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  1. #1
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    Default Child Support - advice needed

    Hi all,

    This is my first post so hopefully it's right.

    Just wondered what child support actually covers?

    My ex and I finalised our divorce early last year & I had initially offered her the house, car, boat, etc (all fully paid off) and suggested that I start again with my business (I own my own small business and work 60 - 70 hours per week & she worked as the book keeper, a role that was approx 15 - 20 hours per week). She wasn't happy with this suggestion and unfortunately we ended up at mediation.

    Long story short and a huge amount of lawyer costs later she ended up with exactly what I had offered; the house, car, boat, etc - absolutely no money owing on anything (she also requested 80% of the super and child support + all costs associated with the children on top of child support, as well as an additional $150k - this is money I do not have - and as book keeper of the business she was well aware of this) - all I requested was that she leave the business so I could start again without her involvement.

    Anyway, in order to stop from going any further through the courts I also offered to pay her $1500 per month for 12 months, but she was to pay all children's expenses with that. I forgot to mention we have 2 children (10 & 8) and share them 50% of the time.

    Whilst we still have about 6 months of this private agreement to go I did have a few questions regarding child support ...

    Firstly, what does child support actually cover? She is telling me I will be up for 50% of all activities & school fees, etc because we have the kids 50% each - is this true? I will be paying her approx $900 per month through CSA and wondered how much more I possibly had to give. I have no problem paying for the kids but I am feeling like I'm being smashed. She only works 2 days a week, while I am 6 - 7 days a week.

    Secondly, I offered to pay for the kids to go to a private school - it won't be easy but I'm willing to try. I just wondered, if I pay 100% of the fees, is she under any obligation to pay for uniforms, books, etc or is the entire thing up to me? Again, she's saying I'd be up for half on top of child support if it was a state school?

    I work hard and I want my kids to have the best of everything, like we all do. But I feel like I'm being taken advantage of and it's really taking it's toll.

    Sorry for the long post & thank you - I would appreciate any advice, information, etc.

  2. #2
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    I'd speak to a lawyer ASAP to get it clarified and also to confirm that the proposed settlement is fair. Child support is meant to cover most things (when the parent receiving the child support has majority custody) but as you have 50/50 custody then each parent is responsible for 50% of school stuff, etc. To me this part of what your ex is saying sounds correct. Child support is quite a bit more if you have less than 50% custody. This is my understanding anyway. Sorry if that's not the answer you'd hoped to hear. Have you had a look at an online child support calculator to check that what you're paying is correct?

  3. #3
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    Try and give cs a call and ask for advice. I would recommend you speak to a solicitor for correct information. Nsw may have different cs guidelines, but my husband only pays cs and nothing more. The cs is based on both patents taxable incomes and percentage that each parent has the children. If you reduce your taxable income your cs will reduce. I would recommend that you don't agree to anything other than paying for cs. It appears that your ex wants to take you for everything. You don't want your kids to miss out but if it's like our situation the money goes on other things than the kids. Good luck it's a horrible situation especially with your business involved.

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  5. #4
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    Hi,
    I have 50/50 shared care with my DD's father. I pay him child support as I'm the higher wage earner. We also share all other costs 50/50, such as school fees etc.
    Without knowing your circumstances, your settlement costs seem awfully high!
    Best of luck.

  6. #5
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    We have also got a 50/50 arrangement and have spent a lot on legal fees also surrounding these issues. Child support actually covers everything school related except for the extras like excursions, swimming etc. all books and school fees should be included in this unless it is a private school and you have a different agreement. Uniforms are not included and things like backpacks, lunch boxes etc.

    Private agreements can be taken into account by CSA if it is agreed by both parties to send the kids to private school and then you may well be up for 50% fees and everything school related BUT CSA may decrease your child support payments. If she doesn't agree and you still send them to private school then you will most likely be accountable for all costs associated. You will need to agree between the 2 of you.

    If the children stay at public school, you do not need to pay for half everything school related- that is what CSA say child maintenance is for, but you do need to pay half of the extras. Sorry but I do think you are being taken for a ride! I would highly recommend seeking legal advice before going to any more mediation regarding this.


 

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