Everyone I speak to gives a different answer

September 26, 2012

I started paying csa in 1997/98 the csa said i had arrears of around £1800 from the date i left my ex up to the date they got involved as i had been giving my ex money each week in cash when i collected my son i had no proof that i had given it to her, after much debate between the csa my ex and myself she admitted to having recieved half that amount so the csa decided to split the arrears and i could pay each month in with my regular payment this i did until oct 2002 when my ex decided to take my son to live in tenerife.

I contacted the csa and was told i didn’t have to pay anymore as he wasn’t living in the country.

In the December 2002 my ex decided that she could no longer afford to keep my son and we paaid for him to come back and live with us which he did on the 21st December 2002 he was ten years of age, my ex came back to live in the uk early 2003 and paid nothing towards his keep so we informed the csa and they startedinst proceedings against her but even after four years she didn’t pay a bean.

He went back to live with her at the age off fifteen and left school at sixteen we never heard from the csa again until sept 2012 demanding £9800 they say for arrears outstanding from 1998 to 2007 and if we didn’t pay we would be taken to court.

As you can imagine we contacted them and asked how they have reached that figure and why it had taken so long, the answer was we are re-investigating suspended cases.

Everytime i speak to anyone i get conflicting answers, they say both cases are treated as seperate and that my ex’s case was closed even though she never paid and my case was suspended and i have paid.

At the moment i have requested an audit and i also wanted a transcript of all conversations but tonight they have told me i have to pay for that, i have also told them i want copies of all paper and computerised records relating to both cases.

I am at my witts end and so frustrated with the csa because the left doesn’t know what the rights doing everytime you speak to them it’s more distressing, can you help.


6 Responses to “Everyone I speak to gives a different answer”

  1. John on September 26th, 2012 3:36 pm

    They are a nightmare especially when speaking with them on the phone. Stop speaking to them on the phone at all using the following steps is my advice as they used to wind me up something rotten.

    1. If you can afford it apply to have the NACSA to act for you. They will do a case review and then act for you so you don’t have to speak with the CSA at all and they take no crap from the CSA.

    2. If not write to the CSA by recorded delivery and tell them you only want them to contact you by post. They will tell you it’s more convenient to speak on the phone which for them it is but if everything is written down it makes them a lot more concious of what they say. It also slows down the process and you don’t get mad suggestions like “why not take out a loan” to pay us or the like. An average claim is said to cost the tax payer £25,000 with more complex cases costing £40,000+ so also there is the added benefit that the slower we can get them to act the more it costs them and the more likely the public is going to call for them all to be fired.

    3. Apply for your own file under the freedom of information act.
    or there is a letter template here

  2. j on September 26th, 2012 4:36 pm

    The records you want are called your Data Protection prints and are a transcript of anything the csa have done regarding your case. They do charge about £10 (although you are right they shouldn’t charge anything) which I sent via postal order. Don’t bother speaking to the csa on the phone. Send all communication by letter and recorded delivery. (keep the receipts) Insist on written replies. Try involving your MP, not too much they can do but the more comlaints against the csa the better. At some point the MP’s might get fed up and shut them down. Make a formal complaint to ian duncan smith who I think is the government minister responsible. (if I’m wrong someone will read this and correct me) Get yourself mentally prepared for a long and expensive battle.

  3. chall on September 27th, 2012 9:03 am


    Reading your post, you have obviously already made a request for you Data Protection File as you have ‘requested an audit and i also wanted a transcript of all conversations’ and ‘ i have also told them i want copies of all paper and computerised records relating to both cases’.
    The CSA will supply you with such, however there is a £10 fee – do not send cash. Cheques should be made payable to; CSA. The agency should then supply you will all the info they hold on you within 40 consecutive days.

    Quote michael; ‘i had arrears of around £1800 from the date i left my ex up to the date they got involved’

    Under old rules the effective date was set when a Maintenance Enquiry Form was deemed to have been received by an NRP. The agency should not back date prior to such.
    You need to establish the date the agency issued a MEF to you, as this is the start date for your case.

    Quote michael; ‘my ex decided to take my son to live in tenerife.
    I contacted the csa and was told i didn’t have to pay anymore as he wasn’t living in the country’.

    Are the agency now claiming that you should pay maintenance for this period?

    Quote michael; ‘my ex’s case was closed even though she never paid’

    Were you informed by the CSA at the time that they were closing the case?

    chall ~ afairercsaforall

  4. KMcQ80 on September 27th, 2012 9:53 am

    ‘Everytime i speak to anyone i get conflicting answers’
    And that sums up the CSA.

    That’s why I only deal with them by post keeping a copy of all letters received and sent in date order.

    If and when they phone next, ask for the telephone call to be recorded and explain why you are no longer prepared to deal with them by telephone.
    If’s not your fault it’s them; regardless of the CSA/DWP being a government department.

    If and when they write, reply asap, keep a copy, file in date order and send recorded delivery.

  5. michael on September 27th, 2012 6:57 pm

    no they want me to pay my ex for the time he was living with me so i not only paid for his keep they want me to pay her for not having him it’s just a farce, i now have to prove he lived with me even though the csa were informed.
    They are doing an audit on the information they have that will take about eight weeks even though i have told them the information they are using is wrong, what a waste of gov money.

  6. chall on September 27th, 2012 10:45 pm


    When the agency told you that you ‘didn’t have to pay anymore as he wasn’t living in the country’ was your ex’s case closed?
    If so, your ex would have needed to make a new claim once your son moved back in with her (when he was 15).
    If the case wasn’t closed, why did it remain open?

    When did you inform the CSA that your son had moved in with you?

    Did you claim child benefit for you son whilst he lived with you?

    Also, you would have needed to arrange schooling, doctors, dentist etc, would any of these be prepared to state, from their records, that you were first contact and the address where your son lived with you?

    Although an audit may take the agency around 8 weeks, when you send your payment for your DP File remind them under section 7(1) of the Data Protection Act 1998 they have 40 consecutive days to provide you with the info you have requested.

    Did the CSA advise you at the time that they were closing the case against your ex??

    chall ~ afairercsaforall

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