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Multi-Case Confusion... Or maybe I'm just confused in general?

Why are the assessment periods different? And what the hell are CSA doing?

Hi friends! I'm incredibly confused and was hoping to tap into some much needed expertise….

We have two CSA cases. One is privately paid and one is paid via CSA to a payee who resides overseas. DH was made redundant last year and lodged an income estimate of $0 five months after his redundancy. The new assessment came through ok, and it reflected his current earnings of $0 but it was only assessed at this amount for two months (the estimate was only valid for two months - from May 2013 when he notified them to July 2014). Another assessment was made for the new (2013) financial year at the same time the income estimate was reported, with his taxable income being the same as the previous year, with his previous employer. DH found a job before the end of the financial year but was on a lower wage than the previous job. BUT, unbeknownst to us who knew nothing of the golden "15%" rule, because it was less than the 15% required to allow a new income estimate, the previous estimate the CSA pulled out of their nether regions was upheld and we had to lodge the tax return in a hurry to get the taxable income which included the redundancy payout, to be able to change the assessment to reflect his correct income because the redundancy blew his "income" out by double. I'm giving myself a headspin just trying to explain it!!! Soooo….. he called the CSA today and was told that the income estimate he is now providing will not come into effect until October. I'm confused. Why? Shouldn't it take into effect the day you notify CSA? And why does the assessment period vary between the private and non-private cases? For example, the new assessment based on his earnings including his redundancy take effect in October for the agency paid case, and in September for the privately paid case? I'm so confused that my head is spinning and I can't tell if it's the wine I've been drinking or the head***k that the CSA have so kindly given me??

Any help would be appreciated. Another bottle of wine would be appreciated too…..
I suspect that the second option (regarding section 60(5)(b)) has been used:

The Child Support Guide - 2.5.1: Income estimates for a year of income said

Start date

The start date of the election for a part year estimate must be either:

    the day on which the parent makes the election (section 60(5)(a)); or
    the first day of a child support period, so long as that day is not before the day the parent makes the election (section 60(5)(b)).


M contacts Child Support on 26 August to advise that they lost their job on 15 August. M wants to estimate their income for the remainder of the year of income. The start date of their income estimate election is 26 August, the day they made their election.


M received a new assessment for a child support period beginning 1 October 2010. M calls Child Support on 26 September 2010 to advise that their current income is less than that used in the new assessment. As M expects to continue earning at their current income M elects to make an income estimate for the new child support period. The start date of their election is the first day of the new child support period, 1 October 2010, as that day is not before the day on which M makes the election.

The Child Support Assessment Act 1989 - Section 60(5) said
(5)  The start day for the election must be:

                     (a)  the day on which the parent makes the election; or

                     (b)  the first day of a child support period, so long as that day is not before the day referred to in paragraph (a).
MikeT Does that same section above apply to notification from the Tax office when the other parent has lodged there tax returns. ?
taylor said
MikeT Does that same section above apply to notification from the Tax office when the other parent has lodged there tax returns. ?

The above is specifically for part year income estimates. Off-hand I'm unsure about time constraints in regard to tax returns and the start date of when it is applied. You could always look at the CSA Guide section 2.3 which deals with child support periods.
Thank you MikeT.  :)   I had a look over it and it is correct for the agency paid CSA case and your explanation makes sense. However, for the privately paid, it doesn't make sense. CSA are expecting one month's payment at the higher rate. Either way, the payee is happy with DH's explanation and is happy to accept the lower amount for that month so all good here. Thanks again for your invaluable help. It's always appreciated.  :)
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