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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 11551
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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I was told by Child maintenance that as I am a company

Customer Question

I was told by Child maintenance that as I am a company director and as such Im paid in dividends. When my ex partner contacted them I disclosed this and was told these did not come into effect it was only my salary that was listed as under £10,000 by my accountant. Im now told by the Child Maintenance Services that my ex has applied for a variation and I am due to pay her payments based on dividends also. I told them That I disclosed this to the girl I first spoke to at CMS and remembered them that the calls are recorded as advertised when you call them. I need advice as to where to go next. As she has cost me over £7200 in lawyers fees already
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Scots Law
Expert:  JGM replied 1 year ago.

You may have a right of appeal but I'm not sure why you think that salary and dividends would be treated separately for child maintnance purposes because they aren't. Can you explain your situation a little more.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I was told by the CMS when I first contacted them! I was paying my ex £110 per week since we split up . It was her who contacted them. I was told dividends don't come into calculations for payments! I've since asked for them to provide me with a recording of the call. As this is their mistake and not mine. I have been completely honest since my ex involved them. It was the CMS who instructed me to adjust the payments. They are now saying I'm liable if there are arrears. My response to that was it wasn't my mistake it was the CMS . I can prove I was paying her £110 per week for months!
Expert:  JGM replied 1 year ago.

The rule is that gross income less pension contributions is taken into account. The way the law has been framed presently is that dividend income doesn't have to be put into the calculation but the recipient parent can apply to the CMS for a variation of the calculation so that dividend income is included and from your narrative that is what has happened here. Frankly the rules don't make a lot of sense as most company directors take their income at least partly by way of dividend so why the CMS standard formula doesn't account for this is less than logical. The other sting in the tail is that if you don't reach an agreement and the payments are made via CMS, you will be charges an extra 20% in charges and your wife will pay 4% in charges.