CSA going after mothers as well as fathers

June 11, 2008

You may think that the child support agency are just going after absent fathers in order to get them to pay up to the mother? In fact that’s not true, there are over 150,000 mothers living apart from their children in the UK. This is as a result of the UK courts awarding custody to fathers.

Margaret Clarke is one such mother, she came home from work to find that her husband had left and had taken their two children with him.

My husband ended our eight-year marriage by walking out with my two young sons, then aged 4 and 2. I came home to an empty house. It was a nightmare.

Despite a court ruling that she could have her children back, her husband refused.

When it comes to custody battles, possession is nine tenths of the law. If you’ve got the kids from the outset you are in a much better position to maintain the status quo. My ex-husband was able to establish a ‘new normal’ with the children, thus initiating the elimination of me as their mother from their lives.

Eventually Margaret lost her case as she was working full time, and like so many fathers today she paid the price for being the main earner in the family. She was confined to just having contact with her children once a week and every other weekend.

This isn’t uncommon now, as the CSA have shown that the non resident parent is actually the mother in 66,900 of their cases.

Sarah Hart claims that mothers living apart from their children are being unfairly labelled as unfit mothers.

People assume that they have either abandoned their children or been deemed unfit mothers by the courts. They are perceived as bad mums, odd, possibly even heartless, selfish or cruel.

In reality, the circumstances surrounding a mother choosing to living apart from a child are often complex and emotionally charged. Decisions are often made very quickly in times of high stress, few resources and seemingly few choices.

This is of course what every father living apart from his children goes through, so while Sarah Hart is correct in that just because a mother lives apart from her children, and doesn’t have custody, it doesn’t mean she is a bad mother; by the same token every father that lives apart from his children isn’t a bad father.

For fathers though the issue is greater as many of them don’t even have access to their children due to the mother’s refusal to allow them.

When it comes to custody rights in the UK, the law is still firmly on the woman’s side.

Comments

  • laurie clark says:

    CSA? its run by women for women!!! i am a dad with an 11yr old son,his mum has absolutely nothing to do with him in any way,i have been trying for 4 yrs for csa to get in touch with her even about my case considering they couldnt find her in 18mts and after a week i had her home address and the large spar supermarket she manages! I have lots of male friends who leave there wifes and months later there wages are being arrested? I have a letter saying she owes £25 a week since october 2009 and my son would get this backdated,that was 2 yrs ago?

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