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Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34124
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
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I got divorced in 2001 and the maintenance order for my three

Customer Question

I got divorced in 2001 and the maintenance order for my three children was under the old arrangements. It states I am to pay until the children finish tertiary education. My eldest son, now 22, left his mother during his a levels , and lived with mainly my parents (as they were geographically close to his school). I have supported him through uni and my ex wife has contributed nothing for him.

My daughter, 20, is just starting a placement year before her last year at uni. She will live with her maternal grandmother as it's close to her place of work. I'm happy to support my daughter directly (I currently pay £6000 a year in maintenance for her) so my question is, does a placement year count as education or not?

My youngest son, 18, has been allowed to leave college early to start a job, providing he completes his coursework. Again, does this situation count as being in education or not?

I am happy to, and do, support the children (as I have done for my eldest son), but see little of the £12000 pa paid going to the children (apart from my daughters rent at uni).
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
is the Placement part of her University Course?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
It's not a compulsory part. It was up to her to find the placement, and if she didn't she would have carried on to year 3 straight away. In fact it's only this week she got the offer of a placement.

Her mum and step dad have said of her paying rent to her grand mother (board and lodgings) which in principle sounds reasonable, and I am happy to contribute to (as I paid for my eldest sons rent during his placement year, I want to be fair as possible to each child).

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Will she be paid during the placement at all?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes, £15,000 per annum.



This is taken from the letter offering her the placement (my daughter asked for my advice on the offer)



I am pleased to offer you a Temporary Placement with xxxx Ltd. This will take effect from Monday 23rd June 2014 terminating on 22nd June 2015. However, subject to agreement by both parties, we reserve the right to extend the period of employment on a weekly basis. On this date, you should report to Nico Frame.


This placement will be at xxxx Ltd head office and we would expect you to attend Monday to Thursday between the hours of 8.45am and 5.30pm and Friday 8.45am to 4.30pm. You will be given a 1 hour lunch break. Your holiday entitlement will be 20 working days plus bank holidays. You will, however, be expected to hold a minimum of three days for Christmas closure.


This opportunity for you to gain some work experience and in no way pertains to an offer of employment. You will be a member of staff and you will receive a re-numeration for this role of £15,000 over the twelve months period paid monthly, in lieu on the last working day of each calendar month.




Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
In that case you do not have to pay maintenance for this year as she is not in education - and you can make arrangements with her direct of you so wish.
With regard to your son you should pay until the end of the college term but can then stop.
I hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you.

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
You are welcome - I hope all goes well

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