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Cost of boarding school less than CS payments

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I have just realised that in my situation the cost of sending my two children to boarding school is a lot less than the CS I pay. If managed to get my ex to agree to send the kids to boarding school, how would my CS be calculated? Assuming that the children spend half their school holidays with either parent, do the care percentages plummet for both parents?

A person who can't pay gets another person who can't pay to guarantee that he can pay. Like a person with two wooden legs getting another person with two wooden legs to guarantee that he has got two natural legs. It don't make either of them able to do a walking-match. Charles Dickens
Boarding school is a terrible thing to do to children
Unless you have been subjected to it, you cannot have a concept of how bad it is…
PaulG,
        this is an area where I believe the level of care allocation is very wrong. The care will be assumed to be with the parent who has the greater level of care, not the parent who is necessarily paying the school fees. The school fees may be distributed between the parents, if both parents intended the schooling (e.g. such schooling was happening at the time of the separation or after or if both parents sign the enrolment forms).

Personally I believe that generally the school should be treated as a non parent carer in it's own right and that the resultant CS should go towards the school fees.
MikeT said
Personally I believe that generally the school should be treated as a non parent carer in it's own right and that the resultant CS should go towards the school fees.
Has this been taken up as an emerging issue? Perhaps it should be. I wonder how widespread CSA customers with children at Boarding School actually is? The general issue I tend to see is when intact family parents send their children to Private and or Boarding Schools, then later on after they seperate one parent cannot afford to do so any longer and then it all becomes very problematic and under a COA when the CSA force the continuation of payments causes all sorts of financial hardships.


Executive Secretary - Shared Parenting Council of Australia
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Secretary SPCA said
The general issue I tend to see is when intact family parents send their children to Private and or Boarding Schools, then later on after they seperate one parent cannot afford to do so any longer and then it all becomes very problematic and under a COA when the CSA force the continuation of payments causes all sorts of financial hardships.

I agree. The Family Law Act 1975 does not require that a spouse be maintained to the standard of living that they experienced in the marriage. However the implementation of the Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989 often enforces that the payee parent is maintained to the same standard of living without actually stating same.

What is the precedence of the family law and child support acts? Which act takes precedence where there is a conflict?

A person who can't pay gets another person who can't pay to guarantee that he can pay. Like a person with two wooden legs getting another person with two wooden legs to guarantee that he has got two natural legs. It don't make either of them able to do a walking-match. Charles Dickens
That's an interesting point about the family law vs CSA. I'm replying to a COA at the moment and arguing that the future disparity in income was taken into account in the divorce settlement. The care of the children was obviously taken into account as the consent orders were lodged with the divorce and she argued for more assets because she had majority care.

Not expecting anything, but it should be funny to see what CSA have to say.
Hi dm900....Sorry mate but dont hold your breath!!! The Family Court will provide you reasons for their decisions. However, I once pushed the CSA to provide me a reason for their decision and the response that I received in writing, "because we can do it, then we are justified". Priceless!!!!

A person who can't pay gets another person who can't pay to guarantee that he can pay. Like a person with two wooden legs getting another person with two wooden legs to guarantee that he has got two natural legs. It don't make either of them able to do a walking-match. Charles Dickens
seriously said
Boarding school is a terrible thing to do to children
Unless you have been subjected to it, you cannot have a concept of how bad it is…
 
Quite frankly, boarding school was awful. It was a good preparation for life as a prisoner. when you are at boarding school there is no escape at the end of the day. If anything nights were the worst.
Nope… don't see the conflict. The FLA pertains to the maintenance of spouses of defacto partners, not children. The addition impact of caring for children is taken into account pursuant to s.75(2) ('future needs') considerations. The CSA pertains to the maintenance of children, including BUT NOT LIMITED TO, the costs of education/schooling. How does an assessment based on a party's individual income demand they maintain their ex-spouse or exdefacto at a certain standard of living? Not only are the funds assessed and alloacated for the care of the CHILDREN, if the payer's income is substancially reduced (i.e. retrenchment/loss of employement) then their liability drops accordingly.

Bottom line…

If you want to avoid paying your full amount of child support as assessed by the CSA - in this case paying a rate equivalent to just the kids boarding school fees - then you need to con their Mum into entering into a Binding Child Support Agreement.

Hope the above helps…

- Zer0ne -
ZeroOne83 said
How does an assessment based on a party's individual income demand they maintain their ex-spouse or exdefacto at a certain standard of living?

Because the underlying cost of children has been greatly inflated in order to increase the FTB clawback aspect. Thus a liable parent will generally pay more than that parent's share of what is actually required to support the child or children and thus there is, due to the factor that CS is inflated an aspect of maintenance of the recipient, an inbuilt element of spousal maintenance. This is not even considering the fact that the CSA have been shown by the Ombudsman to apply bias toward collecting or transferring an inflated liability in Change of Assessment decisions. The Ombudsman's finding being very clearly confirmed by court decisions that are generally available.

ZeroOne83 said
Not only are the funds assessed and alloacated for the care of the CHILDREN, if the payer's income is substancially reduced (i.e. retrenchment/loss of employement) then their liability drops accordingly.
There is no enforcement that the amount received for the child or children is spent on the child or children so there is no actual allocation; rather that a recipient parent should allocate the funds received toward the child or children for which they are obtained. It is a real shame that the legislation is only half what it should be in that it only enforces the financial responsibility to pay and does not enforce the financial responsibility to spend what is received. Especially as the latter could very easily be used to drive a realistic basis of the cost of supporting children.
Going to have to respectfully disagree with you on this one. I will, however, agree that in the context of someone who doesn't spend the totality of their child support on their child, then yes, I suppose 'excess' child support could be considered spousal maintenanc becuase Mum/Dad ends up spending it on themselves. BUT, I think we can both agree that was not the intention of either piece of legislation… its just the unfortunate practical reality of bad parenting/people. If 100% of child support is spent on the care of the child as it is earmarked, there is no correlation between child support and spousal maintenance.
ZeroOne83 said
BUT, I think we can both agree that was not the intention of either piece of legislation
Perhaps we could agree with the "published intention", it is very clear that the real intention was to exploit children for the Governmental gain. Basically it's no different to much, perhaps most, recent legislation and also proposed legislation e.g. speed cameras, the purpose is not to increase safety but to increase revenue; thus such legislation is in all but the words used, additional taxation.

You could persuade me otherwise if you showed me exactly how an average family with a salary of $50,000 could and would afford to both live and fork out $500,000 on a single child (in fact I believe, if I recall correctly just over $510,000, whilst the average salary was then less than $50,000, so using $500,000 and $50,000 should be a breeze). I believe that the figures used even include a pretty large amount that assumes that income lost during pregnancy/child caring can somehow magically be made to reappear when it comes to working out the cost of a child.
Some good points - a little removed from the original thrust of the spousal maintenance vs child support arguement/question, but yep, preaching to the converted re epic flaws in child support system. Again, I will have to disagree with your comments re the underhanded fiscal motivations of governement. CSA = just a mess, not an evil machiavellian plot to grind children up into money.

- Zer0ne -
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