Rhode Island Child Support Enforcement Resource Center

Even if the non-custodial parent lives outside the state of Rhode Island, the law requires cooperation between states. The non-custodial parent is legally required to make regular child support payments, regardless of where they live.

Rhode Island Support Enforcement Measures

If a non-custodial parent does not pay child support, he or she is subject to enforcement measures in accordance with Federal and Rhode Island child support law to collect regular and past-due payments.

Who Can Enforce Court Ordered Child Support in Rhode Island?

The Rhode Island Child Support Agency Program is the state-run child support enforcement office for Rhode Island. The State of Rhode Island is required by federal law to provide services through the Child Support Agency Program (CSAP) and is funded by the federal government and the state of Rhode Island.

Full Time Equiv. Staff 120
Total Caseload 58,468

1 U.S. Office of Child Support Enforcement, Boxscores for FY 2005

Interest on Missed Child Support Payments

Rhode Island provides for interest to be charged on late child support payments, retroactive support and adjudicated arrears at a rate of 12% yearly.

Rhode Island's Statute of Limitations on Back Child Support Payments (Arrears)

Enforcement of past due child support in Rhode Island is not subject to a Statute of Limitations.

Rhode Island's Statute of Limitations for Determination of Paternity

In Rhode Island, paternity must be established within 4 years after the child reaches the age of majority.

Age of Emancipation / Age of Majority in Rhode Island

The age of emancipation in Rhode Island is 18 or if the child is attending high school, then upon graduation or age 19, which comes first. (§15-5-16.2(b) of RI General Laws)

How Are Child Support Payment Amounts Determined in Rhode Island?

Rhode Island has adopted the income shares model to determine the weekly child support order. It is based upon the philosophy that children are entitled to the standard of living based upon both parents monthly income. In order to calculate a monthly child support order, the court takes the following into account: the weekly gross income of both parents before taxes and before any other deductions, mandatory deductions (health insurance premiums, pre-existing child support payments, support of additional children). The court may consider the following discretionary deductions: retirement benefits, life insurance payments, extraordinary medical expenses, income tax adjustments, and payment of original marital debts.

Custody and Visitation Issues

Child support and visitation rights are separate issues. The court determines both and will usually order the non-custodial parent to pay support and the custodial parent to make the child available for visits.

The custodial parent must obey the court order for visitation, even if the non-custodial parent cannot or will not pay child support. The court can enforce any of its orders against either parent.

Our clients say...

It took me 10 years to catch up with my husband to establish a court order for child support. Years had gone by and his debt was in the thousands. I got Human Services involved and they told me that because I was now in a different state I had to close my case and had to open my case there. Weeks after I sent the paperwork to the Child Support Enforcement office, I received a letter saying I needed to attach notarized proof of previous payements made etc, etc, etc. I was tired of going through the process of trying to get child support owed.

I found the website for Support Collectors. I figured it probably wouldn't work and a lot of paperwork would be required...Well, there was not a lot of paperwork. It was so easy, I don't know why these other agencies need so much stuff when Support Collectors took the basic information and I had payment coming in in less than 6 weeks (this includes the time that I filed). Support Collectors kept in contact with me and was able to establish a settlement in no time. I was really surprised. I would recommend this service to anyone else (man or woman). The service was excellent.
- Lee M., Alabama
Collected $26,000

After many years of searching through various agencies for my ex-husband, a dear friend told me about the Support Collectors web site. I logged on and requested an application, thinking to myself it won't make a difference. We hadn't found him in 19 years, they won't be able to find him either. To my surprise they did and very quickly. Support Collectors handled everything very professionally and I received my settlement of $60,000 within a few months!

I would highly recommend Support Collectors to anyone who is owed child support. Thank you Support Collectors for doing what I thought was completely hopeless.
- Terry M., Illinois
Collected $26,000

Thank you so much for your help in getting the child support payments my daughter deserves! I only wish I would not have waited so long to contact you for assistance. You succeeded when everyone else had failed.

Don't try to handle this problem on your own with the department of child support services who are drowning in a sea of paperwork, let Support Collectors take care of you personally. The best part is that you don't owe them anything until they get payments for you and believe me, it is worth every penny.
- Teresa H., Illinois
Collected $26,000