How is Rhode Island (RI) Child sustain determined in divorce situations, paternity situations, child sustain situations and child visitation situations?
In most situations, sustain is determined by the “Rhode Island Family Court Child sustain Formula and Guidelines”. In the great majority of situations in Rhode Island, the minimum Rhode Island sustain guideline amount is used to determine kid sustain.
However, a parent has the right to seek more then the minimum guidelines because the guidelines are supposed to be the minimum amount a parent will receive as child sustain. In Theory, The Guidelines are intended to be the floor rather then the ceiling for sustain. In actuality, the minimum guidelines are used in the great majority of Rhode Island sustain situations. Article by RI Child sustain Attorney.
The court is entitled to look at the assets of a party in calculating child sustain. The Family Court can also look at extraordinary expenses of either party and can look at the needs and expenses of the parties. The Court can look at any circumstances the estimate believes appropriate in calculating child sustain. If a person is underemployed or refusing to work when capable of working then the court can determine the earning capacity of the party. Some Judges consistently go over the minimum child sustain guidelines.
The Rhode Island guidelines uses an income shares form in which the modificated gross income of both parents are used to determine the correct amount of child sustain. Essentially, the guidelines look at the combined modificated Gross income of both parties. modificated gross income method the gross income of a party with certain required deductions from gross income for medical insurance & dental insurance. Another required deduction is for additional minor dependants (children). There are also certain discretionary deductions that some judges may allow such as life insurance costs.
After calculating the combined modificated gross income of the parties, the RI Guidelines should be utilized to determine what the state of Rhode Island believes that two parents with that amount of modificated gross income would pay for sustain if the parents were nevertheless residing together. After that number is determined daycare expenses are additional onto that amount.
The non custodial parent pursuant to the minimum guidelines should be obligated to pay a percentage of that amount set forth above that is the same same percentage of that persons modificated gross income to the total modificated gross income of both parties.
For example: If Mom makes $1000 a month and dad makes $4000 a month and each has $200 dollars of medical insurance payments then the modificated gross income of mom is $800 and the modificated gross income of dad is 3800. The combined modificated gross income of both is $4600. Dad makes $82.6 percent of the combined modificated gross income of the parties and is required to pay 82.6 percent of the minimum guideline amount guideline amount plus the daycare expenses.
The next step is to get a copy of the most recent version of the RI Guidelines. This can be obtained at the RI Family Court or online.
Assuming that the parties have two children the child sustain guidelines indicate that the correct child sustain amount is $956. assuming there is no daycare* in this hypothetical then the father would be obligated to pay 82.6 percent or $956 per month which would be $789.65 per month or $183 per week.
*(if there is daycare then add the work related child care costs minus the federal tax credit. Please observe that the state of Rhode Island uses a rule of thumb of approximately 75 percent to 80 percent of the actual daycare expense) Pursuant to the 2018 child sustain guidelines, the non custodial parent is also entitled to deduction from their gross income for the amoun he pays for daycare.
The Guidelines in theory and in most situations in actuality are the minimum amount a person is required to pay. The estimate has discretion to go over the minimum Guidelines if there is justification under the circumstances.
The types of circumstances that may justify a estimate issuing a sustain order above the Rhode Island sustain guidelines are:
a) Substantial assets
b) standard of living and expenses that far go beyond reported gross income
c) extraordinary necessary expenses and needs related for the child
If the parties agree to child sustain below the Rhode Island sustain Guidelines it will be allowed. These circumstances could include, visitation exceeding the norm, extraordinary payments of the child expenses or already sometimes just based on the parties agreement.