They may reduce while the children are away but they cant be turned off until the children return, thats not realistic. The NRP does of course have costs when the children stay with them but compared to the costs incurred by the RP they are marginal. I have direct experience of this.
I think so many other costs are not being considered here, clothing,shoes,clubs, presents, TV licence, council tax, car running costs etc etc. These are annual costs that don''t go down when children are not at home.
The deduction the CSA make for overnight stays is a compensatory factor to the NRP and the resident parents gets less maintenance as a result. Many resident parents are also restricted to hours of work due to child care, cut their benefit as well it will be the children who suffer.
Moi aussi. I have 2 of my own and 3 step-kids. Although we have never asked the kids mum to share her tax credits with us.
What I can definitely say is that it costs at least as much to care for the step-kids as during the week, probably more as the only time we see them (weekends and holidays) is when they require bags of entertainment. And of course they need clothing (having just kitted out my 7 yr old for around £100 for the next school year I''ve realised that at primary level uniform is bags cheaper than paying for the latest trends to kit kids out during free time). And of course, we are already contributing to what the kids wear at mums through our healthy maintenance payments.
Money is always tight when families split. But the question by the op was about the possibility of sharing ctc. The answer is yes, it is possible. And quite often it is the morally right thing to do too.
Yes maisy, many rp do find themselves with those costs. As do the nrp. And yes, work may be an issue. Which is why most PWC ( not all, I know) get the majority of assets to compensate them for this, and receive maintenance, which contributes to many of those items you listed.
Do you not agree then that tax credits are paid on the assumption that children live with their parent full time? And if the child is not there for a substantial chunk of time then the costs that raising a child incurs are being borne by someone else?
I think it is fair to say that both types of parents incur costs in looking after their children. It is unfortunate that there is very little in the way of assistance to NRP''s financially. Whilst I don''t want to play the game of ''Who is worst off'' (because the answer is obviously the children!) NRP''s do get a raw deal out of it.
Mostly Fictional Example: myself and my ex are both out of work. We both rent houses with a bedroom for the child. The child spends 5 days a week with my ex, the RP, and 2 days a week with me, the NRP. Ex receives the child benefit.
For housing, I receive £63 per week (actual housing cost £107 per week) while ex receives £103 per week.
I also have to pay £5 per week in maintenance.
The tax credits (~£60 per week) also go to the RP.
To buy clothes, bills and food which my ex won''t supply I have to pay for them out of job seekers allowance.
It really makes me cross when I read that NRP have no costs regarding the children.
My partner has a 3 bedhouse that sits empty 2/3 of the week. It cost the same as his ex wife house to run but of course as far as she is concerned he doesnt have to pay a large mortgage (she had 60% of the equity so her mortgage much smaller) or bills to heat an empty home, costs as much for one person as 3 to heat a house.
Yes the child benefit etc should be shared but is it no. He just gets constantly moaned at that he ''''only pays the minimuim'''' csa amount and that its the little things that add up.
However the finacial stuff recently showed that she can afford to save over £6k since they split, has bought a brand new car and has has at least two holiday abroad. Her income is nearly £1k a month more than my partner and she only works part time. Yes for some its really tough being a PWC.
I have just re-read by previous post, and feel the need to qualify:
Where the incomes of the RP and NRP are equal, or the income of the RP exceeds that of the NRP, the system appears to be flawed/broken. It also seems to be worse the lower the respective incomes are.
Where the income of the NRP is greater, I''m unable to say. I believe that the system is appropriate in these cases. I would expect that the majority of cases fall into this latter category for the reasons such as diminished earning capacity of the RP due to childcare etc.