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2497 Responses

  1. Andrew
    | Reply

    My ex-wife has 65% care of the children. She works part-time, and has been offered full time work and declined it from her employer. I am trying to understand how it is fair for me to work 11 day fortnights to earn a good income and there is no expectation from child support that my ex-wife attempt to gain full time employment, when there is no reason for her not to. Also with the formula…we recently changed care so that my care of the kids increased by 2 days per month. When this was formalised by Child Support, my repayments went down by $18 per month. This indicates that it costs me $9 per day to have 2 children in my custody, so essentially, I am worse off than I was before and my ex-wife is financially better off? I am struggling to see why the harder worker is penalised for doing so. The more I earn, the less incentive there is for her to work full time. I am now hearing that she is planning to go back to 3 days a week from 4 and that will result in my payments going up even further. I find it unrealistic and unfair that a single parent can make the decision to work less at the expense of the person working hard to maintain a good income. Surely there is some kind of criteria that requires more effort than this on the part of the payment recipient?

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      You’ve described some flaws in the current system well.

  2. Simon
    | Reply

    Hi, my partner’s ex has recently freely decided to have 0% care of his daughter and subsequently has been paying the mother $1300 per month as he has a much higher income. His income has been consistently high for ten years but 3 months into paying has conveniently predicted his income to be half off before. He is self-employed and I suspect that his business will be re-directing half of his pay to his new wife to lower his personal income, thus reducing his payments. Is there a process in place to check these kind of dealings? Thanks

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Your partner can apply for a Change of Assessment. However, there is little Services Australia can do if he chooses not to provide all the financial information they seek.

  3. Tomas
    | Reply

    G’day Andrew,
    Thanks for your time. Love your forum mate!

    Question, I have been paying child support for 6 years.

    My ex wife with our property settlement and super benefited more with a 55%/45% split.

    My ex wife since our divorce has resided in a home purchased by her parents and I don’t believe there is any mortgage or rental transaction during that time.

    Over time both our income has increased year on year, (with myself having greater earnings). However, in the last financial taxable year, her earnings have dropped which would lead me to believe she has gone part-time or not working to her capacity, which in turn has resulted in much higher payments.

    Do you think I have a case for a CSA?

    I was thinking I would list reason 5 (property settlement) as the agreement for higher split was to ensure a house could be repurchased and 8A as I don’t believe the housing situation (living in one of her parents investment property) is fair and just and 8B based on her earnings have decreased.

    Appreciate your feedback
    Cheers mate.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Thanks Tomas. You might have a case for “Reason 8 – Earning Capacity” Change of Assessment if you had evidence that she cut back on work hours in order to improve her child support assessment (which you probably don’t).

      Reason 5 would require demonstrating that a certain transfer within the property settlement was for the child’s benefit. Hard to see that working with an even care split and with the time elapsed.

  4. Drew
    | Reply

    Two parents that have 50/50 care. After assessment one pays the other $25 a week. The payee now states that the $25 is to cover all expenses and refuses to pay for anything else including school fees or any other expense. What can be done?

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Well, the $25 is obviously irrelevant. It’s a tactical battle now. Normally, it’s best with even care if you split categories, so one parent pays for certain types of things and the other parents contributes elsewhere. If you’re paying, that puts you in control in many ways. You can use that to your advantage. There’s not much that the system offers in terms of help, aside from major spending items like medical expenses and private school fees.

  5. Anon
    | Reply

    Example: two parents with two young kids. one parent earns 25k the other 110k.
    10 days a fortnight with parent (25k) and 4 with parent (110k). The online calculator has an annual amount of 14766 listed (567 fn) But if it is worked out with the nightly amount of 188.79 listed (Beyond 50/50) this equates to 6 nights x $188.79 = $1132. Fn.
    so my question is why are the calculations different. And is either ok to use.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Glad you could follow along with the calculations for the most part. But it’s only 3 nights per fortnight above 50:50 (10 nights instead of 7). So, the figures do actually match.

  6. Anon
    | Reply

    Hi, just wanted to ask why there is a per night calculation and an annual calculation?
    As one seems to be more than the other.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Not sure exactly what you mean. But there are 365.25 days per year on average. Maybe that helps.

  7. Sam
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,
    Just the other day i received a call from CSA stating my ex had now wished to collect CS off me. We have had a private written agreement in place for the last 4 years and have had no problems, however she is now pregnant with her 2nd child to her new partner, so no surprise why she is going for it.
    However in our past written agreements, we both agreed that we would take the combined household income of both parents and their new partners into account when agreeing on payments to ensure they are fair and reasonable.
    We also both agreed that if either of us decided to take a break from work due to a pregnancy/parental responsibility we would calculate payments on the last tax year that either party (who decided to take a break from work) for CS until the other “parent” is back in full time work again.
    I would like to know if this agreement is actually enforceable, or was just a nice peace of paper i wrote on and she contributed too, and would be used in a Change of Assessment?
    Also as now she has decided to collect CS from CSA can i apply to deduct certain payments that i make for my daughter like health insurance, clothing, holidays ect when i have her?

  8. Jack
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,

    Can a parent who constantly uses the process available to them eg COA and continues to have determination from that process against them have some form vexatious applicant declaration made to stop them making unnesessary applications ?

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      I’m not aware of a way to stop people making nuisance review applications.

      When you’re required to make a response, you can do it quickly and effectively so that the other parent is inconveniencing themself much more than you. Just mention that this is another nuisance review and provide a minimal response (but with evidence) to defend yourself. You don’t need to provide all the info requested, or any info for that matter.

  9. Mork
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,

    I have just been hit with a child support claim. Up until this date we have simply split all costs 50/50. We have 50/50 care of our 2 girls aged 3 and 6 in a 2/2/3 fortnightly cycle.

    We both earn good money – she earns around $150K and I earn in the vicinity of $250-$350K.

    Our childcare won’t take payments from both parents so my ex is paying for childcare for the 3yo and I transfer the monies. The payment is a direct debit.

    Can I simply tell her that because I’m now paying child support that I will no longer be paying any additional childcare (or any other) fees? If I do so, what are the potential areas of recourse she might have?

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      With childcare, whichever parent is using the service needs to pay for it. That’s not something involved with child support.

      Not paying when you equally benefit from the service is not OK. She has no recourse but would be unhappy about it and there may be consequences from that. You probably should just leave this alone to be honest.

  10. AR
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,
    My ex-partner’s income was $39500 as declared in the Jul20toJun21 Tax Return. The income significantly icreased to $165,000 for the year Jul21toJun22. Is my ex-partner required to declare the increased income for Jul21 to Jun22 earlier in the financial year? In absence of any declaration of the increased income, CSA used $39,500 for the purposes of CS calculations during Jul21 to Jun22. Can I request CSA to recalculate the CS Payments for the period Jul21 to Jun22 using my partner’s increased income? There was 50%-50% care of the child.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Parents are asked to estimate their income when it goes up, but are under no obligation to do so. Your ex has done nothing wrong. It’s also normal for income rises to affect payments with a lag since the system is based on the last recorded taxable income.

      I don’t believe you have any grounds for going back in time and having payments re-assessed. Maybe you should just be grateful that your ex is now earning a lot of money. Unless you’re earning as much, you’ll be getting a bunch of payments for doing nothing.

  11. AR
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,
    I wish to lodge FormCS1970 as the income of the other parent was substantially higher than the estimated income from previous tax return.
    On Form CS1970, does one declare just the income or income and assets? If assets are declared, does it affect the Child Support Payments?

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Assets don’t normally affect child support (unless very large and the parent has low taxable income). You don’t have to declare everything on CS1970. It’s nothing like a tax return. Is just a form for them to collect info. You can skip whole sections if you don’t think the info is relevant.

  12. Will
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,

    The CSA system is broken.
    As an educated person is find if difficult to read CSA assessments – so how on earth can we expect the average Joe/Jane to interpret assessments?

    Before I ask my question, please consider the following;

    1) Abducted children rob me of a meaningful relationship with my children. There’s no recompense or factoring of care percentage acknowledging this. Double whammy.
    You pay someone to rob you of your children? WTF?

    2) Payers have no incentive to earn more. In fact they will try cash in hand or reduced hours etc.

    3) Giving kids pocket money to give them some self esteem and mini-freedom AND take the fiscal strain off mum is not allowed as NAP

    Question:
    Should the Productivity Commission launch an enquiry into the Child Support Agency – with reference to the monumental hidden costs to the payer, family members, economy and mental health issues.
    Particularly the lack of incentive for the payer to earn more to forge a new life.
    The CSA divides families and apparently is the leading cause of Mental Health issues, Suicides and DV cases affecting men in our modern era.

    Thoughts??

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Most of the key changes required to fix child support require legislative change. Personally, I wouldn’t trust the Productivity Commission to enlighten anyone. I sought a recommendation for Treasury to look at the issues but even that wasn’t agreed by the useless, time-wasting politicians who worked on the Family Law Inquiry.

  13. Paul Coates
    | Reply

    Hi, On one of your pages you wrote that The Family Law Inquiry will make its final report, which is all about child support, in late October 2021.
    Did this happen ?
    And what if anything did or is going to change in relation to the proposed “New Formula” for assessing payments ?
    I have been getting fucked over for years by the mother of my child who claims Centrelink payments & Child Support payments from me while for the last 8 years she has been working as a Prostitute earning $450/Hr cash so she pays no tax & therefore has the right to Centrelink & Child Support payments while all the time committing tax fraud.

    I have made numerous complaints to all 3 government agencies about this over the years & they all seem to respond with “It’s too hard for us to prove that a person is working as a Independent Prostitute for cash payments”.
    I would think that the adds on various internet sites such as – Red Escorts & Locanto & Escorts and Babes ETC would be enough evidence to at least get them to investigate my allegations further but apparently not & I just have to continue paying the whore child support every week or forfeit my tax return each year.

    I bet if I committed 8 Years of Centrelink & Tax fraud that I would be spending the next few in jail.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Yeah – nothing happened with the Inquiry. Only Pauline Hanson had the will and brains to want to do anything.

      Ironically, one of the easy proposals I put forward (putting an income benchmark in place) would have helped with your problem of undeclared income. But there’s nothing to help with that in place at the moment. You may want to try not to contemplate your ex anymore.

  14. Leigh
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,
    I have been paying child support for close to 3 years 2 kids. As part of the property settlement an investment property was sold. I received 38% of the property pool. It was agreed that $15k was set aside in trust to pay the majority of the CGT. My ex wife still refuses to work full time and I’m guessing this will be the first time a tax return is lodged. I lodged my tax return and my salary is around $162k however it shows as 182k due to the investment property etc. Clearly it’s not income in terms of my salary and was purely part of the legal orders / divorce settlement. My ex wife received around 80k. CSA used my Tax return and have now said I earn $182k and my support monthly payments have risen by $100. (I have 6 nights a fortnight care 50% school holiday) I currently pay $1370 but it will now be 1,468.67 ) I seem to get different information from them each time but now I was told because it’s not 15% over my normal yearly income they won’t exclude the income from the investment property but for her they will clearly as it’s over by a large amount I imagine her income is. Just seems rather unfair as it was a settlement and I already lost so much house, car, all belongings and had to spend 85k just to see my kids and force her to court. I’m almost at the point of just giving up on it but it just does not seem fair that I’m never on an equal playing field. They did say I could have her accessed for potential to earn as she just chooses to work under 20hours and has no medical issues and kids are in school. However that will just create more drama etc and make life hard for myself and the kids. Just wanted to know if you had any advice.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Have you put in an income estimate for 2022/23? That would negate your higher income in 2021/22. You can do this online. It’s just an estimate and you’ll ultimately pay based on whatever your income for 2022/23 turns out to be.

      You’re right about the unfairness. It’s disgusting, especially with new generations of very sexist young women seeming to appear on the scene all the time. They treat men poorly and with tremendous bias and seem to fill all the public sector jobs related to parenting matters.

      One of the key goals of this site is to help parents take a breath and treat financial matters with a bit of calmness and logic.

      I’d suggest you don’t express any displeasure about child support where it can be recorded. That would help prevent a Change of Assessment (Reason 8) if your income ever drops for any reason.

  15. Stewart
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,
    I have recently been advised that my ex wife has opened a claim of child support on me, even after she gave me her word in writing that she would not, if I continued to pay for 100% of my child’s (15yo) expenses – which I have ALWAYS done with no argument.
    The matter was going to be a private collection with my offer to pay her in the region of $13,000 per year with many more additional expenses I offered, until she changed her mind and decided to have the matter listed as Services Collection.
    I am now assessed to pay almost $2,000 per month for my 1 child who she has 100% care of. That’s over $70,000 over the next 3 years until my child turns 18. Seriously??? How can CSA justify that?
    I will be lodging objections with CSA on these 3 conditions;
    1. The ex has an earning potential of likely double her current annual income due to the fact that she recently qualified in Cert 4 for Mental Health care. The fact that she does not use her qualification means: (a) she can claim more from me, (b) if she was to get work using her qualifications, she would lose out on gvmt benefits like Centrelink and a Concession card. This point means that the CSA is basically enabling her to abuse the system, and have me responsible for her lifestyle. NOT FAIR! I have already paid her close to $200K, which includes my inheritance from my mother who passed away only 4 months before she told me “it’s over”. Makes me think she was just hanging around for the money to clear.
    2. We have another child together who has just turned 18 in September. Just because he is no longer considered a ‘child’ does not mean he is not financially dependent on me. He lives with me 100%. Therefore I will be submitting form CS1970 – Application to change your assessment Special Circumstances (Reason 9: I have a duty to support another person)
    3. At the time of separation, when she gave me her word (in writing on an email from her to me) that she would not claim child maintenance from me, I was earning a flat salary at a new job. I was excluded from any financial rewards (such as incentives, commissions or bonuses) while on my probation period. I will therefore also be submitting form CS4120 – Application for post separation income to be excluded, which from what I have understood means that the assessment will be locked at the separation date salary, and the rest of my income will be ‘quarantined’ or ‘exempt’ from the assessed amount according to my tax records.
    My questions to you and the other followers are;
    (i) Are there any other forms or applications available to me to object to the assessed amount?
    (ii) Has anyone had success/history with these types of application?

    Please make no mistake, I am willing and able to provide for my 15 yo child, but at $2,000 per month??? That is excessive and extreme!
    Thanks for your time and response.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      There are fairly simple rules around child support assessments. I think you have zero hope with 1 or 2. She can’t be penalised for not earning to her potential (though there is a provision for when people deliberately reduce their income). You also don’t have a “duty” to support an 18 year-old.

      With 3, it depends on the details. You just need to check whether your circumstances and timing match the rules around this provision. You should be able to figure out with high certainty whether you qualify for income quarantine or not.

  16. Jim
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew
    How does salary sacrifice effect assessable income for child support assessments?
    Regards Jim

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      They automatically add salary sacrifice money back on to taxable income when working out your child support income. So, you get a tax benefit but zero benefit in terms of child support.

  17. Anonymous
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,

    Can I please ask for your clarification for a child who is currently finishing year 11, turns 18 in early January, then starts year 12 (repeated) at the end Jan. Usually the paying parent will continue paying until the end of the school year, but the CSA rules state clearly that if a child turns 18 prior to school starting then it can’t be extended. Is the CSA likely to uphold this policy?

    Thanks

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      CSA follow the rules. I can’t see any way that child support would continue for an 18-year-old about to repeat Year 12.

  18. Vanessa
    | Reply

    Hello,
    I have a question please. My partner currently pays child support for 2 children from a previous relationship. We are planning to have a child of our own and I will obviously need to stop working for some time. I was wondering what CS takes into consideration in this situation, as I will be fully dependent on him financially while I care for our child.
    Thank you.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      His payments will reduce somewhat from having an extra dependent child. That’s built into the formula and is the only allowance.

  19. AR
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,
    Are Child Support Payments solely based on income of each parent? Do assets matter in the calculation of Child Support payments? What happens if one parent had a low income in year Jul20 to June 21, did not provide any estimate of Jul21 to June 22 income which turned out to be five times the estimate used by CSA, whilst the higher earning parent continues to receive Child Support payments from a lower earning parent, when the care ios shared 50% each? Are you able to suggest a lawyer who can assist in submitting Change of Assessment Form?
    Anon

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      A lawyer is not normally required for Change of Assessment applications. You just need to state your case and provide any relevant evidence to the Dept of Social Services. It’s not really an adversarial process.

      Income changes normally affect child support assessments with a lag. That’s a consequence of using reported income from the previous financial year. The other parent has done nothing wrong and you are in line to get your money eventually.

  20. CONNER MCLEOD
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew.
    what about when the system completely fails the paying parent? the mother of my now 27yr old son in nz falsified documents lied under oath and was awarded an order now the debt is almost $200K csa know of these facts and still do nothing. I am a sole parent of 2 children both with disabilities i myself suffer depression and the system does not want to help at all. CSA tell me if i want to fight i have to go to nz but in the same breath tell me that if i try to leave Australia, a dpo will be placed against me, then they tell me that i need a lawyer and, in the sentence, tell me that they will be taking my tax returns and taking money from my careers payment, and then tell me to get a job irrelevant that i am raising 2 children on my own, then say that they will take 25% of my wages. Where is the justice in this?? where do i go to for help in this?? twice i have tried to end things but it has been my boys that have always pulled me out of that dark place.
    When did the government care more about another country over their own citizens.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      To work through this, I think you need to separate what is under your control from what is not. Note that there are some personal legal issues here that I’m not in a position to address.

      An order was made in the past and you now have a debt to the other parent. Those seem like things that are fixed and out of your control. If you’re not planning to take legal action on the order (such as seeking compensation), then you may need to move on psychologically. Undoing the past may not be part of the equation.

      The reality is that CSA is going to continue trying to claw back the debt. While you may be deeply unhappy about this, you may need to accept that earning an income will come with a greater penalty than just normal taxation.

  21. ANITA
    | Reply

    My partner has been divorced/separated from kids mother for 9 years. He recieved MRKA lumpsum and CSA has now changed his income from 89,000 to 140,000 for her and 213,000 from 89,000 for the fling he had. Some lump sums cannot be treated as income and MRKA is one. How can csa keep getting away with this unjust unfair criminal behaviour reducing vets to suicide. My partner is back there because of them. He is so injured, so depressed and let down.
    This is obsurd considering his Army wage was always round 55,000 for many years and that was good enough for all 4 kids, but now not for 3….

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      If this was an income adjustment not tied to a Change of Assessment, he can put in an income estimate for the 2022-23 financial year to effectively over-ride the adjustment.

      But I’m guessing it’s not, in which case: The System is Rigged!

  22. Lin
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,
    I completely agree on what you said about the system is unfair by rewarding the bad and punishing the good.

    I separated this March from my ex-partner and my 2 year and 9 month daughter is with me 7 days a week, and seeing her father 7 hours per week. I applied for the child support in May and provided them with the estimated income for both him and I, and after they checked with him, he lowered his estimate for his income by over $20000, so CSA accepted his estimate and calculated the amount accordingly. At the end of last month, I received new assessment notices from CS and it shows that his actually taxable income for the past financial year is $27000 higher than his estimate, so I contacted CS to check if he needs to make up for the monthly amount he paid me, but no, the system is fine with his estimate because his estimate for last financial was only applicable for two month since my application. Now he has claimed that he has no income for the next financial year, and I felt like the system is really encouraging this kind of behaviour and dishonest by not punishing them. If my ex-partner is a good man I would probably believe that he has difficulties paying, but he has the money to take me to court for custody, yet doesn’t want to pay the child support for his daughter. So I felt completely disappointed and betrayed. If there is anything I can do to help change the system, I would love to help.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Thanks Lin. Petty behaviour on his part. He’ll have to pay the correct amount eventually. Putting in low estimates all the time doesn’t work. It will also backfire if his income goes up since the assessment will be based on the current year instead of the previous one.

  23. Unfair
    | Reply

    Hi,
    I am wanting to make more parents aware and more importantly, I am wanting to help change this bullshit system. I am a mother of now 3 children. My 2nd child is 13 to whom I pay his father maintenance although we have a 50/50 care arrangement. I am currently on maternity leave from my full-time job at our local hospital. My ex husband (father of my 2nd child) found satisfaction in me paying him child support through my pregnancy and still now paying.. He purposely does NOT want to work although he is quite able to do so Because he receives enough from Centrelink AND my child support! I am so sick of paying for my ex husbands drug and alcohol habit! What an unfair- broken system 😤

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Correct. System rewards bad behaviour and punishes good. You should put in an income estimate ASAP if you expect your taxable income to be lower this financial year than last year (e.g. if you take some extra leave on half pay or something).

  24. Liz
    | Reply

    Hi, the father of my two children has outright refused to pay child support since he put intense pressure on me to have a “private arrangement.” he has not worked and doesn’t receive Centrelink however, oddly enough, the Child support assessment that I received two weeks ago shows his income to be well over $150 000 a year for 2020-2021. I am at a loss with it because I don’t know why they are sending this information to me now and what I can do about it as I have also gotten a debt from Centrelink as they think I have been receiving vast amounts of child support “income” and not declaring it! WTF! Aside from submitting an application to change from the private arrangement to an organised collection and requesting the backpay me what they can, I don’t feel like I have any way to sort this mess out- I am positive he does not have any income, and his family have confirmed this also. I am positive something sketchy is going on here, but according to Centrelink and the ATO, all income amounts are official, so what do I do?

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      You don’t have to manage your ex. Just control what you can.

      Until you learn otherwise, assume he came into a lot of money in 2020-21. That would have made him liable to pay large amounts during 2021-22 if he didn’t put in an income estimate for that year.

      The move to have Services Australia collect is a good one. If you also tell them that you’ve received nothing from him, they’ll probably accept that you haven’t received anything. He would need to prove otherwise. You could share bank records if they want evidence. Hopefully, they’ll adjust your Family Tax Benefit (FTB) Part A assessment accordingly.

      For collecting unpaid amounts, they can go back 3 months normally or up to 9 months in exceptional circumstances (refer here: https://guides.dss.gov.au/child-support-guide/5/1/4#exceptionalcircs When were you alerted that he was meant to pay you a large amount? The timing could be important.

  25. Brodie
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,

    I am currently the payer and have been progressively been earning higher income year on year while the payee decided to go back to part time work after we separated.

    Our custody is 50/
    50 however the disparity in income is vast and growing.

    Each year I receive a new income support estimate from CSA and dread the increase I have to pay as I know it isn’t being spent on my daughter.

    One method I have looked at as a double edge sword is a pre-tax salary sacrificied charitable donation.

    Do you know if this pre tax deduction is excluded from your gross income when determining the child support payment?

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Yes – you can donate to charity, reduce your assessable income and thereby lower how much child support you’re required to pay. Services Australia don’t add charitable donations back to your adjusted income.

      It’s not complicated. You can simply make a donation to a registered charity, keep the receipt(s) and claim the deduction with your next tax return. See the tips here: https://childsupportaustralia.com/avoid-paying-legally/

      Salary sacrificing means you’ll have more disposable income after making the donation, as opposed to waiting to receive a refund after submitting your tax return.

  26. T
    | Reply

    Hi, I have a partner who has 2 children of his own with his previous partner of 7 years, he financially supported her and his children the whole time, after separation he received a letter of debt, his previous partner told child support they were never together and that he never paid, any help would be appreciated thank you kind regards

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      This seems like a matter of just providing appropriate evidence. Your partner needs to state in simple terms what the care and financial arrangements were and then provide evidence. An affidavit from a witness may be useful, along with emails, text messages, bills and any other relevant documents.

  27. Bonno
    | Reply

    Hi i ensure i lodge my tax and pay my CS monthly as required but i just received an assessment from CSA where it states from Oct 22 im paying 5 x the amount of CS i normally pay …no reason and the calculations dont make sense or add up as neither my nor my ex cicumstances have changed at all both have same income ect so i called CSA and unfortunately got lucifer to dpeak to and asked why they assessed me for 5 x the normal/required amount when neither my or the exs circumstances have changed and given this how they concluded i need to pay 5 x more CS? I also stated how the ex can get away with never having to put a tax return in and CSA are good with a provisional income amount/ info from her when i di all the right things required of me and you CSA harass me for nothing ..this is clearly discrimination and harassment is it not ..how can they lie to lure me into contacting them off the back of fraudulent information from them demand 5 x more money from me based on no reason at all

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Services Australia don’t make up stuff or do things for no reason. Not saying that they’re always fair and reasonable but there is normally some sort of logic behind what they do. I can’t answer this unless you provide more specific information.

  28. Anon
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew,
    I’m in the process of separating and work part-time and my ex is retired and receives a superannuation income stream. He receives over $1000 more than me per fortnight, however, for the last financial year, the taxable element of the income stream is showing as about half of my taxable income. How is child support calculated in this instance? Is the untaxed element and tax free component of his income stream used as part of his annual income amount to calculate child support or just the taxable element? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      I believe superannuation payments or drawdowns that don’t count as taxable income also don’t count as income for child support purposes.

      In the information about adjusted taxable income (here: https://guides.dss.gov.au/child-support-guide/2/4/4/10), there appears to be no mention of super payments received.

      The lack of attention to this issue may be for two reasons I can think of: (1) it’s fairly unusual for someone involved in child support to be retired and (2) super is something that you’ve already paid tax on, meaning you should be free to use it however one wants.

      Unsure how an application for a change of assessment would go in this case. Maybe you could ask that he contribute a little more outside of child support, though he may respond that his super has to last for the rest of his life.

  29. Ale
    | Reply

    Hi there,

    I’m currently working out a consent order for property settlement. I’m willing to support my ex partner through spousal maintenance paying half of her rent for a maximum period of 2 years. Would that be considered spousal maintenance?

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Spousal maintenance doesn’t directly related to child support. So the question is a little of bounds. Instead of paying half her rent, why don’t you pay a certain cash amount each month and call it spousal maintenance payments? That would be simpler and clearer. You can say it relates to rent if you want but there’s no need for you to stay involved in her rental situation.

  30. David
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew
    I’ve emerged from a protracted and isolating separation from ex wife and 15year old child. I was ambushed a year ago when they decided I was worth 4 nights a YEAR and have been trying to re-establish a relationship with my daughter. Even now it seems to be on their terms.
    Now she is getting older additional items to BFA are popping up (16 year old parties, drivers learner permit and lessons,passports) with a proposal of 50:50 split of costs.
    I’m already paying substantial amounts and feel they want a relationship with my money and not me. I’m very inclined to say additional costs are shared per the level of care…hence 1% me and 99% them.
    Compromised…..

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Well, you don’t have to pay for anything. That’s the starting point. If the mother wants more money in this case, she’ll have to offer something in return.

  31. Baz
    | Reply

    Hi i got a question ?

    What happens to me when the mother of my son has another baby takes time off work. How does that affect my payments i feel i’m going to get screwed over cause she wasn’t working and will have to pay extra or does the income she would get from the other Parent come into it ?

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Parents are free to reduce their work hours when new children arrive. And they face no penalty for continuing to do so after the children have started school.

  32. Anon
    | Reply

    A bit of an odd one – why is child support in Australia called child support?

    I’ve gone digging, but cannot for the life of me find out where it is stated that a receipient of child support is obligated to spend that money for the benefit of the child, or on anything at all.

    Is it a relic from some past era when the money was required to be spent for the child’s benefit?

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      “Child support” sounds better than “other parent support”. The people who seem most confused about this are politicians and bureaucrats. They love making people pay more child support because they think they’re helping children by getting behind this cause. But the terribly low incomes of parents involved with the child support scheme prove otherwise. Child support tends to make children poorer.

  33. Censer
    | Reply

    Hi,
    I’m wondering if you can advise about late payment penalties.
    When any payment is made on a case with late payment penalties, does the payment first come off the child support debt (i.e. go to the payee) or go towards the LPP? e.g. $300 debt plus $50 LPP. If I pay $100, what does the account look like now? $200 debt plus $50 LPP or $250 debt plus $0 LPP? Or some other method? Thanks

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      LPP = Late payment penalty.

      These are payable to the Registrar, not the other parent. You can often have them removed if you do a deal with the debt collection people at the Dept of Social Services.

  34. Dan
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew I’m paying child support but only half of what I got assessed because I cannot afford it, my child is in Philippines and I’m planning to visit her this year. Would Child Support issue DPO even though my destination is the country where my child lives. Im paying monthly but still have arrears as I only send what I can afford.

  35. anon
    | Reply

    Hi Andrew thanks for your forum.

    I wanted to share something with everybody.

    this article appeared in the newspaper in April.

    Baby bust: Victoria’s birth rate hovers near its lowest in history

    https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/baby-bust-victoria-s-birth-rate-hovers-near-its-lowest-in-history-20220413-p5ad49.html

    The author of the article does not recognise that parents who are financially, emotionally, physically able to have children are not having children after their first child was stolen from them for example my case in point.

    The author is avoiding this issue – I’m not sure whether it is intentional or it was a genuine and innocent omission.

    But in my case after my child was stolen by the woman and by the enabling woke political class of Australia, I will not have anymore children nor will I take on another man’s seed. I’m avoiding being step daddy at all costs.

    I recommend to all men not to be step daddy’s under the current woke political and legal system.

    With due respect to the genuine traditional women and men out there – men, don’t become step daddy’s, until women themselves takedown the family court one brick at a time, abolish no fault divorce and change the legal system to make it patriarchal, as it has been for all of human history.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Being raised by a single mother is often damaging for children. That’s just a fact that numerous studies have shown. I also think you’re right that this phenomenon may contribute to lower birth rates overall. Men are too easily discarded and exploited these days. Comes down to a lack of respect for what men contribute, are capable of, and deserve in terms of equal rights.

  36. Jim
    | Reply

    HI Andrew
    Do you think the alternative calculation will ever be adopted by child support ?. Also I’m a health care worker who has worked many extra shifts because of staff shortages and covid a hospitals being at breaking point. My income for the last financial years includes quite a bit of overtime. Would this allow me to change of assessment for last financial year considering my income is higher because of the health crisis.

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      I’m actually waiting for super-intelligent AI to take over the government and introduce a new formula. I bet it will look a lot closer to what we’ve proposed than what’s there at the moment. In other words, I wouldn’t bank on reform happening any time soon.

  37. Anon
    | Reply

    I have been advised from a source my ex who I pay full child support to is doing cash in hands job so this won’t go on her tax return. I can’t get evidence so is there nothing I can do whatsoever? she looking around $100 a day 5 days a week

    • Andrew Lancaster (admin)
      | Reply

      Correct – there’s nothing you can do about her undeclared income.

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