Hi All, this is my first post to this board, but I am in need of some advice.
I have been divorced for 13 years now, after I exited a highly toxic and dangerous relationship. My ex has engaged in fraudulent activity, taking out loans in joint names and forging my signature, as well as claiming single parent benefits secretly whilst I was still in the marital home. I was physically abused whilst married, and have had threats since I left.
For this reason I have reluctantly had to disengage completely and have had no contact with my daughter for over 6 years.
My problem relates to maintenence. I have consistently paid through the CSA at a rate of around £550 per month - my daughter will be 18 in May, and I have no way of finding out if she is still in full time education. I know that if I instruct the CSA to establish whether she is, they will contact my ex wife and simply ask her. Clearly she will tell them that she is, whether this is true or not. I tried this on my daughters 16th birthday and this was the process the CSA followed. It resulted in my elderly parents being subjected to a barrage of insults by my ex wife, so I am reluctant to try this again.
Would anyone know how I can establish the education status of my daughter? The only way I can think of is to hire a private investigator!
To be honest, I don't think the benefits office will tell you (GDPR didn't help, but even before that they weren't helpful) and it's also unlikely your daughter's college will tell you, even if you know where she is. Do you know when your daughter would be doing her A levels as that would generally be the age when she ends non advanced education, though not necessarily. There is no easy answer, but I would certainly prepare yourself for any abuse in any event - including your parents blocking all communication if that's practical.
Thank you all, for your words of advice - I have established a few things, some surprising, but only word of mouth, which I dont think the CSA would entertain...
Apparently they are operating the well known scam of enrolling on a course, attending for a few weeks then dropping out.. my daughter enrolled last September and stopped going in October. She did this in the previous year also.
More surprisingly, I was sent a screen shot taken recently from her Facebook page, showing a picture of her first 12 week scan, so baby on the way at 17..
It may seem cold of me, but I am fully expecting this to be the next step in the rinsing process.
I am considering talking to a solicitor, and am trying to find one who specialises in supporting fathers with CSA appeals, would anyone know if such a person exists?
After being taken for a ride for so many years this is a matter of principle....
I don't know of any to hand, but I would add a word of warning, that your matter of principle - however understandable - could end up costing you more than the potential maintenance if you win, and make it even worse for you if you don't.