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I have been asked by centrelink and child support to send any letters from ex's lawyer and to the ex's lawyer if it shows I have the children almost full time now(ex has been offered but not accepted every second weekend- ex wants less). I'm wondering if this is actually allowed?
Should I really be handing them copies of these letters?
Is there a privacy issue in regards to showing anyone else lawyers letters in regards to family law matters?

I'm swaying not to hand them over but also it is getting pretty strained at home while I am doing no work on my business.
Thanks In Advance
Why are they seeking evidence of time with you? Is the other parent disputing care levels? If the children are with you most of the time what is the point?

I am intrigued as to why such a minor issue as this might make things "pretty strained at home" and stop you from "doing no work on my business". Seems quite extraordinary.

Executive Secretary - Shared Parenting Council of Australia
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Sorry I wrote in haste, I should have explained more.

Unable to work on my business is because of an issue (I'd rather not elaborate in case ex ever reads) relating to one of our children which does require a huge amount of time which was prior to the children being with me full time, I took "leave" of my business as the ex refused to deal with it even when he had the kids during his time.

It is strained because of this issue above financially, I dealt without the centrelink support for quite sometime (more so I should say out of pride that I had become able after many years able to support myself and the children and did not want to end up being another mother sitting on a government payment again).

Reluctantly I applied for centrelink, for the care levels they wrote to the ex. The ex is not disputing care levels but disputing with centrelink that he does not get the Family tax benefit anymore or to my surprise the extra payment for our child - I had not known he was even getting this payment, this payment is specifically to help with the extra costs of helping our child, which is what surprises me now that he never contributed anything. Anyway they do not want proof of care levels more so proof he is not taking the time available to him that has been court ordered, the time that I have offered him and still saying lower than one overnight (for various reasons).

As he is disputing that I should not receive any as I am "apparently" just being evil and vindictive and he claims I am stopping him seeing the children, there are other issues involved which recently brought about extra provisions being made to our orders for him to spend time with the children. His time has not been reduced, he just refuses to accept the provisions in place and thus states he does not want to see the children for a large amount of time if the provisions are in place, they are nothing unreasonable either I might add considering the circumstances - just seems like sour grapes.

Why centrelink are allowing this to go on when he has confirmed the care levels stated is a mystery to me. I let the csa issue go, no point except it may antagonize the situation even if equals nothing, so better to drop that, it was only centrelinks request anyway.
faith said
….The ex is not disputing care levels but disputing with centrelink that he does not get the Family tax benefit anymore or to my surprise the extra payment for our child - I had not known he was even getting this payment, this payment is specifically to help with the extra costs of helping our child, which is what surprises me now that he never contributed anything. Anyway they do not want proof of care levels more so proof he is not taking the time available to him that has been court ordered, the time that I have offered him and still saying lower than one overnight (for various reasons).
If he has less than 127 nights he is in the "regular care band and there is no FTB payable as they have discounted 24% credit for care in the formula. Levels of care or care bands have been determined with 5 categories: Below regular (0 - 51 nights), Regular (52 - 127 nights), Shared (128 - 237 nights), Primary (238  313 nights), Above primary (314 - 365 nights). You can see all this at our CSA section.

From 1 July 2008, where a parent has care of the child for between 14 and 34 per cent of the nights of the year, 24 per cent of the cost of the child will be taken to be met through the provision of that care. This will reduce the possibility of payments changing as a result of small changes in care, and help to remove incentives for a parent to restrict contact with the other parent.

Where parents have care for at least 35 per cent of the time, a sliding scale will increase the direct cost percentage (reflects the costs you incur when you provide care for your child) as care increases, from 25 per cent up to 50 per cent. So, a parent will be recognised as meeting 50 per cent of the costs of children if their care percentage is between 48 to 52 per cent (equal to 176-189 nights per year).

Child support is calculated to recognise shared parenting and the contribution each parent makes towards the costs of the children through direct care. A parent or non-parent carers percentage of care is used to determine the parents or non-parent carers cost percentage, that is, the percentage of the cost of the child that the person is taken to be meeting directly as a result of the care they provide.

Parents with regular care, that is, 14 to 34 per cent of the time (52 to 127 nights) are acknowledged as directly meeting 24 per cent of the costs of the children, with the remainder of their share of the costs being payable as child support. They wont receive a share of Family Tax Benefit Part A or B or some other family assistance payments, but they may still be eligible to access other benefits such as rent assistance and a Health Care Card. They may also be able to receive a higher with child rate of income support.

Parents with shared care are also recognised in the child support formula as a contributing to the costs of the child. Their direct contribution is recognised on a sliding scale of percentages, directly related to the percentage of care they provide. A customer with shared care can either receive or be required to pay child support.

Primary care is recognised in the child support formula as a contribution to the costs of the child, with the parent acknowledged as directly meeting 76 per cent of the costs of the children. A customer will not be assessed to pay child support if they have more than 65 per cent care.

A customer with above primary care (at least 86 per cent) is recognised as directly meeting all of the costs of the child. A customer with this level of care will not be assessed to pay child support.
He cannot dispute anything in respect to your payments of FTB because it is black and white. Regardless or otherwise in his mind as to the level of your "eveilness or "vindictive nature", it has nothing to do with getting you FTB (Family Tax Benefit).

If you have orders present those orders. If he has time that he is not taking then all you have to do is advise Centrelink or CSA and he has 14 weeks to show that he is doing something about it or the CSA will change the formula.
faith said
As he is disputing that I should not receive any as I am "apparently" just being evil and vindictive and he claims I am stopping him seeing the children, there are other issues involved which recently brought about extra provisions being made to our orders for him to spend time with the children. His time has not been reduced, he just refuses to accept the provisions in place and thus states he does not want to see the children for a large amount of time if the provisions are in place, they are nothing unreasonable either I might add considering the circumstances - just seems like sour grapes.

Why centrelink are allowing this to go on when he has confirmed the care levels stated is a mystery to me. I let the csa issue go, no point except it may antagonize the situation even if equals nothing, so better to drop that, it was only centrelinks request anyway.
It is a mystery to me as well because the rules (as set out above) are very clear. In your case you have orders in place that set out the time. You have a situation that the father does not want to exercise his time because there are some "Provisions" in place that are not agreeable to him. He has a remedy and that is he could have appealed the orders when they were made , he could go to Mediation to see if he can work something out with you or he could take up the contact he is able to have and work out things from there. Building up some relationship with the kids and over time, hopefully improving the relationship with you, may be beneficial all round.




Executive Secretary - Shared Parenting Council of Australia
 Was my post helpful? If so, please let others know about the FamilyLawWebGuide whenever you see the opportunity
 
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