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Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: UK Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34105
Experience:  25 years experience of all aspects of family law
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Hi. A tribunal decision was made whereby a variation was awarded

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Hi. A tribunal decision was made whereby a variation was awarded and in doing so a recalculation of maintenance through the csa was to be actioned. However, the csa have informed me that in law the variation cannot be applied due to the fact i was and still am in receipt of working tax credits. The csa themselves asked for the decision to be set aside but the tribunal have refused. The csa have advised me to take this to the upper tier tribunal as the csa cannot enforce the variation due to it being wrong in law. Please help, where can i find the exact regulation to strengthen my case to the upper tier tribunal

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Province/Country relating to question : UK

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I have searched online for regualtions but cannot find the exact rules that apply when tribunal decisions are made relating to variations

claire :


claire :

Thank you for your question.

claire :

I will do my best to assist but it would be helpful if you could confirm which Tribunal made what decision that the CSA could not action?


My husbands ex wife applied to the csa for a re-assessment of his case due to income she believed he was receiving. The csa investigated and found there were no grounds for the case to be re-assessed as all income had been accounted for.


The csa sent notification that her application for a variation had failed. After a couple of months had passed his ex-wife appealed the csa decision and again her appeal failed, she then applied to the first tier tribunal for them to look at the decision again. The first tier tribunal then decided that they would actually make a decision to add a large sum onto my husbands earned income figure as they believed he received dividends- which he did not- dividends were received by another shareholder. A decision notice was given on 3/12/12 to state that in order to increase my husbands earned income figure they would do so by applying a "variation" to the csa case. The csa however advised that they cannot action the tribunal decision as it would be "wrong in law", this is due to the fact that variations cannot be applied to any csa case if the person is in receipt of working tax credits. myself and my husband are in receipt of working tax credit and so the csa have advised us to hang fire whilst they pursue the decsion notice made on 3/12/12 to be set aside. They did ask for a statement of reason and then applied for the decision to be set aside and they highlighted their reasons why, yet last week we received another decision notice to state that the First tier tribunal were not going to set aside their original decision. Since then the csa have adivsed us to ask permission from the first tier tribunal to go onto appeal to the upper tier tribunal, they themselves have also requested permission and after i asked my question on here yesterday we actually received in the post confirmation that the "secretary of state" was asking for permission to appeal to the upper tier tribunal, we received copies of the application form completed by the "secretary of state" whom i presume is the csa, and this does again highlight the laws in applying a variation.


Sorry, the Tribunal we originally attended was in Blackpool. The csa are advising us that they cannot lawfully amend my husbands case by adding the variation onto it and that is why they are pursuing it further as well as ourselves. They advised that usually a decision made by a tribunal would stand but in this particular case it goes against their regulations. We have never had to deal with anything like this and wondered what if the decision is not set aside? Can the csa unlawfully apply the variation to his csa case? if so then it would be against their regulations and what would we do then to appeal? it is so confusing Thanks for your help

Does the notice you have received quote the Regulation?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi, the original decision notice just states "it is just and equitable to make a variation" But the decision notice that we received last week to confirm the original decision is not set aside states "This is because none of the conditions set out in rule 37(2) is satisfied, there was no procedural irregularity" Then the paperwork we got yesterday states the reasons why the decision needs to be set aside. It quotes that due to being in receipt of working tax credit then in accordance with paragraphs (1)(c) and (5) of regulation 7 and regulation 27(6) of the child support (variations) regulations 2000. It goes onto say that the first tier tribunal erred in law and need to review their decision in accordance with rule 40 of the tribunal procedure (first tier tribunal) (social entitlement chamber) rules 2008.


To an extent you are in a reasonable safe position insofar as all the legal arguments are being dealt with on your behalf.
The fact is the CSA cannot do something that Statute does not allow them to do - so something has to change
Either The CSA are reading their rules wrong (not impossible) or the Tribunal was wrong (equally likely)
Your concern - very correctly - is about the potential arrears which will accrue whilst they are arguing the matter as well as what happens if the Tribunal finds against you.
There is a higher appeals process which you can use - details here
Finally you can get a great deal of support from this group
I hope that this is of assistance
Clare and other UK Family Law Specialists are ready to help you

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