I thought Highwaymen were long gone

April 8, 2012

For 5 years my daughter stayed with me at least 4 nights a week, I never asked the CSA for help as my ex was living with her boss, who payed her a minimal salary and any bonus/commission was paid to him, so no point going for any money as I’d have got minimal amounts. My daughter reached 12 years old and hormones etc kicked in and she chose to stay with her mother 5 days a week, as soon as her mother had the child allowance assigned to her she applied to the CSA, never even spoke to me about it.

I got a message on my answering machine about a private business matter, so stupidly, even knowing it was the CSA rang the number, so the clock started as soon as I rang them, they asked for my pay details and how many nights I had my daughter, they asked me to send my two previous months pay slips, five days later I received an reply paid envelope no letter or anything with it. Three days later two further calls about a”private business matter” that was on top of two on the day I rang them, I ignored them as the usual thing of people not being updated about the case. Two weeks after the initial call i had another message, so I rang to be told they had done my calculation, which was way higher than I had been quoted originally, firstly they had entered my pay as 4 weekly not monthly and also my ex had said i had my daughter only 99 nights a year and I had provided no evidence of the actual nights.

I did point out it hadn’t been requested, they said we tried to ring you! at home midweek whilst I was at work, that was one of the “private business matter”, not we need further information and they claim that the data protection act prevents them saying anything else. I had another call 3 days later to say they had recalculated and I MUST set up the direct debit then, even though they still hadn’t sent me anyway to provide the additional evidence, I refused. I finally received the first letter 2 days later, plus one for the wrong calculation and a third one asking me to send a diary or calendar to prove when I had my daughter, even the courts don’t ask for that they take your word. Two days afterwards I recieved another call saying if I didn’t set up the direct debit then they would contact my employer for direct deductions and if that happened they would ignore any evidence I had submitted of additonal nights.

I think that is illegal using those threats especially as they hadn’t had all of the evidence due to their failure to request it, but I had no choice, so they now have me by the short and curllies and can take as long as they want to correct their error.


  • Brett says:

    Ian. Like you I was stitched up by the CSA. Unfortunately nothing they do seems to be illegal. They can do what they like. They make up arrears and these spineless CSA case workers then threaten you with a Liability Order and/or send the bailiffs to your home to do their dirty work. I hope someone on here can give you some positive advice.

  • Carol says:

    Yip that sounds about right with the CSA!

    My partner is not allowed to take calls at work as the CSA are well aware, so they telephoned his mobile – no answer so called house – obviously he is at work so no answer at home either. They translate that to being non compliant so DEO in place now we are totally snookered. 1 year later of complaining and nothing done as they are getting money.

    Only thing I can suggest is a complaint letter. Get your MP involved so they are also aware of the shambles this Agency really is – your complaint will also be fast tracked if you get MP involved and a case worker appointed quicker – quite bad you have to do that but true. When CSA call let them know you want all future dealings with them in writing and that your MP is involved. They will quickly change their tune. Keep diary of everything and how often your daughter stays at yours and take photos to prove it, sometimes a diary is not enough with this Agency.

  • Carol says:

    Re your comment also about the threats. Yes the staff can often become intimidating. They told me when I said we couldn’t afford the payments that they would seize all assets and put an order over our house. Pity for the CSA that the house and car is mine so they can’t seize anything as they are not my partners. But really what kind of Government Agency does this!! They try to say they are only notifying you what can potentially happen and it was not a threat – I tried that one!

  • jay. says:

    Carol they threatened us with that too, I laughed and said do it, they want arrears pre 2000 so can’t get any liability orders on us, some law on it. Any issues forget ringing them, emails or letters marked complaint and get mp involved, let them deal with what they put in force. Never back down and know your rights.

  • skippydo says:

    Please may spread the word and please let’s try setup a REAL COLLECTIVE RESPONSE to this mess.

    A protest March for fairness! on FEB 1ST 2014 @ 10 DOWNING ST and DWP Head office.

    Who’s in?

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