fbpx

Tricks and tips on how to win your child maintenance case

Tricks and tips on how to win your child maintenance case

Tricks and tips on how to win your child maintenance case

Connect with Legal Group – Click here.

Advocate of the High Court of South Africa Family Law Legal
Advocate Muhammad Abduroaf – Advocate of the High Court of South Africa

Child maintenance legal issues might sound simple, compare to, for example, a criminal case of fraud. However, a child maintenance case could be much more complicated, challenging and exhausting. That, however, does not have to be the case. At least not always. Find out some of the tips and tricks provided by Advocate Muhammad Abduroaf, a family law expert with more than a decade of experience in family law, and child maintenance matters. Read on to find out some tips and tricks of the trade. Valuable advice is given on what to do through the maintenance court process.

Download your Child Maintenance Calculator, click here.

[maxbutton id=”2″ ]

Child Maintenance and Applications – How does it work?

The focus of this article is not to explain how child maintenance work, or how to apply for child maintenance. There are many articles written on that topic. But in short, parents must pay according to their means. So, if a child’s expense the month is R 60 (obviously this is a fictitious example) and the father earns R 500 a month and the mother R 250 a month, then if all else is equal, the father should contribute R 40 towards the minor child’s expenses, and the mother, R 20. Now that is the long and short of the matter.

However, other factors also play a role. They include the necessary expenses of each parent, which determines how much they should contribute, as well as what assets the parents own. For example, if a father earns R 100 a month, and the mother R R800 – 00, the father would pay the majority of the minor child’s expenses if he owns other assets worth R 100 000 – 00 and the mother none.

Purchase a Consultation with us from our Online Shop, by clicking here.

advice-child-maintenance-child-custody-divorceWhat are the challenges in child maintenance cases for parents?

Now we deal with the challenges. The child costs R 60 per month, but the parent who is supposed to pay maintenance, the father, in this case, is only willing to pay R 10 per month. This is what he says he can only afford and what he believes the minor child needs. He says that if he pays more, the mother would use the money for herself. But the facts as in the example above, the father earns R 500 a month and the mother, R 250. Therefore, the father should pay R 40 and not R 10 as he offers.

The challenge the mother now has is to prove that the father can afford to pay R 40 and not R 10 as he offers. The mother is worried, that should she go to the maintenance court for help, she would only get R 5 because that is what the father said he will pay should she go to court. What is our advice? Go to Court!

The Maintenance Court – What do they do?

If a parent does not pay reasonable child maintenance, the maintenance court can enforce compliance. This they would do through the Maintenance Court enquiry process. Once a maintenance order is made, it becomes a criminal offense not to adhere to it. The court may even issue a warrant attaching property, or salary.

The maintenance investigator at the Court

Each maintenance court has a maintenance investigator. What this investigator does is gather evidence in a maintenance court case. However, in practice, no one may tell you that there is a maintenance investigator who could assist you in your case. This could be because of the huge amount of maintenance cases that come through the doors of the court.

How does the maintenance court make a decision?

Now, this is where it becomes challenging. The maintenance court can only make an order against a parent if there is evidence that he or she can afford the maintenance claimed, and obviously, the amount claimed is fair. The problem in practice is, the mother alleges that the father can afford the child maintenance, but she has no concrete evidence to back it up. The father is also not forthcoming, and only shows evidence that he cannot afford the amount claimed. The mother knows that he can afford the required amount due to his standard of living and what she experienced while they lived together.

What tips are there for the mother in maintenance matters?

What follows is a list of things you can do, either yourself or through the maintenance court. However please note that the court won’t entertain your application for child maintenance should it be excessive. In other words, if you know the father cannot afford the amount claimed, or that you are intentionally claiming too much; then, in that case, you would be wasting your time. If you have a legal representative, you would be wasting money as well.

Purchase a Consultation with us from our Online Shop, by clicking here.

Maintenance Court Investigator

Insist that the maintenance court instruct the maintenance investigator to investigate the financial affairs of the other parent. This you should even more so insist on if the father does not even provide the court with a copy of his salary slip and outline of expenses.

The father’s employer

Ask the maintenance court to issue a subpoena against the father’s employer for the salary advice of the father. Also, request details of the father’s pension interest the father may have.

The father’s banking account

Obtain the father’s bank statements. Here you should ask the court to subpoena various banking institutions for bank statements of the father. Bank statements hold in them valuable information about the lifestyle of a person. You may find out that the father spends half his money on his cell phone or luxury clothing. You can use this information to show the court that the father can tighten his belt and spend more money on his child. What sometimes happens is, you may find additional income coming into the father’s banking account.

Father’s Credit Profile

Have the maintenance court obtain a credit profile of the father. From the profile, valuable information can be obtained. For example, where he last applied for credit, employment and residential details. If the father says he does not have money, but he applied for credit to purchase a new car, clearly there is money.

Social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest etc.)

These days, many people publish their lives on social media. If the father, in this case, keeps loading pictures and posts of how hadvice-child-maintenance-child-custody-divorcee lives the good life; that information may be used to show the maintenance court that the father lives a life different than what he wants the court and you to believe.

Many people also make use of LinkedIn accounts. On it, they provide updated employment details. This would be useful to show the court should the father say he is an admin clerk. but on LinkedIn tell the world he is a manager.

Property Search in maintenance matters

What may be useful, is to do a property search on the father. Here you would find out what property that person owns. For example, the father may rent a house, but own a house in a different province where he obtains rent. That house he could have inherited.

Other tips and tricks in child maintenance matters

Each case is different. What would work in one maintenance matter, won’t work in another. For example, if someone is self-employed, and only get paid with cash, the dynamics are different. There won’t be any bank statements or payslips. In such a case, you need to be creative. Maybe ask questions to clients of the father and find out what he does and charges. If you can obtain the names of people the father does business with; that would be very useful. You may provide that information to the maintenance court and the investigator could follow up on it. If the father sees that you are getting somewhere, he may decide to pay a fair amount.

Final words in child maintenance matters

Your maintenance case is largely dependent on you proving that your child needs the requested amount. If you do not have proof, or cannot prove it, even if you show that the father can afford it, the court won’t order him to pay it. The court would only order him to pay what is fair and proved. Therefore, always ensure that you keep proof of your income and expenses up to date and ready to provide it to court.

Download your Child Maintenance Calculator, click here.

Have a family Law appointment with us

We have an online appointments system which enables you to save valuable time and cut straight to the chase. There is, therefore, no need for you to visit our offices (unless it is best for you to do so, or is your most preferred option).
You may set up telephonic or video consultations should you wish to do so. You can, therefore, stay in the office or on the couch in the comfort of your own home when dealing with us. We are therefore physical, online, set-up and ready to meet with you. Make your appointment online for a consultation today.

If you find any of our articles, free resources and posts advice-child-maintenance-child-custody-divorceinteresting, or possibly useful to others, please like and share it on Social Media by clicking on the icons below. Should you require any other legal services and advice, not related to family law, visit Private Legal. Or click here for the details of Cape Town Advocate, Muhammad Abduroaf.

Purchase a Consultation with us from our Online Shop, by clicking here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please share. Someone in need may find it useful.

Related Post

34 thoughts on “Tricks and tips on how to win your child maintenance case

  1. Hi, if the mother uses money for her own personal expenses can I stop paying the money to the mother and buy food to be delivered to the child ? Is it right not to give the mother any cent but still support the child myself by paying the schools fees directly to the school, buying clothes for the child myself ?

    1. The courts usually order that the maintenance gets paid to the mother. She would know what the child needs at a specific time. If there is a court order, then you need to follow it. If there is no court order, then you and the mother needs to work out the issues and you need to support your child reasonably. Things like school fees that can be paid to the service provider can be paid directly unless there is a court order stating otherwise.

  2. Good day.

    I am a dad of 2year girl turning 3 in December. My wife decide to divorce me 2 weeks ago she move out of the house.
    She wants me to see my child only once a week and every 2 weekend. I am very involve with my child my hours very flexible. most of the things she knows today i teach her my wife work long hours 8 am till 5 pm only get back home about 6pm.

    We both are very good parents but my wife dont spend so much time with her child like i do.

    My Question is what my rites can i get more days of my child as dad ? Even tho my wife refuse to work something out.
    What legal acction can i take to see my child more then once a week if a dad can fight for it

  3. Hi . My question is if the father of my child left us to live with a married woman and I’m unemployed we don’t have a home I’m living with friends n family. I handed him maintenance papers yesterday. So if he goes to court and tells the court he has new bills to pay since he left me and he can’t afford to pay much towards my child and I. Alimony! When we were living together he didn’t have many accounts .He only had one account. What do I do in a case like this? It’s not fair . He left us to start a new life with this woman . Takes a loan and gets a new place and buys furniture but can’t give money for his child.so therefore I’m taking him to maintenance court.plz I need advise on what to say at court for my bby and I to get a decent maintenance from him.

    1. Good day
      The court has a legal obligation to ensure that you obtain fair and reasonable maintenance. They would have to look at all the facts of the matter. We advise that you ensure that you keep proof of all your and the child’s expenses and present it to court. As to the father’s new life, he would have to explain it, and the court would have to decide if he was being fare etc. In the end, the court would decide what is best for the child.

  4. I have a problem whereby my baby daddy was instructed to buy our son clothes for winter and December but before he does that I always have to go to court, can’t they make some sort of arrangement with his employer that he’s obligated into delivering?

  5. Hi, I’m enquire got on behalf of a close family. He is the father of the child. Due to the fact that when he impregnated his girlfriend, the girl’s parents were trying to make them get married and he didn’t want. So they opened a child maintenance court case, on the day he went and the grandmother is the one who showed up and the girl(mother of the child) did not so the court didn’t take any action. Throughout the years he has tried to pay the damages but they refused. Now the child is 6 years old and he wants to take the court route, how should he go about it. The mother’s child has since been married and has a child with her new husband.

    The grandparents(parents to the mother of the child) seem to be taking it personal because they wanted the two( my close family and their daughter) to be married and have refused for him to see the child ever since. How should we go about this situation because the child is growing up

  6. I’m a father and pay maintenance fee which I believe is not fair for me as I have other children and pay more on the 1 I pay maintenance on than the others. Which steps to take for it to be reduced.

  7. Hi I have twin boys turning 5.their father is maintaining them he has 2 other kids tha makes them 4,he pays 2000 for the twin I dont know about the others am unemployed I find far job opportunities my mom works far from home I have no one to leave them with and I cant afford a nanny.he is HR senior at premiers office .it is not enough but it is something.the only problem is he sometimes tells he is having strains and sends R1500 and this does not meet all the twins needs what can I do ?

    1. Good day
      We advise you to approach the Maintenance Court for an enquiry into the matter. The court would decide if based on all the fact what he is paying is enough.

  8. Hi I would like to know, if the mother isnt working and the father has been supporting child from birth with a fixed amount which court have him but now she’s threatening the father with the court for more than what his giving, she is in a relationship and says her boyfriend supports more than what the dads supports.. Can she go to court to get extra while she hasn’t worked for years

    1. Good day

      She has a right to go court. However, the court would decide on what is fair. The father would have to outline his income and expenses and the mother the same for her and the child. She must also explain why she is not working. At the end of the day, the court would decide what is fair and best for the child.

  9. I am a varsity student and so is my son’s father. I recently got a nanny to look after my child while I study . He gives me R1400 per month but sometimes he makes excuses that he doesn’t have the money .R800 goes to the nanny and R600 for child support,I tell him that it’s not enough but he just doesn’t care …what should I do

  10. I had a woman who was Pregnant and she was not sure until the baby was born and she told me is my baby but on the Child birth certificate,she gave the baby her family name and on the mothers side she filled her name but on fathers side she never fill anyone,and she demand child support,but i told him to go and fix child burth certificate on thr fathers side bcoz i cant support a child who i real dont have any prove if is my child although i cant afford to do DNA as is too expensive.what will happen to me as a father who im ready to suppport my child if the birth certificate will prove me as a father??what will happen if my baby mother send me to court with empty father details birth certificates?

  11. Kindly advise ..my husband has two kids from another lady ..the kids are currently living with us and hasn’t seen her for over 3 weeks ..she has sent a maintenance order against my husband even though he takes care of the children. Please advise on dealing with this situation. What evidence can be taken to court to prove kids are with us

  12. Good day

    iam in bit of a stressful situation I was traditionally married to the father of my son in December 2018 and moved in stayed together even before then we recently had a fight now in November 2019 and we I moved back home and he also moved out to stay at his desired place he hasn’t given me any money for child support or let alone buy the Childs needs he has him on medical aid and is currently paying R600 for that and I have to pay the nanny and buy the Childs things and now I couldn’t take him to day care because he said he wont maintain the child and that he needed his things back from where we were staying previously I did not stop him from getting his things and now he hasn’t done anything for the child ever since. please advise on how to deal with this

  13. I am looking for someone to draw up an agreement on maintenance with the father. He earns nearly double my earnings but expects me to pay half of everything. I am a Preschool teachers simply cannot afford that on my salary.
    I live in Durban. Please may you forward me a person to contact

  14. Can I still ask for child maintenance if we once agreed on doing an abortion then I informed him of the change of mind regarding keeping the baby

  15. Father of my child doesn’t wanna do anything. The child was staying with his family for 6 months and I went and fetch her but she didn’t have food nor pampers nor medication nor proper clothes. I told him to buy atleast clothes and food a child he said he doesn’t see a need to do that. Do I was wondering if I can get help with child support maintenance procedures.

  16. Don’t seem to find anything that protects an unmarried father from being exploited? Mother hardly ever worked in 7 years, married wealthy and can afford a rich lifestyle in USA and now demands more and more maintenance – also threatens contact with his child if he doesn’t pay. Father has more than generously contributed to maintenance since the child’s birth. Now they are in USA, father offered R4000 a month, and R2000 a month to savings for one flight a year to see his child. She has now gone legal to dispute maintenance.

  17. My son is 23 yrs, not employed, have 3 children, drop out of college. I still pay maintenance, why. How can I stop it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Call Now ButtonCall now