TITLE 15
Domestic Relations

CHAPTER 15-16
Income Withholding

SECTION 15-16-2


§ 15-16-2 Definitions.

For purposes of this chapter, except as may otherwise be required by the context:

(1) "Agency" means either the court or agency of any other jurisdiction with income withholding functions similar to those of the department of administration, division of taxation, child support enforcement defined in this chapter, including the issuance and enforcement of support orders.

(2) "Child" means any child, whether above or below the age of majority, with respect to whom a support order exists.

(3) "CSE system" means the Rhode Island family court/department of administration, division of taxation, child support computer enforcement system, which system maintains the official record of support orders and arrearages of all support orders entered upon it in accordance with applicable administrative orders issued by the Rhode Island family court.

(4) "Court" means the Rhode Island family court and, when the context requires, means either the court or agency of any other jurisdiction with functions similar to those defined in this chapter, including the issuance and enforcement of support orders.

(5) "Department" means the division of taxation, within the department of administration.

(6) "Income" shall include amounts paid or payable by a payor who is subject to the jurisdiction of this state to an obligor as:

(i) Compensation paid or payable for personal services, whether denominated as wages, salary, commission, bonus, or otherwise, whether taxable or not taxable, and specifically including periodic payments pursuant to pension or retirement programs or insurance policies of any type; or

(ii) Benefit payments or other similar compensation paid or payable to the obligor by or through a department, agency, or political subdivision of the state or federal government or by an insurance company, including unemployment compensation benefits, workers' compensation benefits, and temporary disability benefits, except where garnishment or attachment of benefit payments is prohibited by federal law.

(7) "Income withholding order" means an order to withhold income of an obligor to pay support, arrearages, and fees, if any, authorized under this chapter, whether the order is issued by the department and filed with the clerk of the family court, or whether the order is issued by the family court as provided for in this chapter or whether the order is issued by a court or agency of another jurisdiction.

(8) "Jurisdiction" means any state or political subdivision, territory or possession of the United States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.

(9) "Magistrate " means a magistrate of the family court pursuant to § 8-10-3.1.

(10) "Obligee" means any person or entity entitled to receive support under an order of support and includes an agency of another jurisdiction to which a person has assigned his or her right to support.

(11) "Obligor" means any person required to make payments under the terms of a support order for a child, spouse, or former spouse.

(12) "State plan" means the Rhode Island state plan for child and spousal support established in accordance with title IV, part D, § 454 of the federal Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. § 654, which plan includes, but is not limited to, the establishment and enforcement of support orders on behalf of a person, whether residing in this state or another jurisdiction, who is:

(i) Receiving public assistance pursuant to part A of title IV of the federal Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. § 601 et seq.;

(ii) Receiving foster care maintenance payments pursuant to part E of title IV of the federal Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. § 670 et seq.; or

(iii) Not receiving aid to families with dependent children nor foster care maintenance payments but who files an application for support enforcement services with the department of administration, division of taxation, child support enforcement, or any authorized title IV, part D agency of another jurisdiction.

(13) "Support order" means a judgment, decree or order, whether temporary, final, or subject to modification, issued by the family court, by the division of taxation within the department of administration under § 15-16-7 or by a court or agency of another jurisdiction, for the benefit of a child, a spouse, or a former spouse, which provides for monetary support, health care, arrearages, or reimbursement, and may include related costs and fees, interest, income withholding, attorney's fees, and other relief.

(14) "Tribunal" means a court, administrative agency, or quasi-judicial entity authorized to establish, enforce, or modify support orders or to determine parentage.

(15) "Withholding agent" means any person, firm, partnership, corporation, association, trust, federal or state agency, department, or political subdivision, paying or obligated to pay income, as defined in this chapter, to an obligor.

(16) "Remittee", as used in this section, means the division of taxation, child support enforcement or its designee, authorized to receive wage withholding, including an agency designated by another state to receive income withholding pursuant to chapter 23.1 of title 15. Remittee does not include an individual obligee/custodial parent.

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; P.L. 1997, ch. 170, § 6; P.L. 1998, ch. 442, § 7; P.L. 2001, ch. 155, § 4; P.L. 2004, ch. 6, § 33.)