IRD’s Own Household Expenditure Guide Makes Mockery of Child Support Living Allowance

AD164 Guide

To have people believe in you as an organisation you need to do two things:

First, you should be consistent in your approach across different areas. People feel unfairly treated if they can’t understand how things that affect them, are worked out.

Second, own up to your mistakes. If something is clearly wrong you will get a lot more respect by admitting it rather than trying to explain it away with gobbledygook.

Here’s what we are talking about:

When determining the living expenses for a child support paying parent, one has to wonder where IRD got their figures from?

The general living expense allowed is $17,687 a year (gross before tax) for a paying parent, no matter where they live or whether or not they are supporting a partner.

What we stumbled across:

A member of our community directed us to a current guide, published by IRD that points towards a massive disparity between a) what IRD state are general living costs, and b) what IRD allow for living costs.

What is the purpose of the household expenditure guide?:

This guide provides information on some of the categories of living costs that are generally incurred by New Zealand households. It provides a base to use as a first step in determining whether household expenses have been reported correctly and therefore determine any ability to repay debt.

Our understanding is that the costs in this guide, published by IRD, are indicative of the living costs generally incurred by NZ households.

This guide is part of the Government’s responsible lending code.

It gets worse:

Lets do a quick comparison of the living allowance for child support paying parents, as calculated by IRD, and what IRD state are the living costs generally incurred by NZ households, broken down by region.

Living costs, according to the IRD guide, for a single person household (in yearly $$):

Rural: $29,593.20
Auckland: $39,936
Waikato & BOP: $31,304
Wellington: $36,738
Rest of NI: $32,728.8
SI Urban: $29,827.20

Compare this to the living allowance given to parents that pay child support: $17,687.00 (Gross)

What? Less than half in some cases?

It is no wonder people are complaining! The living allowance given for a paying parent in Auckland is just over $17k a year, and IRD’s own study of general living costs (nothing fancy) is almost 40K a year.
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How then, have IRD worked out the child support formula living allowance?

When we asked this question recently on our Facebook page, IRD themselves advised us how it was calculated:

Thanks for your questions. We do appreciate that every families’ costs and circumstances are different.

Under the new rules, the living allowance recognises the living cost parents have to financially support themselves. It is what the government considers is the minimum level of income necessary to cover a parent’s own living costs, before child support is assessed.

It is income that is not considered when making a child support assessment.

If the parent also has other dependent children of their own living with them, they will be entitled to a separate dependent child allowance. Dependent child allowances are also taken off the parent’s income before child support is assessed.

For a parent who earns more than the living allowance and dependent child allowance, they will still have income over and above their child support payment available to support themselves.

The living allowance for a parent is the same amount as either the sole parent support or supported living payment benefit.

As with the benefit, it is not broken down into amounts for different types of expenses.

They also state that it is the same as the sole parent support benefit. However this is not correct as on a sole parent benefit you can also apply for an accommodation supplement that varies depending on where you live. There is also additional assistance available for childcare expenses.

IRD also made the following statement in answer to a similar question:

The living allowance recognises the cost a parent has to support themselves.

How exactly does it recognize the cost when IRD’s own guide states the cost is far, far more?
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Why are IRD not accountable for providing a detailed breakdown of the living allowance?

How can they just say it is the same as the sole parent support benefit when it is clearly not?

Recently we were told that IRD are trying to “align” with Australia.

Did you ever wonder what the living allowance is over the ditch?

Another eye opener:

The living allowance in Australia is $23,610 a year in Australian dollars, which today is $26,563.82 New Zealand Dollars.

Child support paying parents in Australia, the system that IRD is trying to align us with, get a 50.85 % higher living allowance.
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Not 2%, not 5% but more than 50%!

australian living allowance

IRD need to decide which of the following statements are correct:

1./ The current living allowance of $17,687 a year is a ridiculously low amount and by no means reflective of today’s high living costs (in which case some paying parents, that are not on high incomes are being forced into critical financial situations where they simply can not make ends meet).

2./ The IRD Guide AD164 is grossly over inflated, not an accurate reflection of actual average living costs and should therefore not be used as part of the responsible lending code.

Do you think the living allowance is fair?

Could you, as an adult (who more than likely has to look after kids for a portion of the week as well as yourself), live on 17k a year regardless of where in NZ you lived? We realize of course that some may earn enough above and beyond the living allowance and will have extra money available, however a lot of us do not, and are therefore really struggling.

We will continue to highlight obvious flaws in the new child support formula as and when we find them.

Please join us on our Facebook page and share this article with your friends and family.

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Items Used In The Basket Of Goods Referred To In The Costs Of Raising Children Study

Basket of Goods

As many of you may have read the 2010 Costs of Raising Children Study ( used as a guideline by IRD in the recently introduced child support formula ) has two approaches.

The first approach uses Statistics New Zealand’s Household Economic Survey (HES) data to estimate what parents actually spend on raising their children at different levels of household income.

The other approach is the basket of goods approach, the key part being..

..Using retail prices from the Consumers Price Index (CPD, a basket of goods and services considered appropriate for a given living standard is priced.

We wanted to find out what exactly was in the basket of goods, that was included as part of this study. This is important, because from what we have been lead to believe, this is related to the amount of child support parents pay.

Under the Official Information Act (1992) one of our community requested this information, initially from IRD.

IRD then directed the question to Statistics NZ.

A letter of reply has been received from Statistics NZ which states that the study selected approximately 500 goods from the larger list of goods that the Consumer Price Index is calculated from.

You can read that larger list (the CPI) here.

The letter goes on to say…

Statistics NZ does not hold the exact list of goods that was used by the study’s authors to estimate the costs of raising children.

It then talks about the goods used in an Australian study, which we can only hope is nothing to do with our cost estimates.

Here is the letter, so you can see for yourself.

the list

Statistics NZ doesn’t have the list, and the IRD also couldn’t provide the list.

IRD have been less than helpful in supplying information. It should be at their finger tips and readily available to the public of New Zealand.

A number of mistakes are starting to accumulate:

What do you think about this? Is this not a straightforward request?

As a group we are now planning to prepare a document that will be sent to the Office of the Ombudsman as we do not feel that we are getting reasonable answers to our questions.

You have the right, by way of complaint to the Office of the Ombudsman under section 28(3) of the Act, to seek an investigation and review of this response to your request.

If you also have questions you feel are left unanswered, please share in the comments and we can look at including them as well.

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Question Replies From Hon Todd McClay

buzz from the beehive

On the 15th May one of our community put forward 3 important questions to Hon Todd McClay. The information was requested under the Official Information Act (1982).

These are the replies that have been received back.

1.8.1 Provide what the true cost is to raise a child in New Zealand that the government and IRD have used and refer to in this bill, not the income based % cost model.

QuestionsFromToddMcClay

This answer doesn’t really leave us any the wiser than when we started however this part is interesting….

..the desire to align the child support system with that of Australia

Links mentioned in the article

Supporting Children
Costs of raising children – ( Once on the parliament page you need to click on the link on the right that says full advice text )
Child expenditure table

1.8.2 Justification on how the cost to raise similar children in a blended family can vary so much if the calculations are in fact based on the cost to raise children in New Zealand.

QuestionsFromToddMcClay2

Many of our case studies have highlighted the fact that children appear to be worth significantly different amounts, even when living under the same roof.

The reply points again to this study.

This is not anything new.

1.8.3 The list of the 700 goods and services Statistics New Zealand reviewed to evaluate the cost to raise children in New Zealand.

This one has been referred to the NZ department of statistics, apparently they have this information and we will update you all when we receive it.

For those of us that hoped to get some meaningful answers to these questions, it has left us feeling very deflated.

From here the next step, should we wish to keep heading down this path, is onto the Ombudsman to investigate and review.

What do you think of the answers given? Do we as New Zealand tax payers deserve a better explanation than what has been given?

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Unfair When I Already Contribute 60% of Care and Pay for Most of the Extras – Case 140

Case 140

This is case study number 140

This is Belinda’s Story:

Belinda – Tell us about what is going on with your situation?

Separated 7 yrs ago and have been main caregiver and financial provider for three children over this time as the ex husband stopped paying c/s 2009 claiming he was made redundant.

He remarried and set up a limited company with his new wife 50% shareholder and director .

He is self employed builder. Has claimed since then his income is only 18-20,000 annually!

I had to refresh nursing qualifications and started off on the DPB and now have slowly increased my income.

Since 2013/2014 we have shared care in place with me 60% of care.

I am now in the position of being responsible for 100% of c/s and have to pay him!

How does this work? He is working continuously and lives in a household where the combined income would be much higher than my income alone.

I have paid for 90% of any extras required ie after school activities, hair cuts, school fees, etc etc.

He continually refuses to contribute. It feels to me I am being punished for getting back on my feet, being a responsible parent, being on the PAYE system and not being married.

Totally unfair.

Do the government not realise how much they have paid out to support my family in the earlier years when the father was perfectly capable of paying? What a joke.

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How much did you pay on the old formula?

$110

On the NEW formula what will that amount be per month?

$240

Are you happy with the new formula?

No

What are your main reasons for being not happy with it?

Unfair when I already contribute 60% of care and pay for most of the extras that I now have to give him money because his is able to lie about his income level.

Makes me want to cry!

It gives me no incentive to earn more.

I know he will be laughing his head off about it. He does not need my money and it will be seen as a way of hurting me not as money to be used on the children.

If child support was a set amount per child split between both parents for the basic necessities, what do you think is a fair amount per month per child?

$400

What else would you like to say?

Its incredibly unfair that one parent can just choose to opt out if he has a partner.

The best interests of the child are not taken into account by some parents.

I am dumbfounded that i now have to ‘fight’ with the IRD to prove my ex-husbands fraudulent behaviour and the affect it has on my financial circumstances.

All I want to do is get on with my life not waste it on filling out forms and gathering information.

Commonsense would tell you that I should not have to pay a cent out when I am more than contributing to the welfare of my children.

Belinda – Thanks for sharing with us.

We want to hear your story!

If you would be happy to share your story with our community – we would love to hear it. Please fill out our Case Study submission.

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Disclaimer: Testimonials, case studies, and claims made at childsupportnz.com are unverified results that have been forwarded to us by users or told to us by clients, and may not reflect the typical person’s experience, and may not apply to the average person.

How is One Child Worth More Than Another?

Worth of a Child

Many of our community have struggled to understand the way the child support formula, implemented by the NZ government, values one child differently from another.

What do we mean by that? Let us show you some real life examples.

At a recent Q & A with IRD, held on our Facebook page a number of questions were raised in relation to the differing values of children.

Stella asked:

Q: How is it worked out that a child living in the home that the child support is based is considered to have considerably less financial needs than the child now living in the ex partners home?

Lisa had this question:

Q: Why is one child worth more than another just because a parent earns more? All children should be the same whether a paying parent earns $20k or $200k. My three children receive $900 per month from there father and I still think this is too much. I am arranging a private arrangement or else their Dad will never be able to afford to his boys let alone have them every fortnight. But why should my partner who also has three children be paying $1700 per month. Why the difference? Why do some families only receive $75 when another receives $800 for the same amount of children. Are you trying to make paying families worse off and struggling to pay their bills?

Paulette asks:

Q: I would like to know why dependent children aren’t worked out the same as the non-dependent children and after tax is taken off dependent children receive less than the non- dependent children that you are meant to contribute to not 100% pay for? Bit strange that children that live in your care full time cost less than a child that is supported by two parents incomes receiving child support?

The answer from IRD, in relation to the above questions was:

The cost of raising a child for a parent will be different for each parent based on their circumstances.

Research in New Zealand and elsewhere found, that the cost of raising a child is based on the amount of income the parents earn; and it increases as parent’s income increases. These costs can be translated to a percentage of a parent’s income.

For example, the cost of raising one child under 13 for parents earning the average weekly wage was found to be about 15% of their income.

The child support formula therefore uses a percentage of income in different scenarios. This is set out in the child expenditure tables in the legislation and on IR’s website at www.ird.govt.nz/childsupport/assessment/assess/expenditure/

These percentages change as income changes, and depend on the number of children and whether they are under or over 13 years old.

The income we use in the expenditure tables is updated each year based on average weekly earnings from Statistics NZ. It provides a more accurate way to determine the cost of a child to a parent than under the old child support formula.

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What they are saying appears to make sense on the face of it, but unfortunately what has happened is that children have ended up being valued differently.

Some parents only get the minimum child support amount of $74 a month, or even less.

Disturbingly, a number of parents get absolutely nothing at all.

Other parents receive (or pay) 20 times the minimum, or more, per child.

E.g Jonathan pays $1587 for one child per month:

You guy’s were surprised at the last total in the submission I put in. I received a letter the other day as my daughter is turning 13 this month… $1587/month now for one child. That is the better part of $400/week. In what world does it cost even close to $400/week to raise a child?

Apryl receives $62.80 a month:

Now its gone down by $11.. $62.80 a month- thats $753.60 yr. Isnt the minimum $892.I rang IRD this morning and they said ‘That is calculated on his income and we cant discuss this further’

Surely these are two extremes of absurdity?

Look, we all know that our kids are invaluable and money shouldn’t come into it.. but how can anyone seriously convince us of the fairness of a formula that determines that one child costs nearly $400 a week, yet another costs only $15 a week?

To sum it up a different way Jonathan pays more in one month, than Apryl receives in two years!

What Can Be Done About All This Nonsense?

Here at Child Support NZ we are proponents of a flat rate child support system, that does not discriminate between Apryl’s children or Jonathan’s.

Each child, we believe, could have a reasonable standard of living on a sensible set amount per month that was shared between both the parents.

If one parent can’t pay the calculated amount, due to minimal income (or other reasons), then the Government could help top it up as they do now.

The millions of dollars spent on admin reviews, ridiculous expenditure on systems that don’t work and paying staff to try to explain a system, that they probably find hard to believe in themselves would no longer be necessary.

Simplify, start with shared care and no child support, and move to a flat rate from there.

IRD don’t agree with us, and nor does the government.

And why would they? Agreeing with us would be admitting that mistakes have been made. Very costly mistakes.

Read some of the headlines:

Tell us what you think

Is the current system fair? Tell us why (or why not)?

Do you believe a flat rate is a sensible idea or not? Shoot us a comment with the reasons why or why not.

Let’s not live a future where some children and parents are left penniless, and others forgotten about altogether.

If this current government is not going to work with us to sort it out, we need to make sure we make our votes count next election.

We need to get behind a party that is willing to tackle head on, these massive issues.

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I Really Hope They Re Look at The System – Case 139

Case 139

This is case study number 139

This is Emmy’s Story:

Emmy – Tell us about what is going on with your situation?

We are paying parents living in Aus, paying directly to IRD NZ.

My husband has one child in NZ – South Island. We have a younger child together.

Before we planned our baby, we decided it was best to save for x amount until had enough saved to cover bills for a minimum of 1 year to take the pressure off hubby etc.

It has been life saver!

Husband has never been allowed to see his child, unless the money was paid directly too her, which is impossible due to her being linked with winz.

Husband works 60 plus hours and I stay at home with our young child.

My husband’s x is receiving a pension/single parent so money goes straight to govt, which is fine.

People assume that we make huge money in aus and drive 50k plus cars and have these expensive homes with pools.

We dont!!! the cost of living here is extremely high, despite what you have heard. Yes petrol is cheap but that’s about it.

His child support has increased steadly over the years, which was fine due to reflection of his income BUT when the new system came into place it jumped by $400 a month.

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In the end it was either I go back to work, which I am not happy about as we saved for a very long time for me stay at home with the baby and being forced back into the work force makes me sad. or my husband is too go self employed, making as many tax deductions as possible to bring this income right down.

We are in the processes of my husband going out on his own. So sad that we felt this was the only way without struggling.

Him working 60 plus, plus me working 30 plus hours just didn’t make sense.

I really hope they re look at the system.

How much did you pay on the old formula?

$659

On the NEW formula what will that amount be per month?

$1100

Are you happy with the new formula?

No

What are your main reasons for being not happy with it?

Massive increase without warning. IRD have told us that it will keep increasing even if he only earns an extra $500.

If child support was a set amount per child split between both parents for the basic necessities, what do you think is a fair amount per month per child?

$500

What else would you like to say?

Husband did earn $1500 more last financial year, but the increase in child support is way too much for that amount.

Emmy – Thanks for sharing with us.

We want to hear your story!

If you would be happy to share your story with our community – we would love to hear it. Please fill out our Case Study submission.

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Disclaimer: Testimonials, case studies, and claims made at childsupportnz.com are unverified results that have been forwarded to us by users or told to us by clients, and may not reflect the typical person’s experience, and may not apply to the average person.

Why Do I Still Have To Pay Child Support When I Share The Care Of My Child 50/50?

Shared care 50 50

In a fair world if you had equal shared care of your children, with your ex-partner, you would reasonably expect that the cost of the children would also be shared.

But what if it wasn’t?

What if you, as the mother, or father of these children had to pay the other parent and/or the Inland Revenue Department thousands of dollars a year, yet you didn’t earn a big wage.. (and your ex partner hadn’t worked for years)?

How would you feel?

Of course you would never want tax payers to have to pay for your children. You would expect to pay your half while they were at your house, and the other parent in the equation should be paying for the other half of the basic expenses.

Changes to the child support formula came into effect from April 1st, 2015.

These changes are affecting NZ’ers that were already struggling to make ends meet.

It is taking money out of homes, and away from children and giving it to the other parent (who can spend the money on whatever they like).
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In some cases this might be the fair thing to do, but in many situations money is being taken away from the parents that were already the primary financial contributors to their kids.

Previously if your ex didn’t want to work, and wanted to cruise along in life that was their choice and it did not greatly affect the other parent.

When you have to pay your ex money to sit on their butt while you work like a dog it can be extremely hard to make sense of it all.

IRD’s answer to the question of why someone has to pay child support in a 50/50 care situation

Even when the care of a child is shared equally, child support is usually required to be paid by the parent with the higher income.

This is to ensure that the child’s standard of living remains relatively unchanged when moving from one parents care to the other and reflects the support they would receive if the parent’s and child all live together.

Parents who share care together can choose to have a private arrangement outside of Inland Revenue as long as the receiving carer is not on a sole parent benefit.

Note that answer also applied to some that have more than 50% custody! And still had to pay for the other parent.

Example of 50/50 Care Where One Parent Pays

In this simulated example which we have conjured up with the IRD magic calculator we have parent x and parent y. X earns 70K a year and y owns there own business, manages to write off most of their expenses via the business and declares a taxable income of 10k a year.

From our calculations on 2 kids that would then point to the fact that parent x has to pay parent y $621.80 per month. This is despite them spending one week at x’s house and the following week at y’s house.

child support 50/50

What Can Be Done About An Unfair Formula?

Of course if you believe the formula is unfair you can file an admin review, however from the feedback we have had to date, this is extremely difficult to succeed with unless you have “extraordinary circumstances”.

One of our community members, who has found herself in this horrendous situation has asked the following questions of the government:

  1. How is this fair?
  2. Why am I being penalised for working?
  3. How do my children benefit from this?
  4. How do you justify making me pay 90.02% of the child care costs when I only have my children 50% of the time? i.e. Why do I HAVE to pay for my ex-husband to look after his children?
  5. Why isn’t my ex-husband expected to work full time?

The problem is that the answers received to date just rehash how the formula is worked out and advise that if one considers it not fair then there is the option to do an admin review.

This does not help anyone understand why this is the way it is.

Surely with all the millions of dollars that have been spent, some kind of reasonable explanation should be forthcoming?
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We have essentially, it appears, copied a system similar to what Australia implemented in 1998.

When we look at Wikipedia for Australian child support it states as one of its criticisms:

For those where 50/50 shared care agreements are in place further issues have arisen often creating bitterness, fuelling arguments and generally breaking down goodwill between the parents. An example where both parents are gainfully employed yet one parent has to pay the other parent a percentage of their income.

Many consider this unfair as one parent is simply collecting money from the other when they are more than capable of paying their own share. The argument being that if both parents share care and both parent pay 50% of all shared costs why would one parent have to provide the other parent with more money?

The CSA don’t appear to have a specific clear response to this. Responses have ranged from “it’s a little top up for the kids” to “it’s just the rules of the system”. Critics of this particular aspect of the system argue it should be on a case by case basis yet response from CSA representative has been that it’s too much micromanagement.

The Wikipedia article is a little short on references, but hopefully you get the idea.

Why did we not learn from the mistakes of our tran-tasman colleagues?

If you were in charge of implementing a new system worth 163 million dollars, would you not look at any current concerns and try to address them as part of the implementation?

What Should Happen in a 50/50 child support situation?

We believe that each parent is equally responsible for the upbringing of their child.

The starting point should be no money changes hands, and expenses should be shared.

If one party earns substantially more than the other, they can agree to pay more of the expenses.

This solution offers the following benefits:

  • There is more incentive for both parties to work hard and earn money. (the current method, could be perceived as discouraging both parties)
  • IRD does not need to even be involved saving the country money spent on time, and administration
  • There will be less bitterness and aggravation between parents, with both parties being made responsible for the support of the children they brought into this world
  • Laziness and/or hiding behind accountants will not be a financially rewarding career option

Please share what is happening, a lot of people don’t understand how unfair this new formula is.

We want both parents to take responsibility for their children. Not just one of them!

Come and join us on Facebook.

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How Is The Living Allowance Calculated? What The IRD Told Us

living allowance

In May 2015, a team from the Inland Revenue Department approached us and asked if they could come onto our Facebook page and answer questions around the recent changes to child support in NZ.

We agreed, a little hesitantly as we had no idea of what the response would be, but we figured that the more that people are talking about the issues, the better.

The response from our community was overwhelming.

In one of the recent changes, effective from April 1st, 2015, the living allowance underwent a massive restructure that has directly impacted on a large number of families.

Some of the questions IRD received, on our page, were regarding that living allowance…

Karen asked:

I want to know how many of these people who have made the price of ‘living allowance’ could actually live on that amount (even when you have up to 7 kids at once in your house)? How is the living allowance calculated? Less than $350 per week, for rent, food, power, petrol, clothes, water, then when you have kids, bigger house, more petrol to pick them up, more food, more water, supplies for them(clothes, fun, hygiene stuff). How can ANY person provide all that on LESS than $350 per week?

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Michelle also asked about the living allowance:

I would like the living allowance to be broken down. How much is allowed for rent, food, power etc where do you get your figures from? In our circumstances I’ve been made redundant from my job so my husband’s wages supports a total of 5 in our household. My ex husband has never been consistent in paying his $74 per month for our 3 children. My ex husband is a contractor who drives around in a 25,000 truck has a jetski and motorbikes and makes stainless steel lamps on the side and gets away with all this. My husband pays $160 per week child support for his 18 year old daughter. This new formula is slowly sinking us in a big black hole.

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IRD’s answer:

Thanks for your questions. We do appreciate that every families costs and circumstances are different.

Under the new rules, the living allowance recognizes the living cost the parents have to financially support themselves. It is what the government considers is the minimum level of income necessary to cover a parents own living costs, before child support is assessed. It is income that is not considered when making a child support assessment.

If the parent also has other dependent children of their own living with them, they will be entitled to a separate dependent child allowance. Dependent child allowances are also taken off the parents income before child support is assessed.

For a parent who earns more than the living allowance and the dependent child allowance, they will still have income over and above their child support payment available to support themselves.

The living allowance for a parent is the same amount as either the sole parent support, or supported living payment benefit. As with the benefit it is not broken down into different amounts for the different types of expenses.

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Thanks for the answer IRD, however there are a number of areas of concern that remain:

  1. The answer given is somewhat confusing, firstly it mentions that they appreciate that everyone’s costs are different (yet the living allowance is one set amount), then it goes on to say that it is the minimum level of income necessary to cover a parents own living costs. There is however, no break down or justification of these costs.
  2. Why is it just a flat rate i.e one size fits all, yet IRD constantly states that the reason child support is based as a percentage of income is because “One size doesn’t fit all”. Surely either one size fits all, or one size doesn’t fit all?

    Ref IRD website-Rather than being a one size fits all, from 1 April 2015 a new formula includes both parents’ incomes and circumstances, and recognises a wider range of care. So the amount of child support some parents pay or receive may change

  3. When you go for an admin review to try to get an increase on living allowance, why do you have to justify how you spend every cent, yet the receiving parent doesn’t need to state how they spend the child support money or even need to submit their expenses?
  4. It’s not quite the same as the sole parent support benefit, as that particular benefit offers additional amounts of help including an accommodation supplement (which appears to be related to where you live interestingly, yes cost of living is different in different towns).
    living allowance

Over the next few weeks we intend on breaking down the answers given, we want you to share with us what you think.

This problem is not going away and we all need to unite together to highlight the inadequacies of the new formula.

Come and join the conversation.

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Incomes Should Not be a Factor – Case 138

ann case 138

This is case study number 138

This is Ann’s Story:

Ann – Tell us about what is going on with your situation?

My husband has shared care of 3 children to his ex which we both care for 39% of the time.

Under the old system because we are 3 days short of 40% shared care wasn’t considered and we paid full child support.

Now under the new system the days are counted yet we pay more because she earns nothing according to IRD.

We understand that the children need to be cared for but all 3 children are at school and she could work but chooses to have more children.

We are being penalised for her life choices and choosing not to work. We have a child together yet he is worth less the children out of home.

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How much did you pay on the old formula?

$495

On the NEW formula what will that amount be per month?

$595

Are you happy with the new formula?

No

What are your main reasons for being not happy with it?

Incomes should not be a factor.

Or if they do it should be the household income not just the parents as step parents factor into hold house income.

Again with the kids being at school it has been her choice to have more children and not to work yet as paying parents we have to pay for that choice.

Under the new system we would have to have the kids 75% of the time before we didn’t have to pay anything.

If child support was a set amount per child split between both parents for the basic necessities, what do you think is a fair amount per month per child?

At the moment $50 per week per child would cover their needs not her lifestyle.

What else would you like to say?

Everyone has different opinions to what is important to raise a child and therefore money amounts is going to differ person to person.

IRD does comes across very one sided and they don’t realise that we have had to fight every inch of the way to get the kids for the time we have them.

Ann – Thanks for sharing with us.

We want to hear your story!

If you would be happy to share your story with our community – we would love to hear it. Please fill out our Case Study submission.

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Disclaimer: Testimonials, case studies, and claims made at childsupportnz.com are unverified results that have been forwarded to us by users or told to us by clients, and may not reflect the typical person’s experience, and may not apply to the average person.

I Wish I Had Someone That Would Understand my Situation – Case 137

simon case 137

This is case study number 137

This is Simon’s Story:

Simon – Tell us about what is going on with your situation?

I have two kids daughter 13 boy is 16.

As ex sufferers from postnatal depression I tried to help her out an get help which ended up turned against me.

As my kids were too young to understand my reasons, at this time for leaving, I stayed 8 yrs putting up with antisocial behavior, emotional stress, and abuse mentally and emotionally until I left.

Everything was spit up 50/50 even my work super.

I’ve paid a set amount (private agreement ) word of mouth good will..

I paid half of kids needs over an above.

Now I’ve had IRD put upon me by ex.

And it is as stressful and tiring as my last 8 years of marriage.

I left kids with ex as her mental state having someone there an keeping her mind busy helped her lose her thoughts of self harm as she had spoken of suicide to me.

It seems in IRD’s eyes I am just a number, a dollar value – and yet everyone has a reason.

My daughter is now being treated the same as I was punished, emotionally stressed an affectionately ignored (if talked to at all).

I’m now paying near double I was under old system. I am going to try for administrative review as I brought a 2brm house to live in and have kids, if ex allows, or have boy stay as hes been kicked out twice.

The new IRD system works on money and penalties.

Not for the best interest of kids, or Dads Who are trying to deal with a bigger picture.

Yet I have three ird envelopes turn up at once wanting money or similar.

I feel harassed, bullied, stressed I may have to sell my house to pay back pay on penalties I just got dropped on me by new system.

Trying to get IRD help so my kids have a safety net, a place they know they can come and be loved. And a dad can have his kids.

I have administrative review under way its slow going an penalties are growing.

If no joy I’m going family courts take on my kids full time if I can, give my job of 15 years away ,I’ll always be there for my kids.

I pick them up after school take them home.. take my daughter to soccer training 2 to 3 hours twice a week.

And there for them at drop of a hat.

Ird bills and penalties grows by month my wage doesn’t by 10% a month nor over 3yrs.

I’m near living on $100 a week just to pay gas, groceries a mortgage of 370 a week thanks to post quake Christchurch and 20% bank deposits for a house.

IRD require Near $300 a week including a min penalty payment.

I’ve been sent bills from ex $1000 for buying a bed over an above school fees clothes etc…my ird payments been put into a account to add to her house deposit even though she probably has nearly $150k.

.

..not only did I get 3 envelopes from IRD Friday, I got another Saturday threatening that they will be taking the money out of my bank account…

Shows there is no collective communication within IRD.

I been talking to several people on the call center each telling me what to do but yet the harassment letters keep coming.

What is going on??? Confused to say the least

How much did you pay on the old formula?

$670

On the NEW formula what will that amount be per month?

$1100

Are you happy with the new formula?

No

What are your main reasons for being not happy with it?

Not happy.

There’s time limits to talk to someone to get help.

They never have understanding of peoples situations..

Lack communication, mail is more like “bill” bullying.

And amounts unrealistic.

Things aren’t worked out together so there is understanding not stress an not having some sort of direction for getting help.

In my situation it isn’t easy..ex mental health against me as well as IRD.

I brought a house on 20% deposit to have the kids, and sold holidays to pay IRD which goes on my income.. which comes around to bite me …damn if do damned if I don’t.

If child support was a set amount per child split between both parents for the basic necessities, what do you think is a fair amount per month per child?

$600

What else would you like to say?

I wish I had someone that would understand my situation.

And help me get help some direction towards understanding the systems, and where and who can help me in my hard and stressful situation…

I’d appreciate it more than you know thanks.

Simon – Thanks for sharing with us.

We want to hear your story!

If you would be happy to share your story with our community – we would love to hear it. Please fill out our Case Study submission.

Image credit

Disclaimer: Testimonials, case studies, and claims made at childsupportnz.com are unverified results that have been forwarded to us by users or told to us by clients, and may not reflect the typical person’s experience, and may not apply to the average person.