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Arrears $$$$ owing due to COA.

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Hi guys thought I would start a new topic for this one. When I checked my C$A online it informs me that I owe in Sep $thousands$ but I have not recieved any letters in the mail yet. Yesterday afternoon obviously my ex got her letter before me. 'fancy that guys'. I only know this as C$A rang to ask me 'what my plans were regarding paying it' (my ex wants it now as its her money not mine) C$A informed me of this and also that its a lot of money and that my ex needs it.

After explaining to them that I have not even recieved my letter with any reasons as to why this debt is so high I said that I have nothing to say until I recieve it. I guess I am a really pleased with myself. Handled call well. But am concerned as because this debt has been made by COA in one day and I do want to pay it off asap (dont want ex to start with all this again) but I dont want C$A to assume I earn more $$ by doing this?? Any ideas??

By the way I am doing really well just feeling terrific in myself!!            Paddy
If it is a large debt, talk to CSA about a payment plan. Usually, regular payments are acceptable.

Make sure you get this arrangement in writing.

I would continue to wait until you understand why the debt is so high and receive a letter from CSA. The outcomes of the COA should have been explained to you.

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. 
No the COA was not explained to me! You sound suprised! why is that?

I recieved a phonecall Yesterday afternoon asking me what I was going to do about $$$$$$ owing? I said 'I hav nothing to say until I recieve my letters!'

Yes I have $3,500 owing in september '08! My ex will not except a 'PAYMENT PLAN' it has to be all or my whole life will become a living HELL! (with C$A backing her up up of course)               Paddy
Artemis said
If it is a large debt, talk to CSA about a payment plan. Usually, regular payments are acceptable.

Make sure you get this arrangement in writing.

I would continue to wait until you understand why the debt is so high and receive a letter from CSA. The outcomes of the COA should have been explained to you.
 
I've been through many COA's and not one has ever been properly explained, never have I seen the assessors calculations or been provided the references they utilised. I have asked for them but been refused on 'privacy' grounds or some other reason.

I do know they often refer to ATO Rulings.. for example those in certain businesses (Taxation Rulings IT 2659 and TD 2007/30, etc; estimates of the value of goods taken from trading stock for private use by taxpayers in named industries ) might have Rulings incorporated into their COA without being told. A person owning a takeaway whose income is $50k might be assessed with these rulings as earning $52,700 plus extra for partners and children (eg, partner and 2 other children @ $5k). They will consider the nature of the business as one where goods taken from stock for private use is considered additional income. Another example is a taxi driver…considered he uses taxi to do personal errands, shopping, etc:

Paddy … I am interested to know how "this debt has been made by COA in one day".  was it on the day, the day after or are you speaking rhetorically? Is the debt back payment, forward or combo of both?         And can you cut the bold writing please…hard to read.

" Perspective depends on which side of the barbed wire fence you sit, or indeed if you are sitting on it! "
Paddy,
         perhaps read this :-

CSA Guide - Change of Assessment Process said
Change of assessment application must be in writing

A person cannot apply for a change of assessment by phone. CSA requires that a change of assessment application be made in writing on the appropriate form (sections 98D and 150A).

The form (Your Application: changing your child support assessment in special circumstances) is available from CSA offices or on CSA's website at www.csa.gov.au. The form can be lodged by mail, in person or by facsimile.

In order to make a valid change of assessment application, the person must complete and sign the form. If the applicant is a parent of the child for whom child support is payable, he or she must also complete the financial section of the application form.

The form asks the applicant to identify the period for which a change is sought. CSA has limited powers to make a retrospective change of assessment decision.

Parties to a change of assessment

The parties to a change of assessment application are the liable parent and the carer entitled to child support (section 98B(2)). Where there is a non-parent carer, both parents will be parties to the application in some circumstances.

Copy of application to the other parent

When CSA receives a change of assessment application, it must send a copy of the application and any documents that accompanied the application to the other party (section 98G). However, CSA is not required to send a copy of the application or supporting documents to the other party if it decides to refuse the application without a conference (section 98G(1)).

Right to respond to application

CSA must give the other party an opportunity to respond to the application (section 98G(2)). CSA does this by sending the other party (the respondent) a form (Response - changing your child support assessment in special circumstances) when it forwards the application to them. However, CSA is not required to give the other party an opportunity to respond to an application if it decides to refuse to change the assessment (section 98G(1)).

If the respondent completes the response form, CSA must send a copy of that response and any documents that accompanied it to the applicant (section 98G(3)).

Each party entitled to a conference

CSA must give each party an opportunity to have a conference with the Senior Case Officer (SCO) making a decision on the application for a change of assessment (section 98H). However, CSA can decide to refuse to change the assessment without giving any party a conference (section 98G(1)).

CSA will offer the applicant and respondent a personal or telephone conference. This can be a joint conference with the other party if the parties agree (section 98H(3)). CSA can also conduct separate conferences for each party, either personally, or by telephone.

Unlike a court hearing, the CSA cannot take evidence under oath, or cross examine a party about the evidence they give at conference, or in their application.

No party can have a representative appear for them at their conference (section 98H(5)).

CSA not obliged to conduct investigations


CSA can make a change of assessment decision on the basis of the application, the other partys response and any supporting documents that the parties provided (section 98H(1)(a)).

CSA can conduct further enquiries, but is not obliged to do so (section 98H(1)(b)). If CSA requires further information from a party, or from third parties, it can issue a notice requiring a person to provide that information (section 161).

The prescribed change of assessment application form requests that an applicant provide documents in support of their application. The response form also requests supporting documentation. The SCO will examine and weigh the evidence presented by the parties, which includes their written and oral statements, as well as the supporting documents. The SCO may request that the applicant or respondent provide further information or documents before making a decision on the application.

CSA will require a person to provide evidence in support of a claim that they cannot work, or have a reduced to capacity to work, because of a medical condition. The usual acceptable form of medical evidence is by way of a written report or medical certificate from a registered medical practitioner. The certificate or report must identify the persons medical condition, and state the manner and the period for which that condition will affect the persons capacity to work. CSA may also require medical evidence of a childs special needs; or of the medical condition of a person for whom the applicant provides care, or has a duty to maintain.

Procedural fairness

CSA must deal with a change of assessment application in a way that is procedurally fair. A decision-maker must ensure that a person is aware of any adverse information and that they have an opportunity to be heard and make submissions in support of their case. In addition to providing each party with a copy of the other partys response or application and supporting documents, CSA will also advise each party of any additional information that it intends taking into account in a way that is adverse to them, and invite them to comment upon that information. This would include information provided by the other party at a separate conference, or by a third party after the conference.

Agreements made during a change of assessment

Parties can make an agreement while CSA is considering a change of assessment application (section 98T). CSA must accept the agreement if it is satisfied that it is a child support agreement (section 98U(1)). However, if the payee receives an income-tested pension, allowance or benefit, CSA can only accept a child support agreement if it is satisfied that it would be just and equitable and otherwise proper to do so (section 98U(2)).

Income-tested pension, allowance or benefit

The following payments are income-tested pensions, allowances or benefits (section 5 Assessment Act, section 4(1) Family Law Act and regulation 12A Family Law Regulations).

    * A service pension from the Department of Veteran's Affairs
    * All social security payments (not just those payments subject to an income test) except for the base rate of Family Tax Benefit Part A, Mobility Allowance and disaster relief payments
    * A means-tested Abstudy allowance
    * A means-tested boarding allowance under the Assistance for Isolated Children Scheme
    * A New Enterprise Incentive Scheme payment
    * AUSTUDY
    * Formal training assistance paid under a Labour Market Program (administered by the Department of Employment, Workplace Relations and Small Business)

Further information about the eligibility criteria and rates of these payments can be found in the Guide to Australian Government Payments Booklet, available from Centrelinks website: A guide to Australian Government payments booklet - Department of Human Services

CSA must give written notice of the decision

CSA must give the parties written reasons for the decision to change an assessment, including the reasons for establishing that special circumstances existed in the case (section 98S(4)). This allows the parties to have a clear understanding of the meaning and effect of the decision. CSA will also document its reasons for the type and duration of the decision in the notice of decision. If CSA fails to give written reasons to either party this does not affect the validity of the decision (section 98S(5)).

CSA must also amend the administrative assessment to give effect to the change of assessment decision and give the parties a written notice of the assessment (sections 75 and 76). The assessment notice must include, or be accompanied by, information about the parties right to object to CSA's decision, and to apply to the Social Security Appeals Tribunal if they are aggrieved by CSAs decision on the objection (section 76(3)).

If CSA refuses to make a change to the assessment, it must also provide the parties with written reasons for that decision.
"The SCO will examine and weigh the evidence presented by the parties, which includes their written and oral statements, as well as the supporting documents"

Amazing how little info the customer is given about how the SCO weighs the evidence. Or translating this into a decision. It really comes down to the SCO and how they 'fit in' their opinion into the legislation.

Here's a true story …

1 child, shared care, with dad 4 nights a week, mum 3, both payer/payee, 12% liabilty each. Mum earns $1k more per annum plus unclaimed hospitality tips.    COA conference - SCO and mum same cultural background.   Mum claims $270 per month for clothes, $80pm for video hire, $150 for mobile phone,etc;, child care, shares accom and bills with 3 others.   COA decision - dad pays $3k per annum, mum nothing.   Objection lodged - COA overturned 5 months later, back payment from mum dismissed, mum to pay @ $6 per month less than dad from date of Objection decision.   Mum annoyed by decision, quits job a week later for another $12k p.a. less, works some cash in hand with previous employer. Mum lodges COA - gets liabilty halved from date she quit job. 

" Perspective depends on which side of the barbed wire fence you sit, or indeed if you are sitting on it! "
I went through a COA this year which increased CS amount payable, my ex has objected. What I would like to know is if the objection is upheld what happens with the arrears that have built up over this time.

I have called CS and they have not been able to give me an answer, will the amount be backdated to when the COA was lodged? (He hasn't paid anything anyway it is just all building up) I am confused with the whole situation :(
Here's what the guide says, which to me implies that there is nothing to backdate as the decision being objected to stays in force.

CSA Guide said
4.1.7: Effect of objection on original decision

Version 2.0, Last updated 17 March 2008 5:00pm
Information in this version of The Guide applies from 1 July 2008
Refer to the previous Scheme Guide for information until 30 June 2008

Context

CSA's original decision continues to have effect while a parent seeks reconsideration of that decision.

Legislative references

Division 1, Part VIIIA and 111C Child Support (Registration and Collection) Act 1988

Explanation

The original decision continues to have effect while CSA considers an objection to that decision. CSA or the other parent may take action to collect amounts owing under the assessment unless a court issues a stay order in relation that decision (see chapter 4.3.2 Implementing Court Orders that affect Assessments, heading Stay Orders).
First of all thank you Mike T I read and checked out the info you posted here and it made everything clearer to me. Much beter to understand. I hav got my assessment info in the mail today. I must say that the letters I got were very clear. I am abit amazed at it. I hav a letter informing me of what was said by both of us (myself and ex) and how they reached the decision.

   Interesting I can tell you! Also as my taxable amount has increased of my C$A has gone up. (new this would happen anyway) but even though I hav been paying my monthly amounts as usual (during the COA) they have added on my new amounts as well. Which is why I owe alot of money. Also they have backdated it to May 08 which is why I owe so much.

Paddy
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