Do I have to use the CSA or can I pay my ex direct?

December 31, 2012

Can anyone give me some advice

I had a perfectly fine arrangement with my ex where I paid the amount as per the CMC options website every month via direct debit.

Ex asks for bank statements,pay slips etc so I decline but offer them to her solicitor,I decline as I have been divorced two years clean break so ex has no right to see then. My ex then contacts the CSA a month ago since then it has been hell hpone call after phone call from them.

I tell them I have an agreement and I pay by direct debit each month but now they say I have to pay through them can this be right is it the business of Government to become involved at the request of bitter ex spoues or have I got that wrong ?



19 Responses to “Do I have to use the CSA or can I pay my ex direct?”

  1. Terry on December 31st, 2012 12:46 pm

    Once your ex decides to open a case with them you are screwed. You have no choice in the matter.

  2. Smithy on December 31st, 2012 3:10 pm

    You can setup a situation where you go “maintenance direct” which basically means they monitor the situation and the case is open but you make payments directly. It does require both parents to agree to this.

    I would advise you never to speak with them on the phone as they are liar’s and cheats and will try to trick you in various ways and also they are down right rude most of the time. If you write to them and request they only contact you in writing they are not allowed to phone you. Send it by recorded delivery as they will claim that it didn’t arrive.

  3. wilf on December 31st, 2012 3:22 pm

    “Maintenance direct” means the CSA do not monitor the payments they merely do an assessment and let each party know what the maintenance contribution should be.

  4. stuart on December 31st, 2012 4:01 pm

    Only if PWC agrees can you choose this method. as an NRP you have no rights at all in your own childrens welfare. what the PWC says goes with the CSA be it true or false.

  5. Alice on January 1st, 2013 2:04 pm

    An NRP can also refuse to make a case Maintenance Direct, as Smithy correctly stated BOTH parties must agree

  6. stuart on January 1st, 2013 2:33 pm

    An NRP can also refuse to make a case Maintenance Direct, as Smithy correctly stated BOTH parties must agree,

    And also Smithy correcly stated

    I would advise you never to speak with them on the phone as they are liar’s and cheats and will try to trick you in various ways and also they are down right rude most of the time. If you write to them and request they only contact you in writing they are not allowed to phone you. Send it by recorded delivery as they will claim that it didn’t arrive.

  7. john smith on January 1st, 2013 6:25 pm

    dear all

    thanks for all your replies i pay maintenance the same as the CSA rates would be i have always paid every month via direct debit no payments missed and on top of that take my kids on holiday buy half thier clothes trips etc.I dont want the csa involved as one i pay and secondly who needs another level of useless government in your life ? I have spoken to them a few times and its clear they dont know their back side from thier elbow which is worrying as my ex always threatens to go to the csa not for more money just to cause me grief any other tips or advice?

    also anyone know anything about the new planned csa gross income scheme i also asked the csa about that and again none of the staff employed by the csa the staff that shoul;d know seemed to know anything about the gross income scheme

    I alos raise the issue with the gross income scheme if they take it of at source the same as tax and NI are you still taxed on that deduction in effect you pay tax on money you never see can anyone advise


  8. wilf on January 3rd, 2013 11:34 pm

    John:- Gross income is sourced from HMRC but you will not be involved with this for some going by the CSA’s previous appalling attempts to convert cases from CS1 to CS2. You will be taxed as normal on your gross income.
    Unfortunately now you embroiled in the system the best you can do is make sure you pay on time and make sure you give them no excuse to add arrears to your payments.
    If ever you ask for a reassessment be sure to remember it will take them an age however simple the change might be this is a favourite time for arrears to accrue.
    If your can persuade your ex to continue with maintenance direct then this would be best all round. She will need to be the one who informs the CSA of this arrangement.

  9. Alice on January 4th, 2013 11:18 am

    The new scheme (2012) is being phased in with the first cases already moved over. The first cases moved over are those where there are 4 or more QCs to the same NRP and PWC, cases with 3 children will be moved over in 2013 and those with 2 and then 1 will follow.

    As previously stated your case can be made Maintenance Direct only if both yourself and your ex agree to this and both inform the CSA, if the case is made MD and either yourself or your ex decide it should return to Agency collection either party can have it changed back. Only the PWC can close the case, and if she does she can re-apply at any point.

    If there are any changes to your case, ie increase in income due to a pay rise or new employment, these should be reported to the agency immediately. It may take time for the agency to bring the case up to date but you can use the CSA calculator on their website to re-calculate what your new RM calculation will be. The new calculation will be effective as of the week it was reported (other than if the NRP goes onto or comes off a benefit – this will be effective back to the maintenance week in which the change occurred) so arrears will be due if the MC is higher. You should budget for this whilst the new calculation is being processed.

  10. Millie on January 4th, 2013 4:00 pm

    Someone else is using my username so changed name for new postings.
    Just had CSA on the phone to me at 1.30pm today to ask me if I still wanted them to get monies owing to my son from my ex husband.I imformed her that my ex was going to start paying £5.00 on Fridays into sons bank account and that I had stated to ex that when he paid it in to make sure that he put CSA payment and his full name.(I had spoken with my ex the day before and had this all sorted with him).The lady from the CSA said that she was pleased that we could sort this out between us and if it failed I could get back in touch with them.Right now the silly bit,at 2,15 pm I got a phone call from my ex saying that a lady from the CSA had just called him stating that they were sending him a form to fill in with his income to be declared and that I had rang them.I gave him the number which they had rang me from(0800)the same number they rang him from ,you can never ring the CSA using an 0800 number and he laughed and said he knew they were lying and that we were okay.We are now writing a letter with both signatures on asking them to stop contact with my ex and to let us get on making a private agreement.My ex knows I am not bitter and the £5.00 is a token amount that he is paying because my son chooses not to see him.CSA should not interfere unless asked to.

  11. wilf on January 4th, 2013 6:52 pm

    Millie:- Why do you not just ask the CSA to close your case?

  12. Alice on January 4th, 2013 9:02 pm

    If you request the case to be closed and no arrears to be collected there should be no contact from the CSA other than the final closure letters to both NRP and PWC along with letters advising that arrears will not be collected.

    If you have previously asked for your case to be changed to MD (where the NRP pays you – or your son – direct) then they should only contact the NRP for wage info etc if there are outstanding changes and the PWC or NRP wants the case brought up to date so that they know what the MC would be and they can base the payments on that.

    The above is assuming that the NRP only has 1 case. In the event of a NRP with more than 1 case the CSA would continue to assess on the other case(s)

  13. Millie on January 4th, 2013 9:09 pm

    I told her today that I didn’t want them to get involved as it was now between my ex and myself,Told them we were sorted and wished for the case to be closed,but she then went behind my back and rang my ex telling him that they were sending out forms for his wages and pension,and that they would send him an amount that he should pay me.We are sticking to the £5.00 per week and I don’t want anymore from him.His stepfather and I give my son the child benefit every week while he attends college.

  14. wilf on January 4th, 2013 9:44 pm

    Millie:- You need to call again and state clearly that you want the case closed and all arrears due to you have been paid directly. There might have been a change outstanding which they were seeking to resolve before closure so tell them you wish previous outstanding changes to be deleted.

  15. Alice on January 4th, 2013 10:20 pm

    When a PWC calls the agency and advises that the NRP is going to pay her (or the child) direct) the agency should question whether the case is to be closed completely (and what the PWC wants to happen to any arrears on the case if there are any) or whether she wants the case to remain open but collection changed to Maintenance Direct. In most case the PWC opts to change the case to MD – this is so that if the agreed payments are not made by the NRP the PWC can contact the agency and they can change it back to agency collection immediately and start collecting the payments again – if a case is closed and the payments stop they have to go through the whole procedure of opening a new case and this can cause delays in getting payments back up and running. It sounds to me like the person you spoke to has taken it that you want the case changed to MD – if there is an outstanding change the agency will be have to bring the case up to date so that both NRP and PWC have an up to date figure of what the maintenance would be if the agency were to collect (a lot of clients use this as a base figure in their discussion as to what the NRP is going to pay)

    If there are outstanding changes on the case the agency will have to process them before they can close the case unless you specifically tell them that you do not want the case brought up to date. In a closed case with arrears the PWC can advise that she does not want the arrears collected or that she has received this amount direct from the NRP.

    Call them back and make it clear that you want the case CLOSED and NO arrears are to be collected.

  16. Millie on January 4th, 2013 10:28 pm

    Thanks Wilf,myself and my ex are going to wait till the CSA send him the forms then we are going to write a letter together stating that we do not want the CSA involved and both sign it.My ex couldnt pay for 8 weeks due to him having no money so we wiped the slate clear to start afresh next week.As my son and his dad dont see each other £5.00 seemed a good gesture and that it could always be said that my ex paid something.I get CB and CT so we are in no need for anything else from him.

  17. Alice on January 4th, 2013 11:02 pm

    if you ex was up to date with his payments until the 8 week period you have mentioned you can inform the csa that you do not want the payments collected – they can be suspended and you can ask for them to be collected at a later date if you want, or you can ask for them to be adjusted, the adjustment would need to be requested in writing and once debt is adjusted it cannot be collected at a later date. from what you have said above it sounds very much like you do not want it collected now or at any time.

  18. Bonnie on January 13th, 2013 10:22 pm

    Alice can you please look at my thread on the csa advice forum …I have specifically asked for your help in the title of the thread as i am helping out on a case with the knowledge I have learnt so far. You have answered a few of my qs already regarding Maintenance direct means the case is still open ….. I am trying to help resolve a case to be CLOSED and a settlement is paid to PWC in full and final satisfaction of the PWC arrears. The NRP is then going to pay standing order to PWC bank monthly. The NRP wants the csa out of his life he has been suicidal over them. I dont think that its explained properly to the PWC about case closures and MDirect. The NRP could be led to believe that the case is closed and get stung further down the line. Does a letter get sent stating that the case is now on MD ? as a letter has been recieved to say that the other party no longer wants the application or the case to continue. We are not sure if this means its COMPLETELY closed.

  19. Bonnie on January 14th, 2013 1:20 am

    I have also just read a thread from june 2012 where a NRP and PWC did exactly this and the arrears were only suspended. This NRP was told by people on the foum that csa cannot write off arrears even if the PWC says she doesnt want them if they are owed to her, also these arrears can be collected at anytime in the future. The NRP I am helping has been told his arrears are suspended but not written off yet and as usual the system wont let anyone look into anything…… we thought this may be as the paperwork hasnt been completed by the pwc yet? Please advice needed sooner rather than later Alice on my thread on csa advice forum ….FOR CHALL, ALICE OR ANONYMOUS…please help!

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