2023 Connecticut General Statutes
Title 46b - Family Law
Chapter 816 - Support
Section 46b-215a. - Commission for Child Support Guidelines. Duties. Members. Validity of actions taken during vacancy.

(a) The Commission for Child Support Guidelines is established to issue child support and arrearage guidelines to ensure the appropriateness of criteria for the establishment of child support awards and to review and issue updated guidelines every four years. Such guidelines shall ensure, subject to section 46b-215c, that current support, health care coverage, child care contribution and orders of payment on any arrearage and past due support shall be based on the income of both parents and the obligor's ability to pay. Such guidelines shall also ensure the appropriateness of periodic payment orders on arrearages when the obligor (1) is the child's legal guardian and resides with the child, or (2) is not the child's legal guardian but has resided with the child either for at least six months immediately preceding the order of payment on the arrearage or for at least six months of the twelve months immediately preceding such order. In such cases, the commission shall consider exemptions similar to those in the uniform contribution scale adopted pursuant to section 4a-12. Updated arrearage guidelines shall be issued at the same time as the child support guidelines.

(b) The commission shall consist of thirteen members as follows:

(1) The Chief Court Administrator, or the Chief Court Administrator's designee;

(2) The Commissioner of Social Services, or the commissioner's designee;

(3) The Attorney General, or the Attorney General's designee;

(4) The chairpersons and ranking members of the joint standing committee on judiciary, or their designees;

(5) The Child Advocate, or the Child Advocate's designee;

(6) A representative of the Connecticut Bar Association, designated by the Connecticut Bar Association; and

(7) Four members appointed by the Governor, one of whom represents an agency that delivers legal services to the poor, one of whom represents the financial concerns of child support obligors, one of whom represents the Commission on Women, Children, Seniors, Equity and Opportunity and one of whom represents the rights and best interests of children.

(c) The Commissioner of Social Services shall convene the commission whenever a review is required to issue updated guidelines pursuant to subsection (a) of this section and shall provide staffing for the administrative and regulatory responsibilities of the commission and, within available appropriations, funding for economic studies required by the commission.

(d) The chairperson of the commission shall be elected by the members of the commission. A vacancy on the commission at any time shall not invalidate any actions taken by the commission during such vacancy, provided at least nine members of the commission are serving at the time of such action.

(P.A. 89-203, S. 1, 3; P.A. 91-391, S. 7; P.A. 92-253, S. 1; P.A. 93-262, S. 1, 87; 93-329, S. 5; P.A. 11-214, S. 20; P.A. 16-48, S. 1; May Sp. Sess. P.A. 16-3, S. 165; P.A. 19-117, S. 139.)

History: P.A. 91-391 amended section to require commission to establish and promulgate guidelines to ensure orders of payment on arrearage and past due support are based on obligor's ability to pay and specified situations when guidelines shall ensure appropriateness of payments on arrearage; P.A. 92-253 changed deadline for initial issuance of updated guidelines from January 1, 1991, to January 1, 1993; P.A. 93-262 authorized substitution of commissioner and department of social services for commissioner and department of human resources, effective July 1, 1993; P.A. 93-329 changed date for updated guidelines from not later than January 1, 1993, to not later than October 1, 1993; P.A. 11-214 divided existing provisions into Subsecs. (a), (b) and (d), amended Subsec. (a) to revise provisions re guidelines, add “arrearage” re guidelines, delete references to Sec. 8 of P.A. 85-548, October 1, 1993, and January 1, 1992, provide that guidelines ensure, subject to Sec. 46b-215c, that current support, health care coverage, child care contribution and orders of payment be based on income of both parents, and make technical changes, amended Subsec. (b) to add Subdiv. designators and make technical changes, added Subsec. (c) to require Commissioner of Social Services to convene commission when review is required to issue updated guidelines, and amended Subsec. (d) to provide that a vacancy on commission shall not invalidate actions taken during vacancy if at least nine members are serving; P.A. 16-48 amended Subsec. (b) to replace “eleven” with “thirteen” re members of commission, add new Subdiv. (5) re Child Advocate or designee, redesignate existing Subdivs. (5) and (6) as Subdivs. (6) and (7), and replace “three” with “four” and add provision re one who represents the rights and best interests of children in redesignated Subdiv. (7), and amended Subsec. (c) to add provision re Commissioner of Social Services to provide staffing for commission and funding for economic studies; May Sp. Sess. P.A. 16-3 amended Subsec. (b)(6) to replace “Permanent Commission on the Status of Women” with “Commission on Women, Children and Seniors”, effective July 1, 2016; P.A. 19-117 amended Subsec. (b)(7) to replace “Commission on Women, Children and Seniors” with “Commission on Women, Children, Seniors, Equity and Opportunity”, effective July 1, 2019.

Cited. 219 C. 703; 222 C. 699; 231 C. 1; 236 C. 582. As to regulations issued re child support guidelines, trial court properly included in defendant's gross income contributions made by his domestic partner toward his living expenses when it determined his child support obligation under such guidelines. 244 C. 350. Re parent whose sole income is federal Supplemental Security Income and state supplementation, guidelines expressly exclude such income from determination of child support and the “best interest of the child” deviation criterion is not applicable and cannot be used to require child support payments from such parent. 255 C. 617. When parties' combined net weekly income exceeds upper limit of the guidelines' schedule, court shall apply the principles that underlie the child support guidelines. 296 C. 80.

Cited. 25 CA 555; Id., 563; Id., 693; 28 CA 632; 29 CA 436; 37 CA 856. As to regulations issued re child support guidelines, trial court properly imposed a deviation on basis of the extraordinary reduction in plaintiff's living expenses. 83 CA 398. In deviating from the child support guidelines because of a disparity in the income of the parties, such disparity may only be considered when the custodial parent has the higher income and deviation from the presumptive support amount would enhance the lower income parent's ability to foster a relationship with the child. 204 CA 302.

Cited. 43 CS 400.

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