CSA Complaints

CSA staff are calling me a liar

£7,500 taken from my savings account out of the blue for money I dispute owing.

Briefly, 2 children, this started when they were 16 & 13. The children have lived at whichever house they choose since they were around 2.

It has very much been a 50/50 thing. As the parent who earns the most I have always paid for most of the clothes, holidays, gadgets, school trips etc. Basically my children are in my life every day.

Son has lived with me 24/7since he was 16. The CSA expect me to pay maintenance for him between Apr – Sep 2010, my son has sent a letter stating that he lives here full time. Ignored.

They have assessed my income incorrectly at £49,000 when it’s much lower. I have provided an accountants letter to prove this around 2 ½ years ago. Apparently they never received this; however it’s in my files that have been sent to me under the data protection act.

I have had my daughters child benefit book transferred to my name as the CSA told me in the early days that this was what they went by. I put a claim in against the Mother for CSA (to get my own so called arrears down). This was cancelled, I was not informed of this in writing, although the CSA say I was & I thus lost the chance to appeal the decision.

Also they now state that whoever holds the child benefit, it only makes up a part of their decision on who is the PWC.

They have cancelled my own counter claim for my son, how they can possibly deny that he has lived with me for 3 years 24/7 I don’t know but they are.

At this point in time my son lives rent free, gets most of his food provided & still gets the occasional clothes bought for him. He’s 19 so the CSA don’t count him now but he get’s nothing from his Mother, so I provide full time for my son & part time for my daughter. Why should I pay maintenance, am I wrong, should I pay maintenance?

I have provided proof of residence for my daughter, prescriptions, school letters, bank statements etc, all to no avail.

Every single thing I have told the CSA has been turned down. They are basically calling me a liar.

I have this ongoing for another 3 years.

My complaint level is now addressed at the Chief Executive Officer Jim Edwards.

After that the Independent Case Examiner.

After that a solicitor, spending money that I can’t afford.

I’d love to hear any ones thoughts on my case, any advice they can offer.

12 thoughts on “CSA staff are calling me a liar

  1. Oh my goodness what a nightmare for you. Have you seen your mp about this and then you’ll have only one person dealing with it. Also when have they calculated the arrears from?

    If child benefit is being paid then the one who receives it is the pwc, don’t understand why the would say otherwise…or why your claim would be cancelled if your the pwc!

    Sorry I can’t offer much advice, just shows how incompetent the csa are in some cases.

  2. Hi
    Sorry to hear you problems and hope you get the ‘specific’ advice you need. For additonal info you could try although they seem a ‘bit odd’ and are fussy who they help, still worth a try.

    The ICE isnt as ‘independent as you might think, they are another branch of the DWP who investigate the csa (a branch of the DWP). I got the impression they were there to find ‘you’ (us) guilty and the csa correct. Try only and deal with them in writing, be very careful what you say and look very closely at the questions they ask.

    The general advice I can give you is –

    This isnt the csa its an open forum so don’t give names/details etc especially of children. (your own name can be used to identify the kids, and your case)

    Don’t deal with the csa by phone, everything in writing, sent recorded, keep the receipts.
    Copy your MP into everything and try and get them involved as your advocate.

    Make a formal complaint about any decision you are unhappy with from the outset as time limits are involved. Always go for an appeal tribunal asap following the internal process.

    Get a copy of your Data Protection prints from the outset so you know what you are dealing with, again follow the correct procedure in wording your request to get ALL information, send it to the right department, send the correct fee.

    Don’t be afraid to complain about any csa staff, or their superiors if you feel you have just cause.

    Remember the process, internal complaint, ‘independent’ case examiner (the csa protection department), appeals tribunal, parliamentary and health service ombudsman through your mp for maladministration.

    Hope this helps and good luck.

  3. I had a phone call today from the ICE, well a voice mail. Funnily enough the number that came up was the CSA.
    So I guess they can’t be att all independent if they work from the same offices…

  4. Hi Steve

    Yeah I got a letter from the ‘ICE’ somwhere with an [email protected] address (or something like that) so it is the same organistaion, just a different department.
    I’m pretty convinced the whole csa scam is just a tax collecting exercise, these days the money seems to just go to the secretary of state. Ho hum.

    Anyway, specialist csa lawyers are good but yes the whole process can be expensive, it can take a long time and solicitors tend to send you monthly updates, for which you get charged.

    If you are half about (and have the time) you can do a lot of the preparartory paperwork, research and collation yourself and save a few quid with a direct access barrister which you can get from the internet. Most solicitors will use a barrister so you are cutting out the ‘middleman’.

  5. Ha my case in bloody complex!!!

    We shall see what the ICE says. I will after that probably go down the NACSA route, get them to look at all my files & advice me of my next step.

    There has to be a way to force them to acknowledge that my son lived with me 24/7 for a period they are expecting me to pay maintenance for him.
    From there they have to acknowledge that my own claim was valid & should not have been cancelled.

    Then I need them to adjust the figures they reckon I owe as they took my income completely incorrectly, about 100% higher than what I was earning.

    I’ll keep this post updated & would still welcome views & support.

  6. Steve,

    Is your case calculated under old or new rules (before, on or after 03/03/03)?

    Has there been a penalty assessment on your case, which may not have been converted to a proper assessment?

    Was there a copy of the cancelled case letter, that the CSA say you had, that you didn’t receive, in you DP file? (hope that makes sense)

    The legislation for Persons treated as non-resident parents is as follows;
    8.—(1) Where the circumstances of a case are that–
    (a) two or more persons who do not live in the same household each provide day
    to day care for the same 
    child, being a child in respect of whom an
    application for a maintenance calculation has been made 
    ; and
    (b) at least one of those persons is a parent of the child,
    that case shall be treated as a special case for the purposes of the Act.
    (2) For the purposes of this special case a parent who provides day to day care for a
    child of his is to be treated as a non-resident parent for the purposes of the Act in the
    following circumstances–
    (a) a parent who provides such care to a lesser extent than the other parent,
    person or persons who provide such care for the child in question; or
    (b) where the persons mentioned in paragraph (1)(a) include both parents and
    the circumstances are such that care is provided to the same extent by both
    but each provides care to an extent greater than or equal to any other person
    who provides such care for that child–
    (i) the parent who is not in receipt of child benefit for the child in question;
    (ii) if neither parent is in receipt of child benefit for that child, the parent
    who, in the opinion of the Secretary of State, will not be the principal
    provider of day to day care for that child.
    (3) For the purposes of this regulation and regulation 10 “child benefit” means
    child benefit payable under Part IX of the Contributions and Benefits Act.

  7. Chall, thanks for your comments 🙂

    My case was calculated in 2010 so new rules I guess.

    What is a penalty assessment? I am not aware of one, in fact other than the first demand to make payment of £94.00 p/w in early 2010 & then a demand for £7,500 around Apr 2012 I have not had any actual demands?

    Was there a copy of the cancelled case letter, that the CSA say you had, that you didn’t receive, in you DP file?
    Yes there was.

    I didn’t really understand the legislation of PWC you quoted.

    To my mind,
    My son has lived with me 24/7 since he was 16, (prior to that 4 – 5 nights per week)
    His sister, my daughter spends 3 – 4 nights per week.
    How the hell does that not make my home the family home?

  8. “Steve on January 29th, 2013 – To my mind, My son has lived with me 24/7 since he was 16, (prior to that 4 – 5 nights per week)
    His sister, my daughter spends 3 – 4 nights per week. How the hell does that not make my home the family home?”

    Who had the child benefit for your son for the time in question?

  9. Who had the child benefit for your son for the time in question?

    Ex had my sons child benefit at the time of her original CSA claim. I quickly put in for it & applied for it around June 2010. I got it & it was actually backdated to (I believe) Sept 2009.
    The CSA have been made aware of this but choose to ignore it…

  10. Steve,

    The CSA used penalty assessments in old rules cases, when they didn’t have enough info to make a calculation. The PA tended to be really high, some can be converted to a proper assessment and could lessen arrears.
    On new rules a Default Maintenance Decision £30 for 1 child, £40 for 2 & £50 for 3+ is used.

    There was a case on here a while back where a letter in a DP file, the the NRP never received, had the NRP’s correct address on it, but the date was way before the NRP had even moved to the address (can’t remember which member it was – sorry).- does everything tally on yours ?

    The legislation quoted gives the rules for deciding who should be deemed non resident – the main point being ‘(i) the parent who is not in receipt of child benefit for the child in question;’

    Alice may be able to offer specific advice as the CB for your son was back dated to Sept 09.


    (Re; j’s link above )

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