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  • 17 year old runaway turning 18

    hi im 20 and my girlfriend is 17 and pregnant. she just left to visit relatives out of state. he parents just found out about the pregnancy and want to severely punish her for it when she returns. What happens to her if she doesnt return until her 18th birthday which is in about a month. Providing she doesnt get caught, can she get into any trouble when she returns? and If i were to go run away with her would anything happen to me once she turned 18? Please answer as soon as possible. Thanks.

  • #2
    Re: 17 year old runaway turning 18

    Hello,

    It is very nice of you to write to us concerning your situation and trying to help your girlfriend, especially in her absence. It shows that you truly care about her and want the best to come out of your situation. Congratulations on the baby and we hope that you both were able to frequent the doctor enough to get some support there also. We imagine that her parent’s response is natural for the most part but it doesn't excuse them from trying to punish her as a result. Do you know what measures of punishment they may use when she returns? We imagine that this must be a scary time for everyone involved, especially you and her but it looks to be that once she turns 18, she has all the control she needs to decide on whether she wants them involved or not. If she doesn't return before she turns 18, we cannot know for sure what to expect but we know that her parents reserve the right to file a runaway report in her absence. Do you know if she was given permission by her family to visit the relative? Was it planned at first for her to stay away during that time in order to avoid her parents altogether or is it just a coincidence? Do you think her parents felt tricked and this is how they chose to react?

    In most states, running away is not a crime but she can get reported as a runaway because she was still a minor when she took off. However, the closer you are to 18 it tends to change things a bit with how the police respond to taking a report. Sometimes the police avoid taking the report because they see no need to stress it when you are about to turn 18 but it depends on the county and the state you reside in. We recommend that you contact you local police to find out more about how they respond to such situations. It differs when a youth is 17 or younger in some cases. However, all this can change in a month when she turns 18 because most runaway reports become void when the youth is of legal age. There is nothing that can be done if she returns home and is already 18 because her parents cannot file a report at this point. Usually, the police are expected to return the youth home when they find you when you run away at a young age. Some states react differently with runaway laws but generally, you can only stay overnight in juvenile hall until your parents come for you or sent home after you see a judge but it is mostly when you are a habitual runner.

    In your case, you are allowed to leave home whenever you want because of your age and your parents cannot file a runaway report on your behalf. Since this guarantees you from getting pick up for running, it also means that both of you are going to fine from police contact unless you were involved in some other wrongdoing. At 18, both of you move out without consequence from parents unless you have to bet older in your state to leave home. We still recommend that you contact the police to find out more. What is your plan from here? Do you have a place to have her come back to or are you two planning on living together away from your city? If you need resources as you try to put all this together, we hope to be of service to both of you, as you try to figure it all out. We have resources in our database for agencies that support pregnant teens or alternative housing, if you are interested. We hope that you both pool your resources and that you plan for the best. Stay strong and write to us soon. You can call us at 1800RUNAWAY for other assistance. We are here 24 hours a day for you and pride ourselves on being confidential and anonymous. Good luck to both of you.

    -NRS
    Please remember you can reach us directly by calling our 24 hour hotline, 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) or through our Live Chat.

    National Runaway Safeline
    info@1800runaway.org (Crisis Email)
    1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

    Tell us what you think about your experience!
    https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: 17 year old runaway turning 18

      thanks for answering... we live in NM by the way and she is currently in texas. and her mom and step dad did know that she was going out there to visit her real dad, but she was supposed to return in early june. she refuses to go home and i dont want her to be alone in texas. but at the same time i dont want to be charged with any crime such as harboring a runaway or any thing like that. and her step dad is rather abusive to her. so i really dont know what to do.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: 17 year old runaway turning 18

        Thanks for contacting us again so soon, and of course we will definitely contact your promptly because thatswhat we are here for! Since she is visiting her real father, obviously there is some kind of relationship there. Does he know her situation? Is it possible for her to talk to him and use him as another option or as a resource for help until she does turn 18? It is understandable that you do not want her alone, but if she has her father there, is it more of an issue that she will be away from you for a time? is it even an option between you and your parents for her to live with you? again, forthe most part you can be at thelegal age of 18 to stay away from home and if that is something you all can manage to do atthat time, you certainly have that choice. if her step-dad is abusive to her, that is another route she can take, by reporting the abuse. Are you in contact with her while she is gone? Maybe the two of you can talk about the information you have learned and see what her thoughts are about proceeding with the matter. Again, you are more than welcomed to use us as a resource for support and if you have any more questions or concerns. We are 24 hours, confidential. If you prefer to talk with someone here, we can be reached at 1-800-RUNAWAY.

        -NRS
        Please remember you can reach us directly by calling our 24 hour hotline, 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) or through our Live Chat.

        National Runaway Safeline
        info@1800runaway.org (Crisis Email)
        1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

        Tell us what you think about your experience!
        https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

        Comment


        • #5
          can i get introuble??

          i am 17 turning 18 may 8th. i just recently got out of juvie and am off all probation. i graduated high school as well. my mom has recently gone into a detox program and sent me to stay with my grandma 4 hours away. if i leave here and do not get caught till after i am 18 can i get into any legal trouble at all?...what will happen?

          Comment


          • #6
            RE: can I get in trouble??

            Hi,

            Thanks for posting on our NRS Bulletin Board.
            Congratulations on graduating and getting off probation. Those are two big accomplishments.
            It must feel nice to have those achievements. We would like to extend our well wishes to your mom as also.
            We appreciate your question but NRS does not house legal experts so we can only provide general information as we understand the law.

            In most states the legal age is 18 years of age.
            Running away is a status offense for minors in most states who are under the age of eighteen.
            Once a youth reaches the majority age of their state they are seen as being an adult and no longer considered a runaway should they choose to leave home.
            Does that make sense?

            Is there any way you would consider staying with your grandma until you turn eighteen?
            We are just asking this question as an option to avoid any legal scrutiny.
            You made some huge strides in completing High School and probation so it’s great that you are looking out for yourself.

            Please feel free to call our 1-800-Runaway crisis 24hr crisis line.
            One of our liners will be glad to try and answer any other questions you might have.

            Here are a few avenues you can opt to contact NRS with:

            NRS Bulletin Board at www.1800runaway.org
            Crisis E-mail: info@1800runaway.org
            Live Chat: www.1800runaway.org

            Thank you again for contacting NRS and good luck.
            Last edited by ccsmod13; 02-05-2015, 09:21 PM.
            Please remember you can reach us directly by calling our 24 hour hotline, 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) or through our Live Chat.

            National Runaway Safeline
            info@1800runaway.org (Crisis Email)
            1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

            Tell us what you think about your experience!
            https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

            Comment


            • #7
              thank you very much for your reply

              i have no problem staying here till may 8th...but my little sister is turning 8 years old on april 11th...and they are saying that i cant go and see her, there was no papper work sighned or anything f the such sying that my grandparents have custody of me untill i am 18, so if i left to go see my sister on her birthday and then came back can i get into legal trouble do you think?

              Comment


              • #8
                re: 17 yo runaway turning 18

                Hi there,
                Thanks for coming to us at the National Runaway Switchboard, we thank you for sharing some of your story with us. Again, we are not legal experts so nothing that we say has any real legal stance. Generally speaking if your mother still has custody of you then she is the only one able to give you permission on where you can or cannot be. You have the option of calling the local police to ask them about any consequences or conflicts you may run into if you would like to see what information they have to offer. We can also help you make that call if you contact us through phone.
                Have you thought about waiting that extra couple of week so that you can avoid any issues? Then as you said once you turn 18 you may not run into any issues at all.
                We are here to help you think through your options and/or give you any available resources that may be able to assist you. If you can give us a call at 1-800-RUNAWAY, we are 24/7 anonymous and confidential. Or you can reach us through our chat from 4:30-11:30pm CST. We would like to be able to further talk with you to help you figure out what you would like to do. We look forward to hearing from you soon.
                Take care,
                NRS
                Please remember you can reach us directly by calling our 24 hour hotline, 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) or through our Live Chat.

                National Runaway Safeline
                info@1800runaway.org (Crisis Email)
                1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

                Tell us what you think about your experience!
                https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

                Comment


                • #9
                  Can you be detained or returned for leaving your home at 17?

                  I've recently turned 17. My mother sent me to my grandparents for the summer a year ago and she agreed to let me stay. My mother did not treat me at all like she should have her child and I was very happy to get away from her and to be with my grandparents. My mother signed over a power of attorney to my grandparents to watch over me. But I am very very unhappy in this home with my grandparents. I'm ready to learn/ experience life on my own. My mother lives in Florida and I live here in Tennessee with my grandparents. I will graduate early in December of 2013 and will start attending college at TTU in Janurary 2013. I have my own car and job. I don't plan on dropping out of school. I don't drink, smoke, or do drugs. What I want is to leave the household I am in now, there's is a place for me that is safe, actually not that far from my grandparents, and a better enviroment for me. What I need to know is: How much trouble am I going to get in? Or will I get in to any at all? And if there are any other possible ways I can get around running out and hurting my grandparents feelings how?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re:Can you be detained or returned for leaving your home at 17?

                    Hello there,

                    We’re glad you decided to reach out to us at the National Runaway Switchboard. It sounds like you’ve been dealing with a lot over the past year and are at a point where you are exploring possible options. We are not legal experts here, but we can provide some general answers and resources that might be able to further help your situation. To our knowledge, running away is just a status offense which means minors cannot leave home without permission simply due to their age. Most states recognize specific crimes associated with running away such as harboring a runaway, crossing state lines with a minor, and contributing to the delinquency of a minor. These are usually just misdemeanors, but to know for sure you would have to talk to local law enforcement.

                    Many parents/guardians decide to contact local police to file a runaway report which puts runaway youth in a National database. Police do not always actively search for runaways, but if they come across someone they suspect has run away and run their name in their system, they will see whether they have been reported as a runaway. Sometimes police will detain runaway youth temporarily until the parent/guardian can pick them up or other arrangements can be made. Unless other crimes have been committed, they don’t typically take runaways to juvenile hall. However, that is another thing that would have to be determined by local law enforcement.
                    Some other options might be staying temporarily in a runaway/homeless youth shelter or emancipation, except unfortunately the state of Tennessee does not have a formal emancipation procedure. We do not know exactly where you are located in Tennessee, but one place to start is National Safe Place. You can visit their website, www.nationalsafeplace.org, and click on your state to see if there are any nearby shelters. They also have a text for help option.

                    To continue discussing your situation and potential options, we encourage you to try contacting us directly either by calling us 24/7 at 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) or our Live Chat program if you feel more comfortable. Visit www.1800runaway.org and click on the red “Live Chat” button everyday from 4:30 to 11:30 pm CST. Best of luck!

                    -NRS
                    Last edited by ccsmod13; 02-05-2015, 09:22 PM.
                    Please remember you can reach us directly by calling our 24 hour hotline, 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) or through our Live Chat.

                    National Runaway Safeline
                    info@1800runaway.org (Crisis Email)
                    1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

                    Tell us what you think about your experience!
                    https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      17 year old runaway

                      if i just turned 17 and i was court ordered to go to rehab, and i already have a runaway charge and beond parents control, whats the possabilities of what could happen if i run away untill i turn 18 and didnt get cought? could i do more then a year in jail for it, or would it be dropped being my charges are all status offences?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        RE: 17 year old runaway

                        Thank you for reaching out to us and telling us your story; it was very brave of you to do so. Now, we aren’t legally trained so we wouldn’t be able to tell you for sure what would happen but we can try to find some resources for you.

                        It sounds like you have been mandated to attend rehab and have left home again but now you are wondering what will happen when you turn 18; is that correct? You mentioned that all of your offenses are status offenses; can you tell us more about why the court mandated you to attend rehab? Again, we aren’t legally trained here so we don’t know what would happen once you turned 18. Since you were court ordered to attend rehab, the courts may make you attend even after you turn 18; they would be the ones who would be able to answer that question.

                        We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week so if you would like to call us and talk more about what is going on, please do so; our number is 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929). We also have online chat services that are available from 4:30 PM-11:30 PM (CST) through our website (www.1800runaway.org). Please contact us at anytime and we can provide you with some additional resources.

                        We look forward to hearing from you and wish you the best of luck.

                        ~NRS
                        Last edited by ccsmod13; 02-05-2015, 09:24 PM.
                        Please remember you can reach us directly by calling our 24 hour hotline, 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) or through our Live Chat.

                        National Runaway Safeline
                        info@1800runaway.org (Crisis Email)
                        1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

                        Tell us what you think about your experience!
                        https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          18 in 3 months

                          I will be 18 in 3 months and I live in ny for many years I've been dealing with verbal and physical abuse by my mom I wanted to know if I left to Pennsylvania to live with my girlfriend who is 21 and her mom can I get them in trouble?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: 18 in 3 months

                            We are glad that you contacted the National Runaway Switchboard through our bulletin boards. It sounds like you are going through a difficult time right now. Abuse, both verbal and physical can be so hard to live with and we want you to know that you are not alone. Have you ever talked with anyone about what’s going on at home? You must be a very strong individual. Just reaching out for help takes strength. We want you to know that you do not have to continue to live in an abusive home. You have many options including abuse reporting, that we’d be happy to talk about with you.

                            You have a very good question about getting your girlfriend and her mom in trouble. It seems like they might be supportive of you and want to help you out? Have you talked with your mom at all about how she would feel about you going there? Although we’re not legal experts here, we can tell you that in many places harboring a runaway is considered against the law. You can always contact the local police department through the non-emergency line and ask anonymously about your rights regarding this situation.

                            Additionally, you can contact the National Runaway Switchboard 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-RUNAWAY (1-800-786-2929) or via live chat 4:30-11:30pm (CST) through our website, 1800runaway.org to talk about some other options. No one deserves to live in a home that is unsafe and we want to do anything that we can to help you feel safe. Again, we are glad that you found us on here and that you are able to ask some difficult questions. Please don’t hesitate to contact us so that we can help you further explore some other resources.

                            We wish you the best,
                            -NRS

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              im out but can the person i'm living with gets punished

                              i'm 17 i will be 18 in two months which is in febuary i live in chicago. i was at home going through stuff with my mom we will get in to a big argument an she puts me out. i calls no reply i message her an facebook no reply like its hard for me go around. i'm tierd of feeling unwanted i'm tierd of feeling uncomfortable in my own house so now i'm living with a close friend can her mother get in trouble for me living with her i've been out my mother house since four months ago. she put me out sep.

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