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Topic:
Failure to pay child support against future lump sum (10 Posts)
Started By:
Date:
13 February, 2018 11:43AM
Failure to pay child support against future lump sum
lovcat - 13 February, 2018 11:43AM
My husband and I divorced last year and I am the higher earner, though I don't earn a huge amount, hence the need to give him his payouts in two separate sums. I had to remortgage to give him a lump sum then, with a further 10k to paid in 12 years when our youngest is 21. The children stay with him twice a week and, other than the food they eat there, he contributes nothing to their upkeep. He has even sent me messages asking me to bring clothes there for them, though as I have refused he has since bought them a couple of pairs of pants.

He earns very little, but the CSA calculator says he should be paying £17 per week. I have put this to him several times but he never responds. Meanwhile, I am supporting the two children and myself, with a higher mortgage than was previously the case, as well as having to save towards his final payout. My question is, if I failed to pay it, would the fact that he never pays anything towards his children's upkeep be in anyway a mitigating factor were he to take me to court? Or, is there anything I can do about the unfairness of saving up for his future rather than my children's as the settlement has already been approved and states on it that it cannot now be challenged?
Re: Failure to pay child support against future lump sum
davidterry - 13 February, 2018 02:37PM
>>if I failed to pay it, would the fact that he never pays anything towards his children's upkeep be in anyway a mitigating factor were he to take me to court?

No, it wouldn't. Whether you take any action to enforce child maintenance is a matter solely within your control which has nothing to do with any lump sum payable to your ex husband in the future.
Re: Failure to pay child support against future lump sum
lovcat - 13 February, 2018 03:43PM
I thought that would be the case! It's not really in my control if he refuses to ever pay though is it? Stories I've heard are that CSA are pretty useless when people don't pay. I obviously need to make a claim though.
Re: Failure to pay child support against future lump sum
davidterry - 13 February, 2018 05:44PM
If you think you are owed child maintenance and you do nothing to collect it then that would be down to you. It is just like any other debt. You have to weigh up the amount you hope to gain (if anything) against the costs (if any) involved in pursuing it.
Re: Failure to pay child support against future lump sum
lovcat - 15 February, 2018 01:55PM
Fully understand that I need to open a claim but if, as I suspect will happen, he never makes a payment so builds up arrears, would that be taken into account and perhaps be deducted from the amount I would need to pay him. We would effectively owe each other, but which debt would tale precedence?
Re: Failure to pay child support against future lump sum
davidterry - 15 February, 2018 02:22PM
At the moment he doesn't have any liability because you say the CSA calculator says he 'should' be paying £17 a week. What he should be paying is neither here nor there if that potential liability has never been turned into an actual liability. The fact of the matter is that at the moment he owes you precisely nothing.
Re: Failure to pay child support against future lump sum
lovcat - 21 February, 2018 11:03PM
While I fully realise that at the moment he owes me nothing as I haven't made a claim, what I am actually asking is if I do make a claim and he doesn't pay, will that be taken into account if I don't pay the lump sum ? I do realise I'm talking hypothetically, and if the CSA/CM people say he doesn't have to pay, or has to pay even less than I think he might have to then my point will be a moot one. However, at the moment I am having to pay for absolutely everything for our children while saving for his lump sum and I am just wondering whether that would be taken into account if and when it comes to a point when I have to hand over a considerable sum of money to him having supported the children for 15 years on my own.

It goes without saying, surely, that if I don't make a claim then there won't be anything for anyone to take into account. If he starts paying it will also be irrelevant. But if I make a claim and he has to pay and he doesn't, will that have any bearing at all on the money I owe him?
Re: Failure to pay child support against future lump sum
jill_of_all_trades - 22 February, 2018 10:59AM
I'd worry about the £10,000 in 12 years time. You don't say how old you are but another £10,000 remortgage in 12 years time would seem to be the way to go. If in 12 years time your circumstances are such that is not an option then let him take you to court for something you can't pay.

Any savings you can manage on your income really need to be kept for the odd treat for your children and any large unexpected expenses like a new boiler.
Re: Failure to pay child support against future lump sum
davidterry - 22 February, 2018 11:00AM
>>But if I make a claim and he has to pay and he doesn't, will that have any bearing at all on the money I owe him?

No.

If the CSA assesses that he has a liability and he does not pay then ultimately they will pursue him for the arrears. That would be between him and the CSA. What you owe him is between you and him. The two are not related.
Re: Failure to pay child support against future lump sum
davidterry - 22 February, 2018 11:08AM
>>If in 12 years time your circumstances are such that is not an option then let him take you to court for something you can't pay.

I wouldn't recommend that as a course of action in these circumstances. Assuming nothing changes about interest (and it hasn't for more years than I can remember) that £10,000 will bear interest at 8% from the date it became payable to the time it is paid. Also, he would be entitled to the costs of the application. These costs and interest could quickly make this amount escalate in quite a dramatic way.

Generally speaking when a person has an asset such as a house it is always worth suing for a debt. Even if a court doesn't order a sale of the house to pay the debt it would be a simple matter to put a charging order on it for the capital sum plus interest (at 8%) and costs. The owner of the house is then left in the invidious position of either defaulting on the mortgage and seeing the house repossessed or for the creditor to be the main (perhaps sole) beneficiary of any future increase in equity in the property. Neither of these options are likely to be attractive to the debtor.
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