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COA when payee starts fulltime work

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I have been working fulltime for almost 21years and have 50/50 shared care of my 7yr old, and have been paying my daughters father child support because he has not had a job in 4yrs.

So for the last few financial years his income has of course been $0, however in the last week, he has managed to get himself a fulltime job earning $40k.

I want to do a COA based purely on the fact that his income will be going from $0 to $40,000 per annum. According to the CS calculator my CS payments  will be reduced by $40 a week.

Do you think the CSA will re-assess and reduce my payments based on him now being employed or would they argue that they can only go off 'the earnings for the last financial year' and wont reduce my payments until the end of this financial year when he puts in a tax return?!

I also argued with them over the fact that I object to filling out the details of all my expenses , loan balances and cc balances on the COA application, particularly when they said that my ex will get a copy of my application including all the financial details.  I dont at all object to the CSA knowing my financial details but I most strongly object to my ex and his defacto partner trawling through it.

Firstly, do you think I have a leg to stand on with this COA considering he has only just started working ??? Do you think I should just lump it for now and wait for him to lodge his tax return at the end of this financial year eventhough he wont have been working for a full financial year?  Do you think I should try to lodge the COA application with a N/A crossed through the section asking for all my financial details?

I dont see why I have to disclose balances of bank accounts, credit cards and loans when my income hasnt changed and Im only seeking the CS payments reduced based on HIS income changing significantly.

Hope Ive made some sense, Im still reeling from the shock that the CSA think its fair enough to withhold my address and phone number from my ex as its a privacy issues (despite the fact that we already call each other and do drop offs at each others places lol) yet think he has every right to know how much I owe on a credit card!!!

"The only thing to do with good advice is to pass it on. It is never any  use to oneself."

I believe that there are no special circumstances that should warrant a change of assessment as a person becoming employed is an ordinary occurrence. The CSA cannot use an income estimate as the first estimate has to be for the reduction of 85% or less of the previous income. As such I don't think that you can make any decision and that you will just have to pay the extra until their income is introduced the next financial year and to then be fully included the following financial year.

With regard to financial details for the other parent to not be denied the right to determine whether an injustice has been done, they have the right to all the financial  information but not information that could identify you (e.g. who you work for, where you live etc). The change of assessment process has to be just and equitable and has to consider parent's capacity to pay, as such that includes amounts such as bank balances (which the CSA can and do investigate if they are not joint accounts anyway).
Thanks for your quick reply Mike!!

I totally understand disclosing my annual income every year but still dont think my ex knowing any of my other financial details is relevent when they havent changed at all.

I suppose all I can do if I dont wish for my ex to know my financial details, is to wait till the end of this financial year for a small reduction in what I pay him. And then wait a further year for his full salary to be taken into consideration.

"The only thing to do with good advice is to pass it on. It is never any  use to oneself."

C$A and $$AT...COA

Hi Supermum,

We have been through change of assessment (COA) and then $$AT.

If we had the time again they would only get my group certificate.

Ex's income was included, however nominal, only $1000 more than self support amount.

CSA asked for my partners details as well, as she was not working (baby), wanted last Fin year, citing they wanted to know 'what we were missing out on'

Unfortunately we gave. It made no difference. DO NOT GIVE PARTNERS INCOME DETAILS, no matter what the C$A say.

C$A or $$AT did not use any information, we gave all, other than group certificate numbers to calculate CS.

You can do calculations yourself on the FLWG CS advanced calculator, and get the answer yourself.

We have a $740,000 mortgage and C$A and $$AT said mortgage was part of 'self support amount ($19,000) and was not taken into consideration.

We have a personal loan of $35,000, and that wasn't considered as a large sum.

I strongly suggest that you only submit end of year group cert, and that's all, unless you have some thing extremely unusual it will not be considered.

Unless you need to submit invoices for special circumstances/extra costs eg tutoring/medical etc.

In fact after $$at hearing they actually increased my child support even though ex earned more. Go figure, and you cannot object $$AT decision, unless you go to court.

You can, however object a C$A decision.

If you don't have to go through this process, I wouldn't, the grief and stress is not worth $40 x 52month = $2080

Think that you are investing $2080 into your well being.

The C$A require him to do his tax by end of October, so don't expect a change before then, if no change by then, ring and ask why, you may need to make a few phone calls to get the right answer, then you have to instigate COA process.

Hope this helps.

They need to know everything so they can assess the standard of lifestyle each parent can offer their children. For example if the payer is deemed to have a higher standard of living than the payee then C$A will make the payer pay more with the hope the children will have a similar standard of living with each parent.
Based on my experience regarding COA you can file a change of assessment application based on the fact that payee has now a fulltime job. I had a conversation with a CSA officer about exactly that issue and she sent me an application form.

Regarding financial details: When you initiate the COA you have to provide detailed information, however, there is a minimum that CSA will accept. We argued the same thing that all this information was irrelevant when payee's situation has changed and not ours. CSA will accept the application if you put in your income and the basic expenses like rent or mortgage, food, electricity etc. Do not include your bank account balances or entertainment costs unless they are sport expenses for the child etc. Keep it at a reasonable minimum and it should be accepted.

As for CSA needing to know the details to make a fair decision, Fairgo, I disagree. Payee is NOT required to supply any financial information during the COA process. How can CSA make a fair decision when payee is not prompted to explain how they budget for the child?
Babushka said
As for CSA needing to know the details to make a fair decision, Fairgo, I disagree. Payee is NOT required to supply any financial information during the COA process. How can CSA make a fair decision when payee is not prompted to explain how they budget for the child?

Babushka, according to the legislation both parents should supply the information as the legislation does not, in this area really discriminate according to payer or payee. However, what is very clear from what happens and according to the relatively recent ombudsman's report, is that the CSA COA process, in practice, introduces discrimination contrary to the legislations and especially contrary to the very object of the child support assessment act as set out in section 4 to ensure that parents meet their financial responsibility toward their children. The CSA in actioning what has been termed by some as "Deem and Destroy" (i.e. Change of Assessment) very frequently and likely typically and perhaps even always consider that collecting whatever they can, which according to the legislation and if the CSA distort the meaning of just and equitable, as they undoubtedly do, is very much whatever figures they can conjure up, which includes taking years old business loans as business income, magically turning business expenses into personal benefits and discarding any amounts that may reduce the recipients child support income.
Mike, is this something we should bring to someones attention? We had 3 COA's in the past couple of years and the payee did not supply financial information ever. On the first response form she wrote:"None of his business" in the financial section and for the 2 other COA's she did not even fill out the form. When questioned, CSA advised that she did not have to, only the person initiating would have to supply. Mind you, SSAT was the same. Payee did not have to fill out form or participate in hearing.
The issue of CSA seeking to collect informatin unlawfully has been brought to the attention of a wide variety of people in authority.  I encourage people to maintain the rage against these unlawful practices until the government conceded it has got it wrong.
             as Big Red says the matters are raised and they are raised frequently however as the net result would likely be less in the way of Government revenue by the way of the back-door tax that CS is (i.e. for each $1 collected or transferred, FTB is reduced by 50c), then such messages are more often than not all but ignored, so the scam and the systemic exploitation, and thus systemic abuse, of children of separation continues as will the knock on effects. For example, the frequent denial, for monetary gain, of the right of children of separation to know and be cared for by their parents. I can see many similarities with initiatives such as revenue earning cameras that are knowingly falsely touted as increasing safety.
If a COA matter manages to make it to a court the magistrate will usually not hesitate in requesting that both parties file a form 13 and they are following the same legislation that C$A are supposed to follow.

My understanding is that each time a tax return is lodged CSA will recalculate the amounts to be paid.

If he has just gotten a job it will automatically be taken into account once he lodges his tax return.

If he fails to lodge a tax return in an appropriate timeframe at the end of the next financial year you could ask CSA to use an estimate.

This is how it has worked for me.
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