About Us

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The mission of the Child Support Agency is derived from the title IV-D of the Social Security Act:

To enhance the well being of children by assuring that assistance in obtaining support, including financial and medical, is available to children through locating parents, establishing paternity, establishing support obligations and monitoring and enforcing those obligations.

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Child support is more than just about money

It is the responsibility of every parent to make sure their child has enough food to eat, has their health care needs met, clothes to wear, and a safe place to live. Still, some children do not get the support they need. Regardless of their living situation or relationship, both parents should provide the financial and emotional support a child needs to grow into a responsible adult. Rhode Island's child support program can help.

To encourage parental responsibility, the Office of Child Support Services establishes parentage for children, establishes court orders for financial and medical support, modifies or changes the order when appropriate, and vigorously enforces support orders. The Office of Child Support Services promotes the emotional involvement of both parents in the life of the child by working with other state agencies, community groups, schools and hospitals.

Per the Rhode Island Uniform Parentage Act a parent can be an Intended Parent, Presumed Parent, Alleged Genetic Parent, Acknowledged Parent, or an Adjudicated Parent in every child support case. The custodial parent or CP is the parent who lives with the child and has the primary day-to-day responsibility and who is entitled to receive child support for the care of the child.  The other parent is often referred to as the non-custodial parent or the NCP.  The NCP often has visitation, or joint custody of the child and is obligated to pay child support.

Remember: your child has the right to support and you have the right to the services this office provides. All the services described on this site are available to you.

We hope the information here will help you find your way along the child support road. Keep in mind: Child support is more than just money. If you would like more information, please contact the support office at 401-458-4400 and have available your Case ID and PIN number. That is all you need to gather important information about your case.

Additional Related Topics

Parents receiving RIWORKS or medical assistance through Rite Care for their children will be required to pursue child support services (the IV-D program) through the Office of Child Support Services.

Parents who do not receive benefits through the Rhode Island Works Program (RI Works) or medical assistance through Rite Care for their children are eligible to receive child support services as well, and should apply for these services if they need assistance to establish parentage, and/or to establish or enforce medical or child support orders. (Application for Child Support Services English and Spanish)

We stand ready to serve you as quickly as possible. However, we cannot properly manage your case(s) if you do not keep us up-to-date regarding changes in your situation. It's very important that you contact us immediately if:

  • Your address or phone number changes (complete the change of address form)
  • You change employers
  • Your employer's name, address, or phone number changes
  • You change your social security number
  • You change your driver's license number
  • The court orders a change in your child's custody arrangements, and/or
  • You receive any new court orders relating to child support

An application fee of $20.00 is required to start child support efforts for families not receiving public assistance. In a never assistance case when the State collects $500 in child support, annually a fee of $25.00 is required.  Currently, the State pays the federal share of this required fee. 

There is no fee charged to families receiving benefits through the Rhode Island Works Program (RI Works) or medical assistance through the Rite Care program.

In order to receive child support services, it is critical that all necessary information is provided by the person applying for services. During the process of applying for and receiving services, there will be information requested that some may consider personal. Please remember that all information requested is necessary in order to give the best possible service to your case. All information you provide will be strictly confidential.

Effective January 30, 2018, the Rhode Island Child Support Rules and Regulations were finalized and filed with the Secretary of State's Office.

A May 2019 amendment included employment in another country as an exemption for Passport Denial.