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.

The best way to get help is to join one of our fantastically supportive Facebook groups.

Childsupport NZ – Receiving Parents
Childsupport NZ – Paying Parents

Or you can ask your questions here in the comments. Due to life getting in the way I am not actively answering questions on here, but often others will give their advice.


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  1. My dad has been paying child support all my life , because he left my mum before I was born , I’m not entirely too sure if my mum was collecting the money while I was with her but around 2015 when I was 16 I wasn’t living with her at the time would I be able to receive the child support money my dad had been paying from then to when I turned 18 which was last year ?

    1. Hi Star,
      If you left home at 16 and your Mum wasn’t supporting you, her entitlement to collect child support should have ended the day you left her home.
      If she didn’t tell IRD you’d left home and continued to collect child support, once IRD found out what had happened they would end the assessment from the date you left home and your Mum would be required to repay anything she’d received incorrectly.
      The overpaid funds would be returned to your Dad.
      An application for child support can’t be backdated, it can only be accepted from the date it’s received by IRD, so if you’re over 18 and not at school there is no ability for you to claim any assistance now.

  2. Hi I’m
    I’m a bit of a situation, my baby was born extremely premature and I wasn’t in a relationship with the father but he was their for the birth, during everything that had happened a the time of birth he had filled out forms for me as I was unable to and I had no family with me and he named himself the father without my knowledge on some documents. We think it must have been the registration form. Id cut ties with him and never named him the father as I wanted to start fresh with me and my baby (I was young then) Few years have passed and I got a birth certificate and see his name on it I was shocked and tracked him down that’s how I found out he had signed some papers at the hospital I have no problem with him and was wondering will he be stung with owing child support ? And will I be in trouble with ird and Winz for not naming the father myself?

    1. Hi Murl
      If the father has had his name placed on the child’s birth certificate he can be made liable to pay child support.
      Winz would have asked you to complete a child support application when you went onto a benefit, if you didn’t do this they have the ability to apply a $28pw sanction on your benefit.
      IRD will be wanting a child support assessment put in place if you are receiving a benefit

  3. Hi,
    If I have a private maintenance arrangement, that IRD clearly state on their webpage ‘they don’t need to know about’, how come it gets assessed as income when it is money I have had to already fork out for daily living costs? Those monthly payments I get are reimbursement not income, surely?

    1. Hi Rachel
      The formula assessment doesn’t take into account an existing private arrangement. You can however apply for an admin review (Ground 1) to have your private payments taken into account

  4. I’m not on the birth cert for my 3 year old son, I want to go for full custody of him since my ex has tried to abandon him 3 different times on me and also has taken him out in the middle of the night to sell drugs. Will i get full if i provide proof of these claims?

    1. Hi Dan
      You need to see a lawyer on this one. The events you’ve described can form part of an application for custody, just remember the decision is made by the Court and a decision can be handed down that neither of you are happy with.

  5. Hi I applied for CS through Work and Income back in 2010 a few months after my daughter was born. Father is named on her bc. I recently found out from IRD that Winz had put a sanction on my benefit (which I was unaware of) . Can they do that even though I provided the correct information when I took in the form? Winz photocopied her bc and said they would send it off. IRD said they did receive my form and have emailed Winz to stop the sanction. Fingers crossed they owe me money, I could do with some blessing lol I had a gut feeling something wasn’t right because my son was the only name on myird online (for CS) but not my daughter, and that’s why I called up IRD and queried about CS for my daughter. It’s so confusing and it doesn’t help when Winz turns a deaf ear from their mistake. And I have no idea if money was deducted from my benefit or not. She will be 8 next month. I’m already dreading my phone call to Winz tomorrow. Anyways thanks for this awesome forum, it’s very helpful ☺

  6. I was with my ex for ten years and we have two children, now aged 13 and 7. I worked throughout our entire relationship, other then a few months maternity leave for each of my daughters.

    I still work full time as well as studying towards a diploma.

    We have been split for 3 and a half years.

    He stopped working, when we split, moved in with his Mum, forcing me to move back to his town as our house was with his farm job, and has not worked ever since. (Not on the books anyway!)

    He is more then capable physically and mentally and intelligent enough to get and hold down a job.

    We have 50/50 custody (as of late last year after I fought and fought to get it) and I pay child support, paying in full, every month on time. I do not earn a lot of money as I am in training (my wage is average for a 36 year old in an Administration based job in a small town) I am happy to pay my way for my children, but now one is 13 and the CS has gone up, my questions are:-

    – Why is he not obligated to get a job?
    – Why should I pay for him to sit at home and sleep all day?
    – Why am I punished for his life choices?
    – What can I do about it?

    Any help would be appreciated.


    Frustrated Mum

    1. Hi there,
      If the children’s father is choosing not to work you can apply for an admin review to have him assessed on his capacity to earn, not what he’s choosing to earn or not earn. You’d base your application on his qualifications/work experience and anything else that you know to show he is capable of earning more. If he’s working for cash that’s something you’d raise but you’d need to be able to provide some sort of evidence to back up your stance

    2. Hi I feel like I’m in the same boat and wondering if you took any action. My ex has been on a benefit for five years while I have gained a degree and gained full employment. We have shared care of 2 of our children, he has full care of one and I have full care of 2 (although one is now 18 and one 16 and leaving home to study – so perhaps both counted as independent!?) He plays computer games all night and is building a house (he is mortgage free) while I am left paying rent with a huge student loan and now I’ll have to pay him child support!!! I will already end up with $680 per week beforehand. It is so frustrating and gutting particularly as up until this week I have paid 100% of everything for the two children we have shared care of. Please any help or advice would be greatly appreciated

  7. If i get working for families does that mean the liable paremt has yo pay child support or is that completly different

    1. Hi Aro
      Working for Families and Child Support are two different things, under two different pieces of legislation but both administered through ird. WFF is means tested so as long as you meet the criteria you’re entitled to WFF.
      CS is paid by the liable parent if you’ve applied for it, and provided you’re not receiving a benefit you’re entitled to receive the cs as well. If you’re not receiving a benefit it’s up to you whether the children’s father is made liable to pay cs through ird. You could have a private arrangement where he contributes to the children’s upkeep direct to you, or you could choose not to ask him to pau cs.

  8. Hi my ex earns good money we are trying private arrangement. ($800 a month for 2 kids. If we were going thru IRD it would be well over $1100 a month) This hasnt started yet. I have the kids 100% of the time. We are going to split school holidays. He has suggested that when he has the kids he doesnt pay child support for that week. Is this what happens if we were going thru IRD or is he just being shady. Thanks

    1. Hi Mandy,
      When the assessment runs through ird he would pay 52 weeks a year regardless of the times he has the children. If you are sending the children to him with their clothes shoes etc you could argue that his child support doesn’t just cover food it covers all their other needs too so you’re still providing for them even if they are with him.

  9. hi,really need help with this one.
    My son has come into my care fulltime(hes now 6yrs old)i have overpaid just over $1200 in child support,this $1200 accumulated over 2 and half months.
    i was the liable paying parent before he came into my care,after he came into my care,i was on irds case about my son being in my care and they were still taking child support out of my wages.
    i have called them and emailed them regarding this,child support is still being taken out of my wages as we speak.i was hoping someone could help me go about getting it all refunded,as it does state im in credit on my myir account.
    I have spoken to his mum about this and she said she cant do anything as shes already told ird that hes in my care full time.

    1. Hi Nore
      If you’ve become the receiving parent you could cancel child support through IRD as long as you’re not receiving a govt benefit. If there is no ongoing child support liability in place for the child you can ask for the credit to be refunded.
      s216(3) of the Child Support Act 1991 says:
      On receiving a request from the person, the Commissioner must refund—
      all of the excess financial support if the person neither has, nor is known to have at some future time, liability to make further payments of financial support under this Act; or
      in any other case, so much of the excess financial support as has not been paid to the payee.

  10. My husband has a private agreement for child support costs for his son. The child has just turned 18 but we have since discovered he has been working full time since the end of last year meaning almost 6 months of payments we shouldn’t have made. The mother did not let us know he was working full time. Do we have any rights here? What steps should we be taking? Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks

    1. Hi Rach,
      If the private agreement is being collected by IRD. You need to contact IRD and ask them to check the child’s income records, which will reflect whether or not he has been working full time.
      If your husband was paying direct to the mother the only thing you could do is take the matter to the Disputes Tribunal and try and get judgement against the mother for the overpaid child support, you would have to be able to prove the child had been working full time.

  11. Hi there
    I have a 5 year old son, his father had left when he was a new born, so I couldn’t sign his name for birth cert or anything like that so he wasn’t put on it. I am now thinking of putting him on the birth cert as he wants to be on it. Will he have to start paying child support and will I get back pay for the years he’s missed? He is currently working too. Thank you!

    1. Hi there,
      If you lodged a child support application with IRD at any stage after your son was born, and it was declined because you didn’t have proof of paternity, the application will have been held in IRD’s system.
      Once the father’s name is added to the child’s birth cert or paternity is established in another way, the application being held will be activated from the date it was originally received by IRD.
      If no application was previously lodged, you could lodge one once paternity is officially established but it could only be activated from the date the application was received

  12. Hello,

    My mother and I moved to Australia when I was 4 years old. My father remained in New Zealand and has not paid child support since then (now 24 years ago). What avenue is available to me to recover unpaid child support?

    Thank you in advance.

    1. Hi QueeNZLander,
      It all depends on whether a child support application was lodged with IRD at any stage. If your mother did apply for child support but they’ve been unable to collect for whatever reason the debt will stay on their system and she could follow up with IRD to see what’s happening.
      If a child support application was never lodged with IRD it can’t be done now, IRD can’t accept retrospective applications. It’s unlikely you’d ever be able to enforce payment of child support for the previous 18 years privately.

  13. Hello,

    ME and my ex have a baby girl she is 2 months old I don’t want him to get stung by Ird with child support but want to do a private agreement,

    But I’m unsure of an amount and don’t know all the avenues a child incurs costs … like accommodation, power, general baby care items, baby activity groups, medical … chiropractor ect..

    I just need help cause I am going on solo benefit because I now have a full time job looking after baby and plan to find a part time job as soon as possible and look at daycare aswell..

    My ex sees her every second weekend.

    Please help I just think $100 isn’t enough and that’s what he Has been contributing since I talked to him about child support about 3 weeks ago..

    Any info will be helpful.

    1. Hi Brooklyn

      If you go onto a benefit winz will ask you to complete a child support application which they will forward on to ird. Your ex will be made liable to pay child support through ird and while you’re receiving a benefit if what he pays monthly is less than the benefit you receive monthly, the funds will be paid back to the govt to offset the benefit you’ve received. If ird have made him liable you can’t have a private agreement until you come off benefit. If you don’t complete the child support application for winz they will apply a sanction to the amount of benefit you’re entitled to.

  14. I have two little girls that I now care for full time. I recently applied for child support and the assessment has arrived back based on our 2017 tax returns (no problem). My only question is he has a company, so his tax return shows $48,000 shareholders salary (so he only pays the 17.5% tax rate and the rest of his earning (profit) is paid through the company (so that he pays only company tax rates, not income tax rate of 33% if you earn over $48,000). Should the assessment take into account the company profit for the year/or the amount of drawings??? Also would the amount of profit/drawings (whatever they assess on) be split between us as we were both company directors?? When he left, he took all the company assets and paperwork and his lawyer has written to say the company is no longer trading and that he has set up a new company.

    1. Hi
      You’d need to apply for an administrative review to have his actual income taken into account and it’s up to you to supply evidence to prove your application. You might find this difficult if you don’t have any paperwork. Each Director would receive agreed drawings. A child support assessment is based on the paying parents earnings but if you have information that he actually received more than his declared drawings this is where an admin review can be used to have his capacity to earn taken into account, not just his drawings

    2. So it turns out I am supposed to have been paid child support for the last 6 years. I have only been getting paid it for the last year in dribs n drabs and it’s always changing n is never much although the father earns alot of money. Ird are never any help with this, they say I have to file for an administration review as they can’t help me. But this is their stuff up. The father was always paying them the child support, it just wasn’t coming to me as I was o. The dpb back then. But 6 yrs ago it changed and I was then owed the child support but never received any until last year when I rung and had a investigation done to get it. Now they admit yes I am owed the last 6 years worth of child support and yes its all there on the computer screen infront of them but they can’t help me, I will have to do a administration review. Why should I have to do that when this is their stuff up? Not to mention the father is now a very bad guy I have protection orders against him to protect my child and I and if I do a admin review yes he will owe me thousands but it wouldn’t be worth my life to do it as there will be repercussions. I really need help with this

  15. I have 50/50 shared custody of my children (three). My ex has been claiming 0$ inine for three years now to try to maximize on the amount I have to pay (keeping delta between my paid job and her earnings as large as possible). She has three main jobs, mostly cash-in-hand, and therefore evades any type of taxation. Therefore, I carry 100% of all child support. What can I do to get this issue resolved? My financial burden wouldn’t be as high as it is if she were contributing her fair share. I’ve spoken to IRD and they’ve done nothing. No administrative reviews, no audits. This seems very lopsided and unfair. The additional money taken from me, is money I should be spending on my children while they’re in my care. Additionally, I’m paying the majority of school fees & extracurricular activities. Is there any advice on how to resolve this?

  16. Hi,
    Is it possible have a legally binding contract between myself and my son’s father to revoke my entitlement to child support? Ten years ago a declaration of paternity was issued by the court (for Work and income) I never updated the birth certificate or applied for child support as I don’t want it. But I would like to establish paternity as my sons 12 now but I feel his father won’t as he is worried about IRD. Thanks

  17. Please help me with my situation. I’m from Ukraine but NZ resident, my husband is from NZ. Baby was born in NZ. When baby was 5 months hb sent us back to Ukraine and gave $1000. At the same time he found job in other country with salary $20000 (before he was jobless). I was in Ukraine with baby 6 months and then moved to my hb. But our relationship is not good and he wants to send me back home again. Can I apply for child support and how much would I get? Baby is 16 months now. Can I also apply for the months we were not together and I took care of baby alone? Thank you very much.

  18. Hi

    So I have moved in with my new partner and I have 3 children to an ex. Me & new partner are expecting our new baby in July . New partner has one child to an ex whom he has been doin private arrangements with but not through IRD. His name is not on birth cert and we are wondering if new partner decides to go through IRD and make child support payments for his child with ex will that be dependant on our new household now since new partner is no longer single and living alone???

    1. Hi Reezi,
      If your new partner isn’t named on his child’s birth certificate he can’t be made liable to pay child support through IRD unless the Family Court declares him to be the father.

  19. Hello there,
    First time to post. I am a new Child Support receiver from this month. But I was told by my ex that he may lose his job and may not be able to pay Child Support. Normally he exaggerates everything so I am not too worried at this stage. But what if it is true, what is gonna happen to my payment?
    Has anyone experienced same situation?

    Thanks in advance.

    1. IRD will pay on his behalf and he will be billed to pay in arrears when he gets a new job or starts to recieve income from elsewhere

    2. Hi Miz
      Your ex will be assessed based on his income from last year if he works for wages (2 years back if he files tax returns). He can estimate to reduce his assessment if he loses his job but you could then apply for an admin review to change that.
      IRD can only pay you if they’ve received the funds from the paying parent first, this is if you’re not receiving a govt benefit.
      If you’re receiving a benefit you’ll receive anything your ex pays that’s more than what you’ve received by benefit in a month.

  20. hi i have a question.

    i made an appliction for child support years ago (as a requirement from winz) when i signed on the sole parent support, it was sent to ird and i received a letter from them stating they would not charge the father without proof of being the parent.

    he is named on the birth cert as the father but they dont have a copy of this. so my question is… is he liable?? will he be slapped with a huge bill?? will he be charged for all those years ago??? if i send the certs now will he get a big bill and be in debt???

    1. He is liable. But. . . he can claim that he didn’t recieve any notification at any time between your application and now, therefore wouldn’t need to pay for the ‘missed’ time with a huge bill. But will surely have to start payments when IRD catch up with him.

    2. Hi jp rose,
      IRD will only hold an application if proof of paternity has not been established at the time the application was received.
      As you have the father named on the child’s birth certificate but didn’t supply it when you completed the application it’s unlikely any liability would be backdated to the first application. You’d have to complete a new application and the liability would start from the date the new application was received by IRD

  21. We pay child support. The other parent refuses to pay half of the costs of orthodontic care that the child needs. Can we apply to the family court to get the child support payments to be used to pay for her share of the orthodontic treatment?

    1. Hi Sarah,
      If you want help with paying orthodontic expenses you should first apply for an administrative review under Ground 6. Once you have an admin review decision in place you can take the issue to the Family Court if you’re not happy with the admin review decision.

  22. If I am the father of a child but legal guardianship was taken away from me through the courts do I legally still have to pay child support?

  23. Hi I had a son at 16 yrs he is 4 1/2 now, I refused termination as I couldn’t do it, although knowing I would be a single parent. His father is not named on the Brith certificate and he doesn’t pay anything towards child support and has never meet his son. After this time gone he is now wanting to be in his sons life. Does he have to pay any child support? Or am I able to revive any help from him now that he is wanting to be in his sons life?

    1. Unless his name is on the birth cert or he has been declared to be the child’s father by the Family Court he has no liability to pay child support. The only way a liability could be backdated is if you had previously lodged a child support application with IRD who held it pending proof of paternity. You could ask the Court to make an order that he pay from birth but without any written agreement signed by both of you it’s unlikely you’d be successful.

    2. The only way you are free from paying child support is if you legally allow the child to be adopted by someone else. Just because your guardianship has been removed doesn’t mean you don’t have to pay

  24. Hi. My ex has our boys one night a week and Saturday during the day. I’m looking at claiming child support through ird but am a bit confused about working out the time spent with the children. The ex has a full time job monday to friday but also has a second income from a band that he is in(not regular gigs though). He is saying that because he also works nights he cannot have them at nights at the weekends but my understanding is that ird only works out nights spent with the parent not days. Would his case be a special case as he sometimes works night shifts in his second job.
    thanks in advanced for your help.

    1. If the nights formula isn’t fair IRD can use days as well. However, he would have to have the children at least 2 nights every week to meet the criteria to have recognised care put in place at the lowest percentage. If he doesn’t meet the 104 night criteria it doesn’t matter when he has them your child support won’t change.

  25. Hi, my partner has a child he pays child support for and we heard that if we have children of our own his child support would decrease somewhat because he will have other dependant children. Is this correct?

    1. Yes, if he has another biological child he will be allocated a dependent child allowance as well as the general ‘living’ allowance which will reduce his child support payments.

      1. My partner pays $850 a month for his son!! He lives ages away so only have him every second fri/sat night and she still says she has no money for petrol to do drop offs.
        When we had our daughter it went down by $18 a month!!!!!!
        How they can say one child costs $850 (technically more as the mother should have a contribution too) and our wee baby costs $18 is a bit of a joke. The system is messed up.

  26. Hey,
    My husband pays child support for two children, we get to see one every few weeks and have no contact with the other (not through want of trying). We hope to have our own children soon and would love for him to be a stay at home Dad so he can experience everything he missed with his first two. I’m happy to cover his child support payments as he won’t have income after we have children but wondered how much this would be approximately?
    We also hope to go overseas in a few years time, still with me as the breadwinner and him as the stay home parent. If he is not working can we just pay lump sums to IRD to make sure we are up to date with child support? How would you go about getting an income statement in a foreign country if he has no bank account there? We also hope to have enough money to fly the child we do get to see to visit us once or twice a year but money will be tight.
    I know these are pretty out there questions but if anyone has any advice or experience they can share I’d really appreciate it.

    1. If he gave up his job he could end up with an admin review based on his capacity to earn and end up assessed at the same amount hi was while earning. The premise is that the primary responsibility is the financial upkeep of the children and they would be the ones to suffer if his child support payments reduced.
      You can transfer money from overseas to IRD using Orbit Remit, I understand payments to IRD can be made without charge.

  27. Hi there. My husband and I are planning on starting our own business. He is currently in full time employment and we share 50/50 care of his kids with his childrens mother.

    Because our business will be in the ‘start up’ phase the business will pay him a salary (‘market’ but on the low end of the spectrum) and the balance of funds would be reinvested in the business. My question is, will child support for the coming year be calculated on his income for the year ending 31 March 2018 or can we apply for a reassessment once we launch based on his new income?

    We still anticipate paying child support and it would seem unfair if we had to pay based on a year where there was more income coming in – especially given we have 50/50 care. I’ve read conflicting information online so unsure what happens in practice. We’ve been running our numbers and obviously our projections have to change (jobs booked etc) depending on his CS liability. Thanks in advance.

  28. My ex is on the unemployment benefit looking for work and living with family rent free while I look after our son 24/7 and pay full daycare. Am I entitled to any of his benefit? If so how much roughly and how do I do this?

    1. No, you are not entitled to any of his benefit. Child support should be taken from his benefit and paid to ird. If he’s on a benefit it will be the minimum amount which is $70 something a month. Providing he doesn’t have any other children, as that amount is divided between all dependants.

  29. Hi There,

    Has anyone ever applied for a administrative review based on ground 3. ( applying for a reduction based on paying back a debt that was accumulated in the Relationship.) We have been separated for 3 years and I’ve only just found that this was an option, I’m currently paying back a 20k loan that was debt accumulated together. How successful has anyone been in applying for a review based on ground 3? My income has reduced significantly this year, I also support my partner and we have our own baby on the way. My current assessment is based on income from the previous financial year and it is quite a hefty amount there is no way I can afford to pay this amount this year based on my income. I have also been through court just to get regular contact with my children.

  30. my ex partner and i have a split 50/50 child care of our daughter neither of us has to pay child support because of our wages but the ex refuses to pay for half the other costs eg swimming lessons /day care / ballet et. what am i intitled to do about this

  31. 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?

  32. 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.

  33. 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

  34. 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)

  35. 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

  36. 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.



  37. 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.

  38. 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

  39. 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.

  40. 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

  41. 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?

  42. 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 ?

    1. Did you end up getting the money? I have this happening now… I believe I’m entitled to outstanding money. Online it says it’s been paid to the crown

  43. 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

  44. 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 ??

  45. 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).

  46. 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.

  47. 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

  48. 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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