Hi there - my ex-partner and I split up in early 2000 after we'd had a son together in 1998; we never married and I have brought up the child. As part of a financial settlement, I took legal advice on, and subsequently agreed to, a Clean Break agreement which stated that he would give me £30k plus £200 monthly payments towards child maintenance, in return for parental responsibility. This was signed in or around May 2000 but, whilst the lump sum was paid immediately, the monthly payments dried up within 18 months. With lots of other things going on at that time and the copy of the agreement lost within various moves, my only recourse at the time appeared to be the CSA (which back then was a slightly different animal to the one we know and love today). To cut a long and very turgid story short, they were hopeless. The father then started paying £200 a month again from September 2009 to date. How do I then recoup the outstanding £16/17k from the father? Could I pursue him for breach of the original agreement - I think I can obtain a copy from the original firm of solicitors? (By the way, the father and son maintained a good relationship for the first 10 years, which was wholly encouraged by me - I know this is entirely unrelated, but worth knowing all the same!). Any advice you can pass on would be gratefully received. Thanks, KJ
Yes, a formal CSA assessment was originally made back in 2002/3; as he is self-employed, this came back at £5 per week. I then re-applied with a variation and this was upped to £200 per month which was paid several times and then stopped again. I can't quite remember the full details but I then re-applied with a variation, which then triggered a tribunal in September 2009. Days beforehand, he came back with the offer of £200 per month privately which has remained paid ever since. However, in parallel, the original CSA payments continued to build up unpaid and when this breached the £10,000 mark, they got back in touch with me. When I explained about the £200 private arrangement, they then netted down the outstanding CSA debt to some £6,900. The last conversation I had with them was that, as he is continuing to pay privately, then they cannot pursue him for the debt, unless I closed my bank account down to stop his standing orders so that I was no longer in receipt of private payments. I gave this solution about a 5 second think and, given the amount of time, money, energy, effort and stress over the years, I really cannot pursue via the CSA anymore. Hence the re-think over the Clean Break Order. Thanks.
Thanks very much, Claire. Could I sue him privately for the outstanding maintenance, either via the County Court or High Court?
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).