Hi. I would be interested to hear from parents who work shifts and can't have their children for overnight stays as a result of having to work.
I have now become part of the new cms which has replaced the csa and qualify for the lower payment as I have my child the statutory 52 nights of the year. The problem is my ex wife disputes this, and the cms want me to prove that I have my child 52 nights. Which incidentally I have no intentions of doing as I went through the same situation with the csa and nearly ended up taking my own life.
As I work constant night shift to a rota I can't have my child every week and can't synchronise my days off with schooling etc. However I do have him during school holidays for more more than one night.
My ex wife. Knows about this flaw in the system and takes full advantage.
I do have my son lots during the day so I would think the cms/ csa should base their criteria on an hourly rate rather than an unfair overnight rate. It isn't always possible to see your children if you have to work shifts and this system discriminated against these parents and stops the choices and rights of the children involved.
I have wrote to my MP who is takingbthis further and I would think it could go as far as the European court of human rights. Let me know your thoughts.
Where there is a dispute between parents and there is no Court order (common situation) the CMS can default to a "reduction for shared care equal to 1 night per week", which is what you are saying you qualify for anyway.
The relevant legislation is here: The Child Support Maintenance Calculation Regulations 2012, SI 2012/2677 (CMCR)
CMCR regulation 47 paragraph (2) states (with my additions underlined, and my emphasis in bold):
a) the parties (you and your ex) agree in principle that the care of a qualifying child is to be shared during the period mentioned in regulation (the next 12 months from the start date of the CMS case, basically); but
b) there is insufficient evidence to make that determination on the basis set out in regulation 46(4) (for example because the parties have not yet agreed the pattern or frequency or the evidence as to a past pattern is disputed)
the Secretary of State may make the decision on the basis of an assumption that the non-resident parent is to have the care of the child overnight for one night per week.
You should point this out the CMS - and show this to you MP also. I would also put it to the CMS in writing, and ask them if they "have proof that you have overnight care for less than 52 nights". If they do not have proof, and you are saying that you "do" have overnight care for more than 52 nights - then this is a "dispute".
Hi thanks for the advice.
Unfortunately you haven't told me anything I didn't already know.
Personally I am happy to make my payments. Yes I do qualify for a reduction but my ex is disputing the number of overnight stays using the fact that I work nights so how is it possible. The thing is I have my son 3-4 nights a week over his school holidays. My ex knows the discriminatory flaw in the system and uses it to her full advantage. I have been through the same thing with the csa and. Almost took my own life. I don't intend to go through that again. My thoughts lie with other parents who are discriminated against for working shifts and can't synchronise night with their child.
I can understand where you are coming from, by having your son during the day can cost as much if not more than having him over night with doing things to keep him entertained ect, there does seem to be a flaw in the system in cases like yours, and your ex is playing the system, knowing that you can't possibly prove that you reach the 52 nights required each year to gain the reduction in CMS payments.
It wouuld be interesting to hear what your MP has to say.