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Freddie Lombard
Freddie Lombard, Attorney
Category: South Africa Law
Satisfied Customers: 2464
Experience:  Practicing attorney and conveyancer with 16 years post article experience.
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Pearl, can you tell me what % of a salary a father should

Customer Question

Hi Pearl, can you tell me what % of a salary a father should be paying as maintenance?
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Customer: My brother in law is getting his life back together
JA: The Lawyer will need to help you with this. Please give me a bit more information, so we can help you best.
Customer: her earns R4000 and contributes R500
JA: Anything else I can tell the Lawyer before I connect you two?
Customer: His ex is witholding access as she says he does not pay enough
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Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: South Africa Law
Expert:  Freddie Lombard replied 8 months ago.
Hi there Thank you for your question. I will try to assist you in answering it today but please feel free to ask as many follow up questions as you like until you are 100% satisfied. There is no fixed amount or percentage payable. Each individual case is decided upon its own unique facts. In South Africa, the common law with regards ***** ***** maintenance of children require that each parent support their children proportionate to their individual means. This requires a balancing act: The financial needs of the child needs to be established firstly. This will include inter alia, a roof over his head, food, schooling,medical costs etc. For instance, if there are two children that needs to be maintained and the rent of the house that they are living in is for instance, R 3 000.00, and they are living with the custodial parent only, the amount of R 3000.00 will be divided into three. R1000.00 each for the children and the parent. (b). Once this is done, you need to establish what portion of that amount each parent is liable for. For example; let's assume that the father earns R20 000.00 per month and the mother earns R10 000.00 per month. The father therefore earns 66, 6% of the combined income and the mother earns 33, 3% of the income. The father will then have to pay at least 66.6% of the children's maintenance need. (c). The final step in this process is affordability. The court will consider the finances of a parents to ascertain if he/she can afford to pay the portion of maintenance that he/she is supposed to be paying. The court will only consider reasonable expenses by the parents and no luxuries will be considered at the expense of the child. If it is established that he/she can pay what is needed, if not then the court will look if the other parent can afford to fill the gap. If not, then the expenses will simply have to be reduced. The issues of maintenance and access are also not related to one another, and the mother of the child cannot withhold access on the basis as you suggest ie, that in her estimation, the father is not paying enough maintenance. The Courts are very clear that not only do parents have a right of access to their children, but children also have a right of access to their parents. I suggest that you brother gets the assistance of an attorney from the Legal Aid Board to assist him in filing an application for access to his child. It is never OK to refuse a parent access to his children (and children access to their parent) just because such a parent does not have the financial means to pay more maintenance. I hope this answered your question. I know it will take an extra minute of your time to rate my service, but if you do not rate it, I do not get paid by the website so I would really appreciate it if you would be so kind as to rate my service positively. Feel free to ask further question here on this topic at no extra cost if you need more information. Regards