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plclegal
plclegal, Barrister
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 6638
Experience:  Barrister at law
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I need some legal advice regarding a liability order for

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I need some legal advice regarding a liability order for child maintenance services.

Hello, my name is*****'m a barrister and will do my best to assist you today.

Please bear in mind as this is an email service and not live chat I may not respond immediately.

Can you please give me some more of the background here?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Have just finished paying a£4000 plus CSA bill in December through a debt collection company with a liability order! Once paid in full we have now had another saying they have 2 older ones outstanding - dating back to 2006.

OK. Is there a chance that this is correct? And have the CMS provided paperwork to support the additional older arrears amounts?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Nothing in regards ***** ***** but it was definitely never signed for (unlike the £4000 debt I just paid). They also never mentioned any of this when in court last February. Can they now chase me for an old liability which was with the CSA but has now been sold on to child maintenance? Also - they have said I’m unable to even query the amount as I know they have based this on estimation as for part of the dates it covers, I was unemployed claiming family benefits?

Did you notify the CSA that you were unemployed at the time?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
No, I was between homes so had no correspondence with them whatsoever.

OK.

The CSA can pass on old debts to the CMS for collection, and sometime they go back much further than the dates you are talking about.

Accounts fall into arrears if payments should be made and they are not - so if you were unemployed but did not notify the CSA, the account will have fallen into arrears as they will have expected you to continue to pay at the agreed rate.

Do you have documentation to prove that you were not in work at the time the liability arises from? How much are they now seeking?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I don’t have it and I’m not sure - maybe I could gather this information from the benefits department?
We paid them almost £4000 for the 2017 - 2018 period. We also paid around £5000 at the rate of £280 p/m during the 2016 - 2017 period.
I spoke with child maintenance and they state they want a further £8000 backdated to between 2006 and 2013 and that there is also a further £2000 outstanding in arrears once this has been paid.
I guess my sole question would be -
Can they now seek the old liability having taken me to court to sign a liability last February for only the £4000 we paid? Not once were these arrears mentioned, not where they agreed to or signed for?

In my view yes they can seek further liabilities, if the arrears amounts are correct I'm afraid.

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
despite the fact that I was not in touch with them for this period, am I able to query the amount and try to gain some proof of income years later?

You can challenge the amount if you can provide evidence that the calculation is wrong. You should have been in touch with them but you can still make a case to have the arrears written off if you can show that they should not have accrued.

Hello - I didn't hear from you.

Can I assist you further with your question?

If you have further questions, you can always come back to me.

In the meantime, if you could take a second to provide a 5 star rating (top right of your screen) I'll be credited for my time spent responding to your question.

Kind regards,

Peter

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