maintenance, this does not allow for individual expenses to be considered. If a case worker decided to reduce an NRP’s maintenance because they have higher than average travel cost they would be breaking in the law.

    Again I will state that the CSA cannot change the legislation – these issues need to be addressed to MP’s they are the only ones who can change legislation.

    My personal view or opinion really has no bearing on the outcome of Leigh’s case or any other case that is posted about on here – so I see no reason to express it. If I can give information to a person it may prove helpful or it may not be – there is nothing constructive in expressing my feelings.

  27. Alice, may I ask, if the OP does not mind, whether paying for private medication in order to heal an illness, is considered non essential?

    I do have an illness, and I am healing and becoming fitter for work thanks to buying privately the correct medication. But if this is not taken into my costs in my assessment when I am employed, then I cannot upkeep my health and will become ill again, and unable to work. Shame because I am so nearly healed and looking forward to a new job. Its not expensive but it is not cheap either, about £5-£10 a week depending on sypmtoms. Other bills have taken the hit to compensate as I hoped once in employment it would work itself out. But then I didnt take CSA into account of this, and I cannot see how I will ever be able to afford to work, let alone be healthy enough.

    Thank you for any advice in advance, Alice

    and sorry OP, for hijack, but do feel its another important related aspect of your situation regarding “disposable income definitions”

  28. Alice… You miss my point yet again…. It’s not about second homes or scandal…. It’s about the CSA criteria not making allowances for NRPs whom have excessive expenses due to necessity of keeping their jobs!! and as a result they are left with very little to survive on while the people who set those rules are claiming expenses for second homes to save them travelling a great distance to work every day!!! One rule for us and another for them…. That is the point I’m trying to make the system is unfair!!

    You said in previous threads that you feed back to your bosses, if that is true could you feedback that the ‘variation criteria’ is insufficient?

  29. the CSA will assess a person’s MC based on their net income – this is Gross less tax less NI less any pension contributions (if the NRP choses to pay extra into a works pension the agency will allow reasonable additional pensions contributions) – they also allow certain salary sacrifices (cycle to work, child care etc), CTC and WTC may be taken as income if appropriate, as will other income (income from shares, bonds, rent from properties etc) and this will give the NRP total income thereafter the the CSA will apply a ROC allowance for any child(ren) living with the NRP for whom the NRP is financially responsible for , any ROC allowance is deducted from NRP’s income assessible income – the agency will calculate the MC based on that income at 15% for 1 child, 20% for 2 children and 25% for 3 or more children for whom the NRP is liable to pay CM for. If the NRP has the QCs staying overnight for 52 nights or more per year the agency will reduce the weekly liability in accordance with a shared care allowance.

    the agency will not award allowances for medical care, travel to work expenses etc. The calculation is done in accordance with legislation and the agency must abide by this when setting the MC for an NRP.

    The NRP can apply for a variation in respect of certain things – ie paying the mortgage on the house the Qc(s) live in (so long as the NRP does not have an interest in this property), contact costs to maintain a relationship with the QC(s) – train/airfare if over a certain amount – an allowance for these will be awarded if the variation application is successful, the NRP will not be awarded the full cost of the fares (NRP cannot have shared care allowance and contact costs – it has to be one or either), if the NRP is paying for maintenance of the property the QC(s) live in – ie new boiler, roof repairs etc (again only if the NRP has no interest in the property, or if the NRP is paying utility bills for the house the Qc(s) are living in.

    NRP cannot apply for a variation for their living expenses if they are higher than average.

    NRP can ask for an adjustment if they have paid something on behalf of the PWC – rent, school uniforms etc – if the PWC confirms to the agency that this payment is in lieu of child maintenance. An NRP should make payments to the agency for their child maintenance unless the case is open but set to Maintenance Direct – if the NRP makes a direct payment to the PWC they can ask for an adjustment only if they PWC confirms that payment has been received and this was in lieu of child maintenance or if the NRP has obtained a receipt signed by the PWC clearly stating that the money received was in lieu of child maintenance – receipts may be verified if challenged by the PWC.

    I hope the above has answered your question, and many more

  30. @ Sally – I did not miss the point – I have answered the question clearly by stating that the CSA must adhered to the system, this is governed by legislation. If an NRP asks the CSA to consider his higher than average travel expenses when calculating the MC the CSA cannot do this – they have to abide by the law. The CSA cannot change the system, they cannot ignore the system and take into consideration things that the system does not, the MC must be calculated on the formula in place.

    I appreciate that people feel the system is unfair and as I’ve said many times before this is a point that they should take up with their MP as they are the only people who can make changes to the law.

  31. Ok thank you alice for your answer within that response. Looks like I will be unable to continue medicating my illness, and will be unable to work, and will have to either go on the sick, or JSA, and pay the flat rate of £5 to the CSA each week.

    Shame, could have been different. Everyone (my child, the csa, me) could have all been better off if cases were assessed individually, fairly, and had some leeway within them due to circumstances. All of nothing attitudes tend to lead to nothing.

  32. Carol

    would you be able to come to a private agreement with your ex regarding the amount of CM you pay if you were to return to work? Failing that would there be any other benefits that you would be able to claim to fund your medication – I assume from what you have said that this medication is not available on the NHS – maybe speak with a benefits adviser or CAB to see if there are other options

  33. OK GUYS
    I will be on here ALOT tired now.Sally…sweet dreams

  34. Sally x
    Carol your comments are superb and soo not rocket science unless you are part of this idiotic system called the csa
    I wish I could put myself across as well as some of you guys as I said time again….sweet dreams to you all

    dont have nightmares all you csa staff….Mr Cameron playing the pied piper and all his rats following him to their fate.

  35. sweet dreams gonk and thank you….I just call things how I see them, stick with the truth and the rest pretty much falls into place. One thing Ive learnt in this life and prob many others, is follow the money, and the ugly truths tend to be right there unfortunately.

    Alice, yes I had thought of offering my ex a private agreement via standing order through my solicitor, but this is not a reasonable man we are speaking of. He went to your company because I did not go back to him (it was an abusive relationship of which I am still affected, and also I was with someone else at the time) I cannot see how my ex narcissist would not see my offer as an opportunity to extract as much negative drama as possible, whilst getting nowhere, only to still end up with the CSA and feel like I had been run over by a bus from all the crazymaking. He would get off on it basically. And our child would still be none the better off, as I would still be banned from seeing her. He has used her as a pawn, so I made a decision to let go in love, if you like, but I want to support her in some monetary way, as I know this will mean something when shes older. However, it seems 15% plus £5 of whatever I earn will scupper my working weekly outgoings of £265 per week. Thats sitting in with no life, just a fire on and one meal a day, and my medication that the dr wont prescribe me because apparently my tests are in normal range (I hasten to add that in other countries I am seriously ill and would have been treated years ago)

    Maybe its not the CSA and its percentage cut that bankrupts people, but the extortionate cost of living, where even frugal living ends up with figures like I have stated above. Still, I had hoped to start work at the £8ph rate, and work my way up doing more complex clinical care, which if I could do that, meant I could pay CSA their percentage, and cover my basic costs, yet still not be able to cover unexpected bills like car failure.

    I know that PWC also have bills and when childcare is taken into account, its another head shaker story. Alice, the government you work for is failing its peoples. They may not like it, or want to be reminded of this fact, but….they are meant to be serving us, and yet they just serve themselves, and their corporate friends, whilst getting the rest of us to bitch about and to each other over money, and kids, and maintenance. It takes the focus off the real root cause doesnt it?

    I dont mind being governed, just do not think being fleeced for any pound or penny whilst blackmailing me in the name of my childs welfare, is cool. Its not. But I think you have read my thoughts in previous posts, so will not repeat them again.

    I hope fairness and compassion wins out for everyone involved in these situtations.


  36. I feel sick with the stupid arguments. People like @Alice are scampers and have no right to be on this board. Everything about the organisation she represents is illegal and promotes absurdity. What should be the point of discussion is; how do we disband this organisation. I am interested in 1 million signed petition to have this senseless organisations that derives a wedge between fathers and their children and foster greed from PWC disbanded. This is the only country in the world where a people are better off as single parents for selfish reasons without considering the long-term interest of their children and some parent are forced to commit suicide. The CSA has caused untold damages to society and destroyed the lives of children and parents alike due to its barbaric nature. It is a sick and disgusting system.

  37. Excuse me for coming in at such a late point here but, so far as I am aware, most employees that commute to a London employer can have their travel costs covered by the company to which they are employed, so, in this instance, surely the guy can have his train fare covered by the company, pay it back to the Company as a loan, thus out of CSA jurisdiction?? Alternatively, let the Company pay for the season ticket at £4k, reduce the employees wage by the same £4k, this not only ensures that the season ticket is paid, but also by reducing the income will also reduce the CM payable?? Tis but a thought??

  38. “topper on February 3rd, 2013 12:03 am

    Excuse me for coming in at such a late point here but, so far as I am aware, most employees that commute to a London employer can have their travel costs covered by the company to which they are employed, so, in this instance, surely the guy can have his train fare covered by the company, pay it back to the Company as a loan, thus out of CSA jurisdiction?? ”

    You see, now this is good practical advice, I dont agree that travel to work costs should be an issue at all myself, its not a ‘disposable’ income, if we all stopped travelling to work the country would stop. But good advice just the same.

  39. “gonk on February 2nd, 2013 –

    I wish I could put myself across as well as some of you guys …”

    Your comments and input are always welcome and valid. I make a pretty good fry up but I’m not a chef, still tastes good when I’m hungry though.

    We can all ‘bring something to the (discussion) table’, your experiences and opinions will go some way to helping others and thats what its all about so keep it up.
    Remember –

    “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”
    ‘Mahatma Ghandi’

  40. “sally on February 3rd, 2013 12:02 am

    I feel sick with the stupid arguments. People like @Alice are scampers and have no right to be on this board.”

    Hey, be chill, lets not send out the negative vibes, we should welcome the ‘good’ advice ‘alice’ gives and encourage her to provide more detail wherever possible, people can be helped.
    At the same time we should always ignore the not so good advice and stay awake to spot the difference. Here is a quote for ‘alice’ so she doesn’t feel left out –

    “The moment there is suspicion about a person’s motives, everything he does becomes tainted.”

    ‘Mahatma Ghandi’

  41. Regarding disposable income definitions…well I have just put phone down from the csa as I needed to speak with them about this agency job I have been offered etc etc.

    I will say she was very nice towards me, understanding, but obviously tied by the csa’s legislation. She did comment that I was co-operative and so every help would be given to me, as they know NRP’s have to live as well (I am so glad I wasnt drinking anything when she said this). I did roll off some figures and calculations and said that I would be unable to hardly work at all with their 15%. Since I NEED to have a car in order to work, as there is NO public transport, and I would be driving to each client. I asked, whether my car would be taken into consideration in my assessment.

    “No” was the answer given to me albeit in a nice way. I knew this would be the case, thanks to alice’s post above. But the reality for me is, no car, no work.

    The lady at CSA tried to be of further help and made a suggestion that if I have a partner, to live with them so they could help make up my losses. I told her i was single and she ‘joked’ that I should find myself a rich man and set up home with him….

    (I know….how utterly offensive to me, and to men as a whole….) Sure, just go screw some guy and move him in, to make up the financial deficit of your sad, little life thanks to the state system. Priceless.

    This is excatly what some women have done in order to set themselves up financially…so why am I even shocked that an agency which promotes this culture, actually has workers that also go on to promote this culture in advice given, even if it can be classed as an ‘off the cuff ‘remark. It is completely unprofessional, it highlights a recognition from within their own staff, that this system they work for, is flawed in its rigid stance towards NOT assessing each claim upon its own merit, and circumstances. If they didnt know that it is all fucked beyond repair, then they wouldnt feel the need to try help with such an unbelievable comment.

    I am also now wondering whether I was spoken to nicely because I am female??

    Time to look at that self employment route again me thinks…..

  42. Carol – you state that you would require a car in order to drive to each client – you also indicated that your work would be within health care. If you were in a job that requires you to drive between clients would you be using your own car and claiming milage expenses? If you are and these expenses were being reimbursed as genuine expenses, which they would be considered to be if you need to travel between several locations in the course of your day to day duties, they would not be counted as income for your CSA MC. If you were working in 1 location – say a hospital where clients come to you rather than you go to them, you would not be able to claim the cost of getting from home to work and back again on a daily basis.

  43. Hi Alice,

    I do not know the company policy on travel expenses as I have not worked any shifts for them, and am still in the acceptance stage at present. Some pay 25p a mile, which does not factor wear and tear, some 45p a mile, which is better, and some none at all. I had done some home care before whilst still on JSA because it was relief, and I got 45p a mile and saw that the CSA did not take that as income, but as a point it is good to note.

    I assume that most of my work would be to peoples homes, but also I could be sent to cover on a hospital ward, nearest one 20 miles away, which is ok, and the other hospitals are around 30 miles away. I dont mind paying the petrol to static places of work, as travel expenses are part and parcel of working. But when the cost of car finance, insurance, road tax, MOT and general repair is not taken into consideration with the CSA, the 15% cut of all I earn, and even working tax credit, which the CSA also take as income, make it impossible to make ends meet, and in my case I will spiralling into further debt by the rate of £70 a week, if Im not deemed in arrears. This is the problem I am faced with.

    I may even be forced to join fakebook and send my ex a message stating I am starting work and would he consider a private agreement, but just as I wrote that I had a big nasty twinge in my stomach. I will listen to that.

    I wish one was able to say “here, there you go, theres my financial outgoings, heres the receipts, lets come to an agreement with pwc and yourselves”

  44. Alice
    why is it that mp’s can claim expensies for overnight stays due to their job taking them to that destination to do their job or even claiming for second homes where they stay during long tours of duty for work but nrp’s in the same boat (however you like to define it ) have their essential travel classed as desposable income and subject to your government owned and run organization screwing us for more taxes using the smokescreen of the csa to do it.
    it really does make me laugh and know im pissing in the wind here cause i know you will come back with quotes and bollocks about the law….the law you have to abide by…lol…even tho you are the law….hey Alice…if you feedback some of this stuff to your piers.? do you ever tell em that “the laws wrong and needs to change”…..NO….cause it pays your wages and I just bet you sleep soundly at night and I double bet you aint being screwd by your own employer for cs….and that makes your job all the easier….I understand you…hey,you dont bite the hand that feeds you but happy to throw the meat on the table for them to feed on.
    disgusting…im ashamed to live in this country….I will fuck off to a place where my already heavily taxed wallet can rest and be rid of a government that dictates to me how I should support my kid.

  45. carol on February 4th, 2013 8:20 pm
    to alice are sooo righ,t but it will fall on deaf ears and blind idiots working for the csa

  46. Gonk….pissing in the wind…lol…I think we are all positively swimming upstream in a river of the golden stuff.

  47. j on February 4th, 2013 12:34 am

    “gonk on February 2nd, 2013 –

    I wish I could put myself across as well as some of you guys …”

    Your comments and input are always welcome and valid. I make a pretty good fry up but I’m not a chef, still tastes good when I’m hungry though.

    and J
    I love this analogy….superb…thanks it brilliant…you see…id never of thought of that lol

  48. Its called a Candiru (English and Portuguese) or vampire fish, a genera of parasitic freshwater catfish in the family Trichomycteridae; all are native to the Amazon River. Some candiru species have been known to grow to a size of 40 centimetres (16 in) in length, others are considerably smaller. These smaller species are known for an alleged tendency to invade and parasitise the human urethra;

    Evening all.

  49. “Gonk….pissing in the wind…lol…I think we are all positively swimming upstream in a river of the golden stuff.”

    You wee in the water, the vampire fish follows the trail!!!

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