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Is this right? Mother working but not declaring

The mother is working, and has been since August last year (that we know of, but we don't know where, she is not forthcomming with info). The letter has her as not earing anything (except government benifits). We are sure she is working full time. So her

Ok so DP just received the new CSA assesment. It all looks right expect one part.

The mother is working, and has been since August last year (that we know of, but we don't know where, she is not forthcomming with info). The letter has her as not earing anything (except government benifits). We are sure she is working full time. So her wage would impact the CSA amounts as it would be above the self supported amount.

Is this right? do we have to wait until she puts in a tax return (if and when she does)?

Can we do a COA based on her earning now? If so should we do it right now or wait until the end of July?
My Husband is in the same situation: she is working full time but was not working at all the previous year.

The C$A have basically told us that you pay the same amount until a new tax return is submitted.

The same also goes for care of children.  For 4 months she denied him contact of the children, until he went to court go get his access back.

The C$A still made him pay the full support for the remainder of the year, as the 4 months he couldn't see the kids denied him of the 'substantial care' for the year.

I have shared care of my son and I have to pay my ex support as he claims $0 income on tax returns.  How is this possible?
I thought that after 2 weeks, you had to notify C$A of your change in circumstances. This includes starting a job.

This decreases benefits, but I'm not sure what the earning capacity would have to be, before it changed the requirement to pay child support.

My partner does not earn enough to get above self-support, so he pays the minimum.

Our ex has allegedly started work - some days properly, other days cash in hand.

I'm in a bit of a bind about what to do about this. I would appreciate ideas too.

Reading the new C$A website does my head in….

Junior Executive of SRL-Resources

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (Look for the Avatars). Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
Although a private detective would be out of the reach of most people many of these institutions work on presented evidence.

Would they not appreciate visual information of someone fraudulently receiving benefits, weather it is Social Security payment or FTB A or B.

As I'm sure the Tax department would have an interest.

I guess self detection would be an option the only barrier is if it is what you want.

My X and her boyfriend have a complicated financial situation to reduce CSA payments by both parties, for myself it just wasn't and isn't worth the hassle to try and expose any foul play, even though I think it unjust.
Lodge a fraud complaint with Centrelink.  They have to investigate regardless.

The more information you can provide the better.

Ask her friends where she works; pretend you need to contact her urgently. You be surprised what people will unknowingly spill.

If she has child/children residing with her and receives family tax benefit and has been earning income and not declaring it then jail time is a possibility. I personally know of a case where the income amount earned was huge and the mother spent time in prison.

Also is it possible to ask your son/daughter or step son/daughter where mum works?
My ex works cash in hand and has done so since we split.  This effectively reduces his income, so I have to pay him child support.

I have informed both Centrelink AND the CSA and was told without proof there is nothing they can do.

I believe Centrelink met with him and believed his lies. The CSA also intimated that it wasn't worth the bother.

When you are swimming down a creek and an eel bites your cheek, that's a Moray.
Thanks for the replies.

Can't ask DSS, he has just turned 2 today. Can't ask friends, as they wont talk to DP and he doesn't have their contact details.

DP is the payer, and i had a play around with the calculator, and if she is earning money like we belive, it will impact on how much DP has to pay, not by a lot, but i think it still needs to be taken into account anyway, it's only fair.

As for 'dobbing'  her into centrelink, apparently someone done that last year shortly after she started work, and she abused us saying we were the ones who dobbed. We didn't, but wish we knew who did, maybe they could tell us where she is working.

We only found out she was working cause DP rang her house to talk to her and her mother (she lives at home) told DP she was still at work. So we don't know how long she had been working before we found out. And she refuses to tell us where she works or even what type of work she does.
Miacat there are plenty of people out there who see it as their civic duty to report people who commit fraud as well as those who have axe's to grind.

It has been suggested to myself when I once inquired to DSS that the opposing X partners information is viewed as grievance until another source reports similar actions by the person committing the fraud. ( Not officially of course ).

Many times friends find they side with one partner due to the alienation inflicted on them by the other, and even if they discover the truth there is still loyalty to the other person as they see them as the victim. So more than not the option is not availible.

You may have to follow her to work or at least have someone do so, once located you can ring and ask for this person after she has left, when ask if you wish to leave a message simply say you'll ring her at home.

Remembering that DSS may already know this information and she may well be under the financial thresh hold concerning pay. If the employer is paying cash in hand she may well be under an assumed identity.

Which ever way it goes it will take a commitment on the part of you or your partner to obtain the proof if possible at all.

when ever there is a way to fraud the system people will find it, it's usually the ones who are trying to be honest who get caught for a minor slip up.

Best of luck
You could, as part of the mediation process, ask her where the child is when she is at work.

A reasonable question. As a parent, your partner is entitled to know the care arrangements.

She will either say "I don't work". In which case, you may find some proof down the track that she was working. This will go towards showing her lack of credibility.


she may say "I do work, but my Mum looks after him". In which case, this goes toward a lack of facilitation and shared parenting responsibility as she should have advised you of this.

These are all bricks to build a wall to support your case.

Junior Executive of SRL-Resources

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (Look for the Avatars). Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
She sends him to day care at least 4 days of the week, if not all five.

Apparently her mother takes care of him on Fridays. But she nevers tells us if anything changes, so we have no idea if this is still so.

He gets dropped off early morning and is not picked up by her until at least 6pm. DP isn't allowed to pick him up as in her words 'they are my friends' (reffering to the people who work at the centre). And this is the reason for denying more time, she only gets 2 hours on weeknights with him at the moment cause she has to work.

So we are sure she is working, we are sure she sends DSS to day care 4-5 days per week.

When she started working she did not tell us, when she started sending DSS to day care more often then the apparent one day per week she did not tell us. It was only by chance that we found out.

We are already putting all our bricks together, that wall is getting bigger and bigger each day. We just hope it will hold up at the examination day.

But that is off track now. So should we ask CSA to re-verify with her about her earning details? Should we do a COA?

There seems to be a lot more information available that you haven't spoken about. The statement about only getting two hours with him is this on record written or otherwise?

If it is then it would be advisable to share this information with all relevant authorities especially if it is a written response to a letter or transcribed from a recorded phone conversation.

Because she has limited time due to work commitments will not be an adequate excuse and may well determine if she can use legal aid representation.

If you know what daycare he is going to include this in the information you provide as well as the Gran's involvement in his care.

Government investigation go a long way when looking towards credibility especially if you receive CSA information about her earnings and such.

To clarify the use of DSS in my earlier post Department of Social Security.
I see no reason why not to ask for a COA.

She's already being difficult to deal with? If so, then there's nothing left to lose.

She may bleat about how mean you're being at mediation. Just be prepared for that, and make sure DP says that he is happy to pay CS, it just needs to be fair.

Junior Executive of SRL-Resources

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (Look for the Avatars). Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
Yeah there is lots of info, trying to not put out too much just in case the sharks are swimming, don't want to get my legs bitten off at the moment. At least not till the wall has passed it's examination date.

Her saying she is only getting two hours a day with him because of work came out when they sat down to try and re-do the current consent orders. So DP has noted this and it will be a part of his affidavit so he can get more time and 'tighter' orders. Actually you gave me an idea. Getting her to commit to all this in writing may be even better again. I am sure she would put what she said in writing not realising what it could do.

Yeah we do know what day care he goes to. So long as she hasn't changed it without telling us. And the way I see it, if he is in care while living with her, why can't he be in care (and it would be for shorter hours) and live with DP.

As for the government investigations, we do know that she was investigated by Centrelink last year after she started work, and she was mightily pissed about it, leading us to believe she had in fact done something wrong. Is there anyway we could find out more, without having to ask her as there is no way she would tell us? Can we use this in anyway in mediation/court? to help prove how she lies and has issues telling the truth?
Cool. Probably best to hang back on some things till you get time sorted.

The idea is to let her know that you've been told you have to put a prospective plan to her in writing and if she could reply in writing where the problems are cool. Let her fill in the blanks and if she chooses not to reply you have proof that you have already started to negotiate.

Government Departments will only show you your personal file and this will contain any communication that has been sent to them minus identification.

I was told this and said " Well she'd know where the info came from and this would effect contact with my daughter can't you investigate with out this " they said no.

To use it in court unless it was to establish this is normal behaviour as a past event reflecting on information that you have now obtained would accomplish little and may even be seen as nit picking, although if you establish this fact in mediation and pressure to find out the times she works you may find the mediator encouraging her to tell the truth, she will feel pressured and may well just up and leave mediation, of course it's important that you let the mediator know you feel this time when the child is in care could be better managed in your environment and suggest an extension of time.

This of course is only opinion of one of the many ways you may be able to use situations to your advantage there will be another 50+ members with other ideas and opinions.
Thanks. So I have done a draft letter (we were going to just go straight to mediation, had already started to arrange without tell her just yet, but i think it could be worth getting her to put this in writing first) and have specified a two week time frame to reply within.

The letter just encloses our proposed orders (with some space/lines for her to write below, trying to make this as easy as possible for her, lol)., and asked her to read, make any changes she prefers, sign bottom of each page, return within the two weeks and outline why she wants her changes, and asks if she has anything else that has not already been covered to be included.

Should this be OK (it's more coherent in the letter, lol)? Should i giver her the space below each of our orders, or just ask for her to list why ours is no good and for her to do her own orders and send them to us to look at?

We would really prefer to keep this out of court, hence why we keep trying for the re-do of the consent orders. Plus there is a wait for mediation at the moment anyway, so while we are waiting might as well put that time to good use.

Also the distance between the two houses would require the child to attend two different day care facilities (the one near her house, and one near our house), how likely is this? The facility near our house is very close to DP work, and would mean DP could drop him off later and pick him up earlier. DP would really like week day contact as well, but the distance has been the only thing stopping us till now.
Sometimes you can oversimplify things to the point that you edge out what you are trying to achieve.

If you were working with someone who was truly interested in sorting things out a letter in the format you suggest would be a good idea.


You risk the letter being sent back not filled out and not signed, my X took exception to signing anything.

So instead of giving options I simply started drafting letters that requested a reply in regards to how things might be changed.

Keep it simple and focus on what you are trying to achieve while allowing the rope to get longer.

Remember there are only alternate ways of dealing with the same problem and you know best the situation and what will work best for you.

So don't take this as advice but rather see if there is anything that benefits you and build it for your situation.

Personally I love the committal to a response that allows people to show there true colours.

Best of luck D4E
Thanks. It's always good to hear a fresh view on the options i can take, and from someone who has already been there as well.

Thanks everyone. We have a plan of action, and feel much more hopful now. Makes it easier when you know what your going to do next to achive the outcome your after.
Sorry Lifeinsight i should have explained myself more clearly.  My ex's tax return literally reads $0 taxable income.  Now he works full time and has for years, the loophole is he works for family.  The $0 also means that he gets no kind of benefit such as Newstart or pension.  So yes i find it hard to believe that he can survive on no money and i pay him child support for shared care because his living situation is worse off than mine.  He owns a home and 2 cars so he isnt doing so bad.

On that note My husbands ex, as i stated previously also works full time ( for her family) and claims full pension for single parent with 3 children (1 not my husbands). She also gets child support on her previous year income and because she wasn't working due to having another baby it is a lot higher.  We also have 38% care per year of his children.

What we are both waiting on now is to see what there new tax returns are this year.  Whether they are claiming an income honestly or not.

After reading these posts i realise that most of us are in the same situation with payee's hiding their income.  Will a COA even be helpful as both ex's are getting an income off their family and of course if they investigate this then the family is bound to back them up by hiding their true income.

All information and opinions on this topic have been very helpful does anyone have any idea's on how to get them to fess up? (i know i am dreaming)
Well one way I have seen work is to be around them for extended time, be friendly and make them comfortable with you. People like to brag and often talk more when they are in a fast running conversation meaning they are likely to slip up in a minor way. But usually there is little you can do with the information as they are only minor slips and hear say.

There are too many legal ways to hide income and because of this they are not breaking the law nor will they be on the radar.

Good luck I hope you find something you can use to achieve balance.
People who feel they are "getting one over" as our ex calls it often brag about it. This will be to friends, neighbours or possibly online, if they are the internet savvy type.

I have seen one judgement where the Dad had a grass cutting business - mostly cash in hand. The Mum produced ads from the local paper, a picture of his ute with a vinyl sign advertising his business and then produced the rego details showing he owned the car.

For the ex who has 0 income, he probably has a family trust, but CSA can look into this, even with a family trust they can usually work out some income. It would pay you to look through the austlii database and use keywords like "hiding income" "family trust" and so on.

Happy hunting. Keep your eyes open, cross your fingers and hopefully some information will drop in your lap.

Junior Executive of SRL-Resources

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (Look for the Avatars). Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
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