Modifying Child Support Payments

At times, child support payments may need to be modified. If there is a significant change in a parent’s employment such as a promotion or they’ve been laid-off, or a life change such as a change in the amount of time that the child is spending with one parent, a child support order can be modified by the court. If there has been no change in circumstances, there is a three-year wait from the issue date of the order to obtain a review.

To request a modification to the existing child support order due to a change in circumstances, a review from the State of Rhode Island’s Office of Child support Services will need to be requested. This review will be used to determine if there is enough evidence to justify a hearing in Family Court to modify and create a new child support order.

Paying and Enforcing Child Support

Once child support payments are calculated and a parent is ordered to make payments, the order will be enforced. Payments are typically withheld from the non-custodial parent’s wages by their employer, or arrangements can be made to have them sent as a lump sum payment. If the parent does not comply with the order to make payments, there can be several consequences.

Possible Consequences if Payments Aren’t Made

  • Suspending the person’s driver’s license
  • Reporting of nonpayment to the credit bureau
  • Placing a lien on personal property or real estate
  • Denying a passport
  • Being found in contempt of proceedings
  • Facing criminal prosecution

Contact a Rhode Island Family Law Attorney

In Rhode Island, a lawyer will not be provided by the Office of Child Support Services to provide representation for your case. Consulting with a family law attorney can protect both you and your children’s legal rights and can ensure that a fair amount is awarded for child support payments. An experienced lawyer can help determine the amount of child support to be paid, determine if any modifications need to be made, and enforce the order to pay child support.

Do You Need to Speak to a Rhode Island Family Law Attorney?

If you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce family law attorney, please contact us online or call our Warwick office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick, and all areas of Rhode Island.


Christopher L. Russo
Helping Rhode Island personal injury victims for nearly three decades to get the compensation they deserve.