False accusations / shut out / court costs : False allegations and Separation from your children
Sadly this happened to my (now) husband and I watched by in the early years as his ex wife spread malicious and false allegations about him which ended up in court. She managed to have a Misconduct restraining order placed on him for only a year after separation and for a limited time period he had minimal contact with his children at a mediation centre. Until she realized that he had another women in his life (me) and then all contact stopped and the rumours and gossip got worse. He stopped all contact with the children on the advice of his lawyers, who were of the opinion all the stress on the children forcing them to 'choose' the better or right parent was just too much. They decided that the children would come back later in life when they were older. My husband's lawyers decided that the ex-wife had emotional problems (dysfunctional narcissistic personality disorder) and that if he had contact this may actually endanger the children's lives as the ex wife would lose all her emotional and financial control over the children which she perceived as her property. The only advice I can give to you is move on with your life, you may never get over the loss of your children, but my husband has learned to live without them and enjoys my two children who give him a lot of joy and happiness….although never replacing his own kids. My husband stopped being a pawn in his ex-wife's life and has had no contact with her for twenty years and she does not even know where he lives. At some stage in life 'enough is enough!' and we can only hope that at some stage the adult children will come to realize their mother's evil controlling ways and her lies or maybe they will not. Your owe it to your children to show them that you can hold your head up high as you have not done anything wrong except be a good father to them. Sadly for many the Family Court does not recognize the people who manipulate it for their own advantages. Several books have also helped us understand what is happening as well. These are the following:-
Divorce Poison by Dr Richard A. Warshak
The Parental Alienation Syndrome by Linda J. Gottlieb
Adult Children of Parental Alienation Syndrome by Amy J. L. Baker
My husband also let his ex wife dominate and control their relationship during the marriage, so was actually contributing to her 'Rage' when he would no longer do as she wished after she left the marriage. Recently, she sent my husband a message via a mutual friend of his and hers to tell him that she was actually only 'teaching him a lesson!' …they have been divorced for 18 years. This may also help, reading on the internet about different dysfunctional personality disorders (Narcissism) can help you with dealing with people who make false allegations (like your ex wife) and ways to alleviate the stresses when dealing with them. My husband stopped reacting to his ex wife's demands and removed himself from her life and the childrens, and sad to say, but has been the best for all concerned in our case.
Why are capital gains included in the CSA assessment.: Capital Gains and CSA
I have been following this with interest as my husband and myself purchased my son's house several years ago and retained it as an investment house for 13 months. We sold it at the bank's request (we did not want to) as we built a new house and the bank was not happy about us having so much debt, so we sold the property. That was almost 7 yrs ago now. I have processed my tax assessment each year and I paid $12,000 in CGT tax, which was not too bad considering the capital gains for myself was $60,000 (50% CGT). My husband, point blank refuses to do any tax assessment as he is not giving his ex wife one cent, that is what he says and he is sticking to it. We no longer have any child support to pay, but he refuses to do his tax as they will just pounce on the capital gains and send us a bill. Ex wife has claimed Centrelink all her life and still , with no children living at home for the past two years, is living with her 'DISABLED' husband at the taxpayers expense. I see Hubbie's point, as we were forced to work two and three jobs to get through those tough CSA years and his kids have never tried to contact him, even now, they have been so brain-washed against both of us! Life was tough for us both working those long hours, sometimes 15 hour days and even tougher on my two children that sometimes had to work along side us to make ends meet.We were exhausted and only now have something to show for all our hard work.
Child Support even asked him to do his taxation and he just told them,'You are not the taxation department", they could do nothing! He now pays huge amounts of taxation working in the mining industry, so we figure they are not missing out on anything, The taxation department gets more from him in one year, than his ex wife has ever payed in taxation her whole life!! We are adamant that a 3rd party will not have the privilege of knowing our personal financial details, even this goes against the grain of the 'Privacy Act'.
I do not understand that during our relationship, we bought the investment house together, we worked our butts off to make up the extra repayments, and we have to pay a third party who has absolutely nothing to do with us, monies from the capital gains. No, not on. I back my Husband's stance on this 100%. Why should we have to pay for the Parasites on society is they do not want to work.
To the CSA "Sorry" is good enough: CSA will just keep taking more and more money from the payer and his family (The Show No Mercy Policy!!)
After sadly reading Jables08 attachment I am very saddened to see this treatment is still being dished out by CSA to second families. Hubbie and myself did the very same thing. We applied for and were granted a bankcard which we drew all of it to pay off his child support debt ($12,000) just to get CSA off his case. Then paid them in advance so always having a credit amount. I know how frustrating it is but is does get better. CSA wiped off all our debt which was accumulating so fast and at the rate the debt was going up it would have taken him another life time to pay off. Anyway, it does get better, the kids are all grown up and CSA cannot extract anymore money from you and (like us) just chip away at the credit card debt,…. which we still have and the debt is slowly going down. There is light at the end of the tunnel, and we were always glad to pay off that debt and move on with our lives. Yes, it did infuriate me that his ex wife has never worked (and never will), but we are the long term winners, we both have good jobs, good careers, and as he has no kids to hassle him (his children has never spoken to him as they were brain-washed by the mother) we now travel a lot and do our thing and absolutely enjoy ourselves, while his ex wife still sits on Centrelink with her second hubbie. So stay positive and become a 'write only' customer and never, ever deal with CSA over the phone as the tell massive lies with this system because they get away with it!!
It makes me wonder why the Family Court of Australia does not recognise when a child is deliberately alienated from the non residental parent, by the residental parent. This sees the destruction of a good relationship with the non residental parent (usually, but not always, the father). I have read Dr Gardner's book and Dr Baker's book on the subject and it appears the American courts are aware of this type of behaviour. It is so terrible to watch the lies the other parent tells to destroy the kids relationship with the other parent, this I liken to criminal behaviour and there should be systems in place to prevent this in the Australian Family Court, but there is nothing. Children are used as pawns and in a lot of cases it is for purely financial gain by the residential parent, who appears to suffer no consequences for this behaviour.
Dr Linda Gottlieb (a Family Therapist) has recently written another book on the alienation of children (The Parental Alienation Syndrome). One of the comments she made was she noticed that working with 'Foster and Abused children' made her very aware that these children often wanted a relationship with their estranged parent (often the children had been removed from a home environment), but in the case of Alienated children , these kids wanted nothing to do with the other parent. She also felt that the children were saying this to please the residental parent. Sadly, these children often go on to repeat the mistakes of the previous generation as adult children that have been exposed to this abuse. What this means is more generations of 'children living in poverty' and living in a welfare cycle can be hard to escape from.
My husband (who himself grew up in an orphange) has been estranged from his children for 17 years now, with little hope of any reconcilation, but I am hopeful that more can be done to prevent future generations from going through all this emotional separation and pain.
There is also a Facebook page, "Make PARENTAL ALIENATION a crime" which often has some interesting cases (but all US based). Maybe the Australian media might take up the story one day, instead of continually running the story of the CSA Dead Beat Dads' stories.
Child goes on overseas exchange - what happens about CS?: Child Overseas on Exchange
In answer to the question about a child going on an overseas exchange program, my daughter went overseas for 1 year and repeated Yr 12 in Brazil on an exchange program (she was 17yrs at the time and had finished her studies here and obtained entrance to a local Uni). Her father had to pay Child support until she was 18yrs and I was expected to maintain her (financially) while she was with her host family in Brazil. I had to go to court to get child support, as he was not paying anything at the time, we had separated prior to CSA (before 1988). The judge informed him that he had a duty of care to provide for his daughter until she was 18yrs old, as she was technically still at school. I sent her fortnightly amounts which paid for her Portuguese lessons (as the language was a problem) and the money also contributed towards several of her organised trips to different parts of the country, and daily living costs. A wonderful experience for your child, but you are still required to send monies over to support them. It also depends on the currency of the country they are going to and the amount of money they will need.
address for service unknown: Serving of Court Documents to unknown address of the other party involved
My husband had the same problem many years ago when he applied to divorce his first wife (her address was unknown to us and she was also a devout Catholic which posed a few problems). Through the Family Court we were able to serve her via her Centrelink address as she was getting Family payments and other assistance. My Husband never new her address, but she was served via the Family Court system who arranged the documents to be served. Ex wife also refused to appear in court and was sent further documents that informed her she would be in a lot of trouble if she did not attend the hearing. This was all done via the Family Court after Hubbie filed the paperwork, and several hearings later (as the ex wife failed to attend a few hearings) she turned up and his divorce was finally granted.
Eight Ways to Spot Emotional Manipulation: Emotional Manipulators!
Thank you Matrix for outlining this. My Husband had put up with this sort of behaviour from his Ex wife for over 20 years. He has actually had some counselling to get over the 'post stress' this caused him, as he states :- "having to always apologize for stuff I never really did". People that have this type of personality disorder (if I may call it that) love playing the VICTIM, and often the only way they make friends is to suck people into feeling sorry for them. Ex Wife is still running up to people and labelling my Husband a wife beater when there is absolutely no evidence that suggests this as we have now been together over 18 years . Then the fun begins, emotional manipulators are like living with a 'parasite' and I can sympathize with my Husband as my own mother is like this and over the years I have learnt to deal with her manipulating efforts.
I personally think if you put some distance (live a long way from them) between you and a person with this type of behaviour it makes everything more manageable.
Never react to their outrageous demands, and take time to think what they actually are doing (the covert behaviour to get their own way).
I also analyze the demands an emotional manipulator requests, and actually avoid them for a few days, this gives me time to think through everything (This happens to me with my ageing mother!)
Lastly, never get angry or show emotion towards them, as this is their weapon that they will use against you.
Large increase in income - can I delay Child Support increase: Taxation and CSA
In reply to queries about doing tax returns, I will explain how my Husband views the whole system. After many years (10yrs) of doing the right thing, submitting tax, and having all the returns garnished by CSA, my Husband decided to forget about lodging his tax returns. That was over 6 years ago and CSA have only once asked him to submit his tax by mail (he is a write only client)….he just told them that they were " not the Taxation department and until The Taxation Dept. sent him a request he would not let his ex-wife know any of our info". Most of those years he had been unemployed and we relied on my income, so we are not terribly worried about not lodging tax as it means nothing. The down side to this was that CSA made us pay child support based on his last taxable income ( where he was working for wages in 2006). This was quite a low figure, so we just paid it until we appealed against (sucessfully) an increase the ex wanted the end of 2010, and through this procedure he found out the children were not living with her. Although he could have done has tax, the ex would have been able to know our household incomes and he felt this was an intrusion into our lives, bearing in mind he has not seen any of his children for about 16 years. I am not saying that what he has decided to do is RIGHT, but I agree with not paying for people who sit on Centrelink benefits (his ex wife) all their lives and expect us workers to pay for them. CSA doen't contact us these days. Husband always had his CSA figure in Credit, so he was not harassed for monies, as CSA had no reason to contact him. I remember us keeping a Budget and always allowing enough funds to be transferred over to CSA to keep the figure in Credit (using CSA Online). This month his CSA responsibilites will have totally finished as the youngest has just turned 18yrs and it appears he is working, bearing in mind CSA will come at us again when eventually hubbie submits his tax returns. Basically, the CSA system is a collection agency and if they haven't got the information that is required, they have to work within guidelines and rules. As a 'payer' a person has to work withing these guidelines. Hubbie had no bank accounts in his name and the properties we own are registered as joint tenants (with my adult daughter the third joint tenant). To have success with the CSA system you have to read their guidelines and rules carefully and work within the legislated structure.
Identity theft and CSA: Never Trust CSA - Take great care with your own Privacy.
After many years of dealing with CSA, we found the best way to deal with them was to only offer them information that we felt they required to come to a decision on Assessments and COA. This included refusing to give any information about myself (2nd wife) as I was very aware of the Privacy Act, having previously worked in the Finance Industry. We movied house after the first 6yrs together, and never divulged our new phone number to them ( or our new address) preferring to pay for a PO Box at the local post office which was so worthwhile! This was where we had all the CSA paperwork sent. Then, thanks to the great info on this website, my Husband became a 'WRITE ONLY' customer. Even when there is a COA in progress, husband decided to be notifed of the outcome after (as there was 28 days to appeal the decision) and refused to be part of the CSA Telephone Conference that is normally part of the Change of Assessment process. The most successful COA processes (that went in Hubbie's favour) were those where we offered minimal information. After all, it is the CSA Officer's job to research and locate information or have it confirmed, basically we would not actively participate in making the CSA's job easier by giving out info. Husband learnt very early in his separation, late one Saturday afternoon I answered his home phone with a person asking to speak to him (who presented as a friendly person, like an old friend!) only to find out it was a CSA officer. All I can say from experience that the phone is used in a very 'unprofessional' manner and also to interogate the Payee.
How to reduce child support: Child Support and Businesses.
From what I can see with CSA, it is much better to run a business in either Joint names or a Trust situation to be in a better financial position in regards to Child Support. A good accountant will probably be the best to advise on this and set everything up. Good friends of mine ran a business where everything was in the wife's name and he stayed home and reared their 4 children.If he had of contributed to the business, he would have been paying child support first (He had 2 children from a previous marriage), then tax and I guess the list goes on. Luckily, the business was several Cafes and the wife had experience in catering. Hubbie just stayed home and did the books, looked after the kids and worked in the business on the weekends to give his wife a break and she payed him a wage.
With Child Support, you have to work with what is legislated and work around the rules to enable you to move on with life. My hubbie has now finished with Child Support and has only gone back to working for wages in the last 12 months as he hasn't seen the kids in 17yrs but definitely had to pay for all of them. Over the years we developed a plan of attack, even calculating how many months he had left to pay for each child. I worked most of the hours (for wages)and we ran a small XXXX business which turned over about $20,000 pa. Hubbie also worked in the YYYY industry as well, but this was for cash. This enabled us to survive all those years and pay minimum child support.
Before he had his ABN, hubbie was paying $1200.00/mth working for wages as there were 6 children involved. We paid off the arrears (and subsequently negotiated nil penalties) with a credit card and always kept our child support in Credit, henceCSA never investigated us. Last year we lodged a successful COA where the payee could not provide evidence that any of the children were still living at home, hence the Child Support was stopped and it was deemed a terminating event. IfHubbie had not put in the COA, we would never have known that the kids were not living at home. Recently, now there is no Centrelink and Child Support the payee has moved 500km from the kids, even though the youngest is still only 17yrs. Hubbie has only heard this news via the social grapevine, but just goes to show you how people rort the system to the max.
Edit by Monteverdi to make it easier to read. Removed business types for your protection - CSA read these forums.