Arrears of CSA maintenance

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    Should arrears of CSA be counted for the period they covered or at the date the are paid? For example, a mother has regular payments of £162 but is also receiving £56 in arrears.




    As far as I am aware this should be treated as income in respect of the period it covers.

    Do I know what I'm doing? The jury's out on that........................

    Kevin D

    I agree with Mark.

    The £162 counts for “now”; the arrears count for the period they are in respect of.



    Thanks for that.


    Further to this – has anybody else had problems with not being able to identify the period that arrears payments cover?

    We had a case where the claimant received infrequent payments of arrears, £20 here, £40 there and the CSA were unable to allocate these payments to a period. They actually confirmed this in writing. We asked the Adelphi for advice and they couldn’t give us any.

    In the end we treated the payments as income for the week that they were received as we couldn’t think of how else to do it. However, this has meant that everytime a payment is received – benefit has to be adjusted. We were wary what would happen if the claimant appealed but luckily they haven’t – as yet!

    Kevin D

    Taking the position of the clmt, I’d probably argue that the intermittent payments are capital – evidenced by the CSA clearly stating it isn’t possible to attribute such payments to a period.

    However, if the CSA say they are also unable to identify arrears that are on-going REGULAR payments, then it would be arguable that there is sufficient case law /etc to suggest the arrears would/should be counted as being income when they are paid.

    So, once again, each case on the facts…. 😕 Hmmmm…. More judgement calls….

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