Are Armed Forces Singled out by CSA

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Masters, Jan 24, 2008.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. Hi,

    I would like to know what personnel views are on CSA and how they seem to target soldiers and it appears that they then seem to take the maxium amount from personnel. I have known a lot of people get out and move to another country as they just can't afford to live. Where i support that we should support our children through life, it appears there is no support for the absent fathers and all the law is on the mothers side.
  2. I couldnt agree more i used to pay the CSA my son is now over 16 and working and the CSA do activley go after the military as they are easy targets. They know that all they have to do is write to APC and bobs your uncle the money is deducted. As a Clk i see loads of csa letters coming through and some of the figures are just stupid in the extrem. Many soldiers do pay without the csa getting involved quite happily untill the csa get involved. Thank god the csa are getting wound up this year lets just hope that the new agency spends more time going after perants who dont pay at all than the captive audiance they have with us.
  3. Not doubting the truth of your personal experiences, but from all that has been written on the incompetence of the CSA (not fit for role etc), it's amazing that they can manage to target anyone with any degree of success.

    Then again, with the way that the Army offers up all info to them, it's a bit like shooting fish in a barrel. From their point of view, why go after some semi legal benfit scrounging sperm donator who'll twist and turn like a twisty turny thing to avoid payment and will only be "Able to afford " £3.75 a week, and will have to be dragged to court to pay that, when LCpl Fcuknuts can be soaked for as much as they feel like, with the Army offering the poor bastard's shekels up as a direct deduction?

    The other side of the coin is why shouldn't LCpl Fcuknuts be forced to pay for his children? If he doesn't, we all pick up the tab.

    It seems to me that the choices are:

    1. Give up on CSA and everyone pays through increased tax. Or at least tax payers do.

    2. Give CSA even more power to go after the civvy deadbeats avoiding payment. Like we don't have enough powerful govt organisations acting like the Gestapo.

    Neither particularly attractive. Unless anyone has a better plan?
  4. I don't think it is a case of "targetting" service personnel. It is simply more difficult for serving soldiers/airmen/sailors/marines to evade the CSA. The fact is that absent parents in the forces cannot hide any of their income due to a fixed monthly wage, and there is very limited opportunity for additional income due to ops, exercises, duties, training, etc.

    My personal story with the CSA is too long to document here, but I can vouch for the fact that it is easier for a civvy to evade making the payments by not declaring their full income. Alternatively, they can claim being unemployed - perhaps legitimately - but "forget" to inform the CSA when they become employed again. It can take several years before a review form is sent out by the CSA and they can only claim repayments from the day they have requested the review - not retrospectively for the period the individual has been in employment.

    My bold - The extreme figure is not unique to the forces. Whilst serving until 1997, I paid a fair old whack to the CSA. Currently, and with two of my three children no longer considered dependent - they have left home and have families of their own - I pay the CSA for the upkeep of one child the same percentage of my wage as I did 11 years ago for three children. The new rules assess the absent parent on how many children are dependent and take a percentage for each child, but if you were assessed under the old rules, you stay on the old rules! If I was now assessed on the new rules, I would pay just over half what I currently pay.

    (For the record, I am in full time employment and pay the full amount the CSA request/demand, and have done for the past 13 years - two years as a soldier and eleven as a civvy. I have had opportunities to move overseas and stop paying, or change jobs in order to play the unemployment card, but I feel much better being now being able to look my adult children in the eye and state honestly that I always made the payments towards their upbringing, even if I wasn't always present).
  5. Biped

    Biped LE Book Reviewer

    As already pointed out, the CSA has a deliberate policy of targetting those within easy reach. Those that are more difficult to get hold of, they simply give up on.

    This is not supposition - they've actually said so themselves.

    So, who's the biggest captive audience for CSA money-grabbing - why, it's the prolific shaggers in the Armed Forces. Let's also consider that the MOD is the FIRST gobment department in most cases to enforce law changes, such as the weights and measures act and the like, it follows that the CSA sees armed forces personnel as easy meat.

    In most cases, the amounts demanded from soldiers will be punitive in respect of the fact that the mothers will not get that which is claimed off the soldiers, and the money taken will make up for all the people they can't be bothered to find.
  6. Another example of a target setting culture that sort of addresses the problem but doesn't on closer inspection. Like a hospital waiting lists it's not how long it is its how quick you get to the top. They (the CSA and the new agency in their turn) shouldn't be allowed to count forces personnel towards their targets.
  7. How about:

    1. Liability to pay should be dependent on the circumstances; i.e. leaving the wife and kid(s) should mean higher contributions than finding out some slapper you went bareback with and who ltold you she was on the pill, wasn't.

    2. Amount paid should be capped at, or at least reflect, the actual costs of raising a child. It should not (as at present) have the potential to exceed this amount so as to provide a nice sum of extra pocket money for the mother.

    3. The amount paid should be on a sliding scale to reflect the amount of time the kids spend with each parent, and the 'residdent parent' label dropped. At present you can look after the kids 182 days of the year and still be paying out.

    4. Reasonable travel expenses in going to see the kids should be deducted from the amount to be paid, to prevent the current situation of the absent parent nt being able to afford to go and see them once the CSA has made its deductions and ensure that it isn't costing that parent vastly more than the other.
  8. oldbaldy

    oldbaldy LE Moderator Good Egg (charities)
    1. Battlefield Tours

    I believe the Plod are easy targets as well.
  9. 1. Why? If the father doesn’t pay, we all pay via tax. Why should tax payers who have no responsibility for the production of the child have to pay when one of the parents doesn't because "it was a one night stand". Man the fuck up, and take responsibility for your actions.

    2. Agreed.

    3. Agreed, so long as that doesn’t mean that the cost is picked up by the tax payer.

    4. Agreed, as for 3.
  10. Anyone on benefits generally only pays £5 a month.

  11. I agree that it's not something the taxpayer should have to pick up, but it's also the mother who has to face up to her responsibilities. Now that's a glib and fairly redundant thing to say in the case of the married housewife with 3 kids whose husband decides he's had enough and p1sses off with someone else; on the other hand it is appropriate to some extent in the case of:

    Exhibit A: brother-in-law of a good friend. Signed to a Premiership side at the age of 16. Apparently deliberately entrapped (somehow this came out in court) by some older slapper, who succeeded in getting pregant - although didn't hear about this for some time, until the demands for support came, for a son he didn't know he had.

    Exhibit B: me. Had been seeing someone a short while. Was on the verge of dumping her as she was being a bit of a bitch - and had shagged her ex. She had just started on the pill but as hadn't been on it long enough, we used a condom. This broke. She took the morning after pill, (she claims - will never really know) but after 2-3 days, by which time it isn't all that effective. Now she has more control over her fertility and the decision to have a child than I do, and there was never any question that I wanted one. I did all that I was able to do to try and prevent this happening. But the bad luck falls somewhere and it has of course cost me a fortune. I'm not bitter about it anymore - because of my son - but I'm not sure the situation could be said to be entirely fair. Not much you can do about it though until they invent a male contraceptive injection or something!

    My last point is that whilst I agree with your view that there's no reason the cost should fall on the taxpayer and that in the case of 'B' above, then yes I was involved and no-one else is in the frame to pay, it's worth remembering that the CSA was established against as much against a moral backdrop as a fiscal one. One thing it has never done is save money, because it costs so much to collect every £1 of contribution, and one thing it was never even intended to do was improve the lives of single parents.
  12. In my experience my ex decided to move on a whim from the midlands to Newcastle. It was going to cost me a small fortune just to visit my kids. I had a choice to drive there and stay somewhere or drive back and stay in my quarter - both of which were just more expense. Although I wasn't paying through the CSA I did speak to them to ensure I was acting roughly within guidelines (tailored to my circumstances) I spoke to the CSA about a reduction due to this massive increase in costs that were in no way of my own making. The results were ridiculous - basically they would take the cost of travelling away from my disposable income (pretty much everything after tax and NI) and then take a percentage of what was left. For example £1000 disposable income I'd be paying 25% = £250. If I was having to travel a fair distance say for example costing me £200 a month more my disposable income would be taken as £800, they'd then take 25% meaning I'd still be paying £200!

    The criminal aspect is that a large percentage of women receiving CSA will not spend the money on kids but use it to enhance their own lifestyle.
  13. Clownbasher,

    You said it mate, bad luck. I do sympathise, I have friends in similar positions, and there but for the grace of God etc...


    Why should I and every other tax payer have to pay for your bad luck? The kid was born, you are the father, therefore you are responsible for him and it's right that you should contribute to his upbringing.

    Hard, but fair.
  14. I agree. The unfortunate area is trying to prove the intent of using contraception and the belief on who ever's side that a child was not wanted. It always seems unfair that a woman can have an abortion without the father's consent yet can have a child where the father has taken all reasonable steps and is then financially liable for something he has no control over.
  15. Exactly. Mine went one better and moved to Northern Ireland, which is a little difficult to drive or take a train to. Hence the travel involves a flight, hiring a car and finding a hotel.