LawAnswers.com.au - Australia's #1 Legal Community

LawAnswers.com.au is a community of 10,000+ Australians, just like you, helping each other.
Ask a question, respond to a question and better understand the law today!
Join us, it only takes a minute:

QLD Child Support - What are My Rights?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by Sam Morris, 7 July 2014.

  1. Sam Morris

    Sam Morris Member

    Joined:
    7 July 2014
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have two kids (six and seven) and me and my ex have a private agreement for child support of $100 per week. However I haven't been working since May 28th 2014. I don't get to see the kids and she hardly let's me talk to them on the phone. She has had 4 children to other people since having my two, none of which she gets child support for. Between November 2013, and May 2014, I made over 40 000 and I'm worried I'm going to have to pay back pay. What are my rights here?
     
  2. rebeccag

    rebeccag Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    8 April 2014
    Messages:
    147
    Likes Received:
    34
    G'day Sam,
    Which state/territory are you in?
     
  3. Sam Morris

    Sam Morris Member

    Joined:
    7 July 2014
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
  4. Sophea

    Sophea Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    16 April 2014
    Messages:
    2,300
    Likes Received:
    335
    A court registered agreement for child maintenance does not stop being in force when the payer is unemployed, unless the order or agreement specifically states so. The person paying child support, however, can apply to the Registrar to suspend collection of the amounts payable for the period that he/she is receiving a social security pension or benefit.

    You can find more info here http://guides.dss.gov.au/child-support-guide/3/4/5
     
  5. Sam Morris

    Sam Morris Member

    Joined:
    7 July 2014
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    I forgot to say, she went back to child support and we did it properly. She now only gets 40 a month but won't let me see the kids. If it goes to court will I definitely get visitation and maybe some phone calls to them?
     
  6. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    23 July 2014
    Messages:
    2,319
    Likes Received:
    423
    Your first step in regards to seeing the kids is to set up a family dispute resolution conference. Legal Aid can do this for you, and both parties are usually supported by a solicitor. Be prepared for a waiting period - ours took about four months, and would've been maybe three if there wasn't a minor run-around with Legal Aid.

    In FDR, the aim is to help the parents reach an outcome that reflects the best interests of the child, which (provided there are no significant risks of violence or harm to the child) means having a meaningful relationship with both parents. Both parties are expected to make a genuine effort to reach an outcome, which means discussing and deciding on the 'time spent with' and 'communication with' each parent, among other things.

    No matter the outcome of FDR, a certificate will then be issued, which is needed before you can begin the court process. This will also be given to you - and as I understand it, only you - if the mother refuses to attend FDR, or refuses to negotiate 'time spent with' provisions. That means she will be unable to pursue court if the mediator deems her to be unreasonable in negotiations, but you will.

    In terms of child support, it is important that you continue paying according to the assessment. My non-legal opinion is that a parent who refuses to support the child emotionally by giving access to the non-residential parent, should also be refused financial support by the non-residential parent, but that's irrelevant until the system is fixed. Anyway, the court does consider how supportive you have been to the child, so while you may have been unable to contact or see the children, you will be able to show you are still committed to their upbringing financially.

    So, I guess in short...

    Will you get phone calls and visits if it goes to court? Yes, provided there is no risk of family/domestic violence, or exposure thereto.

    FDR first, though. Keep paying child support. Be civil to the mother no matter how angry she makes you. Remember, being the reasonable parent always looks better than being the troublesome parent. And contact Legal Aid for free legal advice and to organise FDR.
     

Share This Page

Loading...