It's not uncommon for men to be picked up on bench warrants issued by Rhode Island Family Court Judges for their failure to show up at court hearings or because they are not paying their child support.
Yet each story is different. Some men deserve a break. Some are unskilled. Some fall on bad luck. Some are injured or depressed for reasons that may be directly related to their family issues. And yes. . . some are just plain lazy and are doing everything in their power to avoid their child support.
Identifying the fathers who shirk their responsibilities is not that difficult. They sing a little tune I like to call the Rhode Island Child Support Blues. The key may be a little different or the pitch but it is essentially the same.
Judge: Sir, tell me why I shouldn't keep you at the Adult Correctional Institution for not paying your child support.
Father #1: Well judge I've been looking for work but nobody wants to hire me.
Father #2: Judge first I was laid off and then I got locked up on a bum wrap and I just got out.
Father #3: I can't do any more than I'm doing judge. I have four other children that I have to try to pay for too and I can't find a job.
Most of the time the excuse is that they indicate that they "have been doing everything possible to find a job but no one will hire them".
But there's a refrain to that tune. In today's market, there is an endless opportunity to make money. Some fathers walk away with a child support obligation as little as $10 a week and still complain that it's not something they can manage.
In several court hearings, I take the opportunity in these types of cases to let the judge know that I can teach the father how to make an additional $30 to $50 more per week with very little effort and little or no money.
Without further excuses, these fathers must make their payments.
Divorce isn't easy. I know. I've been there.
My business isn't divorce or child support or child custody. It's my job to help you reach a brighter tomorrow!