Title 15
Domestic Relations

Chapter 5
Divorce and Separation

R.I. Gen. Laws § 15-5-26

§ 15-5-26. Duties and liabilities of employer under income assignment order or order for wage withholding.

(a) Any wage withholding agent failing to comply with any requirements in §§ 15-5-24 and 15-5-25 may be punished by the court for civil contempt. The court shall first afford the wage withholding agent a reasonable opportunity to purge itself of contempt.

(b) Any wage withholding agent who fails or refuses to deliver income pursuant to an order under §§ 15-5-24 and 15-5-25, when the garnishing agent has had in its possession the income, shall be personally liable for the amount of the income which the wage withholding agent failed or refused to deliver, together with costs, interest, and reasonable attorney’s fees.

(c) Any wage withholding agent who dismisses, demotes, disciplines, or in any way penalizes an obligor on account of any proceeding to collect support, on account of any order or orders entered by the court in the proceeding, or on account of the wage withholding agent’s compliance with the order or orders, shall be liable to the obligor for all damages, together with costs, interest thereon, and reasonable attorney’s fees resulting from the action, and shall be subject to a fine not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100). The wage withholding agent shall be required to make full restitution to the aggrieved obligor including reinstatements and back pay.

(d) A wage withholding agent may be enjoined by a court of competent jurisdiction from continuing any action in violation of §§ 15-5-24 and 15-5-25.

(e) Any proceeding against a wage withholding agent under this section must be commenced within ninety (90) days after a wage withholding agent’s act or failure to act upon which the proceeding is based.

(f) Compliance by a wage withholding agent with an order issued under §§ 15-5-24 and 15-5-25 operates as a discharge of the wage withholding agent’s liability to the obligor as to that portion of the obligor’s income so affected.

History of Section.
P.L. 1980, ch. 304, § 1; P.L. 1984, ch. 199, § 2; P.L. 1985, ch. 143, § 1; P.L. 1997, ch. 170, § 1.