Title 15
Domestic Relations

Chapter 16
Income Withholding

R.I. Gen. Laws § 15-16-13

§ 15-16-13. Registering support orders of another jurisdiction for purposes of income withholding.

(a)(1) A party seeking to enforce a support order or an income-withholding order, or both, issued by a tribunal of another state may send the documents required for registering the order to a support enforcement agency of this state.

(2) Upon receipt of the documents, the support enforcement agency, without initially seeking to register the order, shall consider and, if appropriate, use any administrative procedure authorized by the law of this state to enforce an income-withholding order. If the obligor does not contest administrative enforcement, the order need not be registered. If the obligor contests the validity or administrative enforcement of the order, the support enforcement agency shall register the order.

(3) At any hearing contesting proposed income withholding based on a support order registered under this section, the registered order, accompanying sworn or certified statement, and a certified copy of an income withholding order, if any, still in effect shall constitute prima facie proof, without further proof or foundation, that the support order is valid, that the amount of current support payments and arrearages is as stated, and that the obligee or agency would be entitled to income withholding under the law of the jurisdiction which issued the support order. Once a prima facie case has been established, the obligor may only raise the defense of mistake of fact as stated in § 15-16-5.

(b) The following documentation is required for the registration of a support order of another jurisdiction:

(1) A letter of transmittal requesting registration and enforcement;

(2) Two (2) copies, including one certified copy, of all orders to be registered, including any modification of an order;

(3) A sworn statement by the party seeking registration or a certified statement by the custodian of the records showing the amount of any arrearage;

(4) The name of the obligor and, if known:

(i) The obligor’s address and social security number;

(ii) The name and address of the obligor’s employer and any other source of income of the obligor; and

(iii) A description and the location of property of the obligor in this state not exempt from execution; and

(5) The name and address of the obligee and, if applicable, the agency or person to whom support payments are to be remitted.

(c) On receipt of a request for registration, the registering tribunal shall cause the order to be filed as a foreign judgment, together with one copy of the documents and information, regardless of their form.

(d) A registered order issued in another state is enforceable in the same manner and is subject to the same procedures as an order issued by a tribunal of this state. Except as otherwise provided in this section, a tribunal of this state shall recognize and enforce, but may not modify, a registered order if the issuing tribunal had jurisdiction.

History of Section.
P.L. 1987, ch. 163, § 1; P.L. 1996, ch. 129, § 6; P.L. 1996, ch. 131, § 6; P.L. 1996, ch. 132, § 6; P.L. 1996, ch. 133, § 6.