Ask Questions

This is where we will try to answer your questions!

We have posted a number of articles that may help you for a start.

Article about the general changes.
Living allowance changes
Why is one child worth more than the other.

You may however, have a different question you are seeking an answer to.

Ask your questions here in the comments.

If we can answer them we will.

If we cannot answer them, we will enlist the help of our Facebook community (a wealth of experienced child support payers and receivers, and non receivers..)

We look forward to hearing from you, and helping you if we can.


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  1. Hi there!
    My daughter is about to turn three in a couple of months. Her father has rarely seen her or played a part in her life thus far. He hasn’t paid for any child support.
    However I am working full time and am on the solo parent benefit.
    He recently started seeing her again and wants to start contributing.
    I wanted to know the best suggestion moving forward?

  2. Hi, I have 3 kids with and they live with their mother full time and I have them every second weekend and some. She works full time and receives working for families. She wasn’t on the sole benefit until recently but I have always been paying child support. So the question is Do I have to pay child support or full child support to IRD? Thanks

    1. How it works is that if you pay child support and your ex is on the sole parent benefit then IRD will take a portion to offset that. Anything above that amount will be passed on. Hope that helps and thanks for dropping by.

  3. Hi there,
    I currently pay child support for my two sons, I also contribute to schooling and fees and extra curricular. I just want to know what my rights are around paying for daycare? She is wanting me to cover these costs also as well. Does anyone know what child support should cover?

    1. Hi Luke there is no requirement to pay above and beyond the child support costs, however you can certainly choose to do so if you wish to help. Hope this helps. Cheers Rob

  4. My husband and I have bought a small farm that we intend to raise calves and finish beef on. My husband pays child support on 3 kids, who live with us 1/3 of the time. In our first year of business we didn’t make much money because of setting up costs etc ($22,000 earnt) so we incurred an overdraft of $30,000 for living. We had to go to an administrative review where they set his earnings at $50,000 because he was potentially able to earn this. So, effectively he had to take a job earning this and now we cant run the business as planned as it will take both of us to do it. However, as a business partnership, you have to divide the business income by how many partners (2) and you each pay your tax on your share, also child support etc. So now I run the farm, and we have less animals etc so i can manage by myself and IRD still want all of his job earnings and half of the farm earnings to based child support on even though I am working the farm. I also put in 3x the amount of money he did to purchase it so now its like im paying for his kids. Now, i don’t want to earn money off the farm as its not worth my efforts as most goes to supporting his kids when they are with us (1/3 of the time) and paying his ex. I also have 1 child full time. Its very stressful.
    Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Mandy
      If you have new information, eg something that wasn’t covered in the last review, you can apply for another review and ask that the decision in place be changed.
      Go through the decision you have and pick out the reasons used to increase your husband’s income, refute these and say why they aren’t accurate or reasonable. Your aim is to make them realise the current decision in place isn’t ‘just, equitable and otherwise proper’ to all parties, including the children-refer to s98C of the Child Support Act 1991.
      Provide as much evidence as you can to back up your points.
      The test to have an application considered is to establish special circumstances, then you have to meet the requirements of each ground.
      Regards (this advice is from Karen)

  5. Hi there im so glad ive found this forum as trying to negotiate this cs maze is exhausting! My partners ex and him have 2 children together… We have 1 each and figured it would just be unspoken law that there is no payments made by either and we raise the child we have care of and not ask anything of the other parent. Well the ex got a bee in her bonnet and jealous of my new role in their lives and secretly applied for child support for the kid she has care of. We knew nothing of this until we got harrasing messages by her and her family saying we had applied for cs and now she owes alot of money for the child we care for. She earns alot more than him and as it turns out when applying for cs it has somehow backfired and now we are entitled to all this money she refuses to pay! She rang crying and begging us to cancel it… She admitted to applying for cs for her 1 and made it clear that the other one wasnt to be applied for but they have anyway. Is this possible? Will ird automatically take the other child into account and now charge her even though she applied? And if we decide to can we even cancel something that SHE applied for? Thankyou so much for your feedback in advance!

    1. Hi Krystal,
      IRD can’t put a liability/entitlement in place for a child unless they receive an application from either parent so it appears she might not be giving you all the information available.
      The formula assessment uses both parent’s income so if her income is the higher then, yes, she will be made liable to pay.
      You could cancel if you wanted to, you could cancel all the debt too or have it collected
      . You could also tell her know you can apply again at any stage you like.
      Regards Karen

  6. Hi, I hope you can offer some advice please….My ex and I have 3 children, 9,13,17. 17yr old lives with him & his new partner & her kids. Our 17yr old informed me he’s working full time but my ex went to IRD to claim money from me for the 17yr old. In meantime I’m not getting any money for other 2 as IRD not sorted anything. I have new partner & declared him to IRD & I’m worse off but wanting to do right & keep legal as EX is playing dirty! I work as much as I can & my partner is also in difficulty with his EX over their issues. I received txt from my EX saying this:
    I’m sorry to inform you as you have gone through the ird I now do not have to pay any school fees or school clothing as this is taken in to account when the ird did their formula. The ird have told me to stop any payments so now it all goes directly through them. But he stopped paying me for the 17yr old when he was in my care months ago (he’s been with his father 4 weeks now) what do I do I can’t afford a lawyer. We have shared custody but since he has a new family he’s putting 2 younger children last & im doing my best for them but can’t afford extras for clothes and shoes for them. I need help.

    1. Hi Dee

      He doesn’t have to pay any more than the assessment IRD have put in place.

      There is not much you can do about the missed payments before you went to IRD.

      If IRD haven’t sorted anything you will have to keep chasing them.

      You could apply for an admin review to have him assessed on his full-time earnings and to have your entitlement increased so you’re getting more funds for the children in your care.

      If you need help with that, but can’t afford a lawyer we can highly recommend the services of

      Good luck and keep us posted.



  7. Hi there, extremely frustrated ATM, my child’s father has not paid child support since August, he is working full-time, making good money. He has no other dependants. Ird have found an income source, but it’s a “work in progress ” after telling me I would get a payment last month. I’m having to pick up extra shifts at work to make up for him not paying. I hardly see my kids because it’s always late shifts and they are asleep when I get home. I’m exhausted and at my wits end. Can they do anything more or just resign myself to the fact I’m working usually 7 days a week and don’t get to spend time with my family?

    1. First of all congratulations on doing all that you are to take care of your family. The best way (that I have seen) to get IRD motivated is to continually keep asking them for updates and what they are doing to chase up the money. I know it is not easy and also hard to find the time. If you don’t have time to call them you could keep on sending them secure mails through my IR. (that doesn’t take long). Good luck and I hope you manage to get some help eventually.

  8. Hi. We have just received a payment request to pay my husbands Ex child support.
    Q1 – he is self employed so which year is used to assess the income.
    Q2 – They have 4 children. We have 1 full time, the other 50/50 with the mum. We are also supporting the older 2 children who are now at Uni. Last year we had 3 full time and 1 on 50/50.
    The mother has close to a million dollars in property assets (walked away from the marriage with 1.2mill, and does not need to work, chooses not to work.

    Can I ask why we have to pay child support for the child that is 50/50 with us and she doesn’t have to pay child support for the child we have full time, nor has she ever paid child support for the older 2 boys that lived with us full time last year.
    Basically we have 3 full time and she has 1 on 50/50 care.

    Just seems a bit crazy that she doesn’t need the money, we do as they chose to live with us. Thank you.

    1. Hi there not sure on which year it is I think it depends when he submits his tax return etc. I agree that the system is very unfair in cases like this. If you at least claim child support for the one in your care full time though I think you would get the minimum at least which might help a bit? Could be worth a shot. Otherwise you could also try an admin review with the help of someone like if you were not comfortable doing it yourselves. Thanks for dropping by. Cheers

  9. Hi,
    My partner does not work as he is the stay at home parent of our 3 children. However he has a child to a previous partner. Is it realistic that IRD asks for child support that I will essentially have to pay? This seems like a big flaw in the system….I can understand that if he was on a benefit that money would be taken from that, but he is not eligible being my partner to receive one.

  10. Kia ora all – I have a question that I’m not sure on…
    Is there a reduction in my child support if my X partner has a new relationship and is spending time with them?
    If so, how do I go about addressing this, for example; can I submit evidence to IRD and what do they accept as evidence
    Warm regards

  11. Hi Rob,

    I’ve just got a child support assessment done and liable to pay a large monthly amount (the mother is on a sickness benefit) but the same time I’ve been made redundant. What can I do now?

  12. Hiya, I am the receiving parent of child support. The liable parent has not paid in full for 2 financial years. He has a large overdue amount. I recently had to start receiving a benefit.
    My question is, when the overdue amount is paid, will I receive the child support that I was owed from the months I was not on a benefit?
    So confused…. as I know that child support paid goes to off set the benefit you receive.
    But I can’t find any information ANYWHERE on the money that was owed before you started receiving a benefit. I hope like hell that I still receive it, as I feel like I’m still entitled to it. 😩 I hope you can help me understand 😞

  13. Hi there!
    My child support payments have decreased from $226 per month to $160 per month. I’ve just applied for the sole parent benefit so my income has obviously decreased. Would this be the reason for the decrease in child support too?
    Many thanks

  14. Hi there just wanting to know while on the job seekers allowance how much child support will I be paying I’ve been unemployed for a year recovering no financial assistance from the government at all I’ve only just started to receive the job seekers allowance so how do they calculate what is payed plz help 😟😟

  15. Hi,
    Can IRD pursue father for child support if they mother has not completed a child support application? Mum was on benefit for 6months refused to complete the child support form and received a sanction for this, father named in birth certificate and IRD is pursuing father as liable for this period of time (with ridiculous amounts of penalties added).

  16. Hi,,, i have a 3 year old son who i have shared care of, friday 4.30pm till monday 6.30am, so yes i work all week and have my son all weekend,, my ex and I split 2 years ago and i have been paying child support since,,which im happy to do as we have a private aggreement,, and i know children are not cheap,, if i go through the ird system would be paying about the same anyway,, however at present ,my ex only works 28 hours a week so she can qualify for support from winz, she had her hours reduced to do this, if she did work a 40 hour per week job she would earn more then i do making my payment even less , is there any ird form or application to have her situation viewed and if there is any reason why she cant work more to help herself,

    1. Hi Dallas, there are review options if you are within the IRD system. But I doubt there is much that can be done if you are not. If you are managing to stay outside the system, my recommendation would be to do what you can to stay that way. Good luck and good on you for doing what you can to support your son.

  17. Hi Rob,

    I have a 10 year old daughter whom I have been paying child support for since myself and her Mum separated.
    Just recently she has been sending me bills for school fees , stationary , and school shoes etc, my daughter also has extra reading lessons which I don’t think she needs anymore , but her Mum continues to send and expects me to pay half for everything..
    My question is am I obligated to pay all this extra stuff or does my child support cover this?
    Kind Regards

    1. Hi Marc. There is not really any policy around what child support covers. You can choose to help if you like or not. I know that is not very helpful but unfortunately that is the system we have to deal with. Cheers rob

  18. My partner pays child support to the mother of his children. This year he has had a change in work and will only be working part time now. I know we can get his estimate of income changed to help us out but my question is she too has also changed jobs in the last 6 months and is now earning more per hour and working more hours. As IRD take into account your previous years income and hers was less, can we request that they check what her new income is as it would have increased by more than 15%??

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