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17 year old runaway turning 18

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  • I live in Washington and I will be 18 in 43 days. My mom has let me live at my friend's house since June 6, 2017. She keeps threatening to make me come home if I don't do what she wants (nothing bad) but if I tell her no and no that I won't come home what can happen to me and the people I'm staying with?

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    • Reply: I live in Washington and I will be 18 in 43 days.

      Hello,
      Thanks for contacting the National Runaway Safeline.

      It sounds like you are with dilemma about complying with your mother’s wishes or facing the possibility of being told you have to come home.
      We are not legal experts at NRS you might consider contacting your local police department’s non-emergency number to ask about any consequences you might face legally by choosing to disobey your mother’s wishes.
      If you would like to speak more about your situation please call 1-800-Runaway (786-2929) or www.1800Runaway.org (Live chat).

      Hope to hear from you soon.

      Take care,
      L.M.

      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
      [email protected] (Crisis Email)
      1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

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

      Comment


      • Turning 18 in 2 weeks
        i have a baby and CPS took away my sisters from my mother and i know i'm next, i'm living with my boyfriend for a better life because i got kicked out by my moms boyfriend i really don't want to be taken away too. i'm scared and i would really appreciate it if someone would answer this question for me... can CPS take my child and i after i turn 18?

        Comment


        • ccsmod7
          ccsmod7 commented
          Editing a comment
          Hello there, thanks fro reaching out.

          It sounds like you’re going through a lot right now, but we commend you for being wise enough to reach out! From the sounds of things, it looks like you’re scared you’re going to lose your baby because you don’t have a stable home and your mother has had issues with CPS before. We’re really sorry to hear you’re going through that, the idea of losing one’s child has got to be overwhelming.

          To answer your question regarding CPS, yes they can take away someone’s child after the parent turns 18. However, CPS does not seek to remove a child from its parent unless CPS finds the parent is neglecting or endangering their child. Based on the information you provided, it sounds like you’re trying to protect your child and are living with your boyfriend to provide your child with a better life. However, without knowing more about your situation and your mother’s previous issues with CPS, it is hard to say what next steps CPS might take. Given this, we’d recommend you calling us at 1-800-Runaway to be able to talk this through further. Here at the National Runaway Safeline, we are always available to talk through your situation and try and help you come up with the best, safest plan of action. We’re available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The number is 1-800-Runaway. Call anytime.

      • hi, i'm 15 years old and wanting to run away. i need to get out of my grandma because of my aunt and uncle. if i run away and don't return back till i'm 18, will i go to jail when i return? or if i get found before i turn 18 will i go to juvi?

        Comment


        • ccsmod7
          ccsmod7 commented
          Editing a comment
          Hello there, thanks for reaching out today. Sounds like you are wanting to leave your grandma's due to your aunt and uncle. That seems like a really tough situation.

          Running away is usually considering a status offense. Meaning that it is not illegal or something that could result in you going to jail, rather it is just something you cannot do due to your age and being a minor. If you are found by police after your guardian lists you as a runaway, you typically would be returned home not sent to juvi. Once you are 18, if you are considered a legal adult in your state you would not be returned home. If that is your plan, you might double-check that 18 is the majority age in your state, meaning it is the age that you are considered a legal adult.

          These were great questions, if you have additional questions or would like to talk more about your situation please do not hesitate to reach out to us via chat or phone so we can best help. We truly want to support you through this, and encourage you to always keep our number in mind.

          Be safe,

          NRS

      • My boyfriend is in states custody and ran from a current facility he was in on July 25th and got caught the 16th of September. He turned 18 during his time of running and got charged with in state runaway. How long will he have to do?

        Comment


        • ccsmod2
          ccsmod2 commented
          Editing a comment
          Hello, thank you for reaching out to National Runaway Safeline. It sounds like you are very concerned about your boyfriend, we are sure that he appreciates your support. Here at NRS we are not legal experts so unfortunately, we will not be able to say for sure how much time he will have to serve. You can reach out to your local court house for assistance. Please feel free to contact our 24 crisis hotline (1-800-786-2929) if you have any further questions.
          -NRS

      • I am 17 and a junior in high school I was wondering when Is the soonest I could move out . I don’t turn 18 until August. I don’t want to get in much trouble

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        • ccsmod0
          ccsmod0 commented
          Editing a comment
          Hello, thank you for taking the time to write to us here at the National Runaway Safeline. It sounds like you want to know the soonest that you can move out of your parent’s house. While we are not legal expert’s o we can only speculate what could happen. To our knowledge the age of majority is 18 this means until day of 18 you have to obey where your guardians say you have to stay. As mentioned previously we are not the authority on runaway laws and regulations so if you want more definitive information we would encourage you to contact your local non-emergency police.
          Again thank you for reaching out and we hope that you can gets the answers that you need. Also if you ever needed to talk about what is going on you are more than welcome to call us anytime 1-800-786-2929
          Best wishes,
          NRS

      • I am 17 turning 18 in 2 weeks. My mother and I argue alot due to the fact she found out I was pregnant. I don't want to put any stress on my baby and think leaving with my boyfriend is the best thing for me. I live in Arizona. Will I be charged with anything if I leave? Can you help?

        Comment


        • Reply: I am 17 turning 18 in 2 weeks.

          Hello,
          Thanks for contacting the National Runaway Safeline.

          While we are not experts on the law, 18 is generally the age that an individual may leave home without parent permission. If you are under 18 and leave home, your parent/guardian may file you as a runaway and you may be returned home. Also, those you stay with may run the risk of being charged with harboring a runaway. For more specifics on the law, the local non-emergency police or legal aid may better answer legal questions.

          We are here as support to help through this challenging time. We can best help by phone or chat as NRS is unable to respond more than twice by email to assist you. If you would like to talk more in detail please call or chat soon.
          Our contact information is 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929); www.1800runaway.org (click on the chat button).

          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
          [email protected] (Crisis Email)
          1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

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

          Comment


          • I'm 17 turning 18 in January which is 3 months away. I live with my mom and stepfather and each day it gets worse and worse. My mom keeps having these outbursts randomly that always end up with me being emotionally abused and most of the time pushed around. My stepdad is also no help and encourages my mother and sometimes takes part in the emotional abuse. Every day it gets worse and worse for me. I can't bear to stay at my home anymore, but my parents threatened to call the cops and report if I didn't come home. My several friends have offered to allow me to stay in their homes still I turn 18, but I don't want them to get in trouble with the law. If I keep switching in between each friend's house, can they still get in trouble even if it's just for a few days? Also, if I told my parents where I was going and was in no danger, could they still claim that I was a runaway and force the cops to bring me home?

            Comment


            • ccsmod6
              ccsmod6 commented
              Editing a comment
              Hi,
              Thanks for reaching out. We are not legal experts, but we do have a lot of experience and information in this area. Because you are still a minor, if you leave home without your parent’s permission you will be considered a runaway, even if you think you are in no danger. Your friends could get in trouble if your parents decided to get lawyers involved and decided your friends were harboring a runaway. This is a lot of information, and if you want to talk more about it, feel free to call us at 1-800-786-2929.

              Emotional abuse is never okay, and it is totally understandable that you would not want to deal with that anymore. If you feel that running away is the best option, it is important to think about it and the possibilities that go with it. Because you are so close to 18, some police might not follow through on your parent’s runaway report. However, that is not a guarantee. Another option is talking to your parents, which we could help facilitate through a conference call. We could be on the line with you and help advocate for you. It is totally okay if you don’t want to do this as well!

              Feel free to call us or email us anytime if you want to talk more. We are here 24/7, to listen and help.

          • Hi, I am 17 going to turn 18 in early January. So if I run away, a runaway status will be filed and will continue to stay active until I am of legal age? Will there be any negative record or penalty of running away that will reflect when searching for jobs and work? I live in Phoenix, Arizona and I plan on working while also as a runaway to stay away from a very troubling and negative tormentor verbally and restrictively.

            Comment


            • ccsmod7
              ccsmod7 commented
              Editing a comment
              Hello there, thanks for reaching out. Sounds like home is pretty verbally abusive and controlling so you are planning on running away for 2-3 months until you turn 18. You have a lot of great questions. Unfortunately, laws vary by state and police protocol can vary by jurisdiction and we are not legal experts, so we can only answer generally. You might be able to get more specific answers if you call your local non-emergency police number and speak anonymously to an officer.

              18 years old is the age in Arizona where you legally become an adult and can leave home without permission. Since you are close to turning 18, it is up to local police with whether they would take a runaway report for you or if they would return you home if found. Typically, once you turn 18 you cannot get in trouble for previously being a runaway since it is a status offense due to your age rather than being illegal. It typically would not go on your permanent record.

              If you do not currently have a job, one thing to keep in mind is that if you are listed as a runaway by your guardian, that is something that will come up on a background check if an employer asks for that.

              Thanks again for contacting us with these questions. Please call or chat us if you have additional questions or if you need any support during this difficult time. We truly want to help.

              Best,

              NRS

          • Hi im 17 going to 18 in april. Im sick of my family. I feel like they treat me like ********. And i have done wrong but they hold it over my head. I have friends that are 19 that are more than willing to take me in. What will happen if i decided to go? i work and would be able support myself.

            Comment


            • ccsmod6
              ccsmod6 commented
              Editing a comment
              Hi thanks for reaching out to us here at NRS! It sounds like you have a lot going on with your family and we are sorry to hear that. We are going to go over some general info since we aren’t legal experts but, if you have any other questions or want to talk about anything else, don’t hesitate to reach out over our online chat system or give us a call at 1-800-RUNAWAY.
              Firstly, you don’t deserve to be treated with any disrespect. We are sorry to hear that your family has done so and that is very frustrating. You talked about leaving home, and we can definitely talk about that. Running away isn’t illegal per say but, rather something called a status offense. Meaning if you leave home under the age of adulthood, usually 18 in most US states, that your parents/guardians are still legally responsible for you until you turn 18. If you do leave home at 17, your parents can file something called a runaway report meaning they let the police know you have left home. The police will then have the discretion to look for you and if they find you they will return you home. Some police departments do not take runaway reports for 17 year olds that are close to turning 18 but there is a risk that they will so that is something to think about. We can always reach out to your local non-emergency police and ask their policies on runaway reports if you feel comfortable giving us a call.
              You are always welcome to reach out to us as we are here 24/7. We can explore if leaving home is something you want to do or other legal options like emancipation, legal waiving of responsibility of a legal guardian/parents that does take some time and money. Please don’t hesitate to reach out because it seems like you have been through a lot and we really do care about you.
              Best, NRS

          • im 17 years old im now in mexico but left because i cut off my gps. If i stay till i turn 18 will i be able to go back to the U.S?

            Comment


            • when a runaway turns 18 do they have to turn their self in if they didn't get caught?

              Comment


              • ccsmod11
                ccsmod11 commented
                Editing a comment
                Thank you for reaching out to the National Runaway Safeline. We want you to know that we are here to support you in any way we can.

                We’re not legal experts here at NRS. But in most states, at 18 you are a legal adult, and you would not have to turn yourself in if you were previously reported as a runaway.

                If you haven’t already, you could consider reaching out to a trusted adult, relative, worker/teacher/counselor at your school for help and support. If you haven’t already, you could also consider talking with your parents or guardians about how you’ve been feeling or ask someone else to help you talk with them.

                There are also many resources that could help you find a safe place if you’re in need, help you talk through what you’ve been going through, or help you with anything else you may need. If you want to talk more about what’s been going on, or if you would like more information about resources, you can call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY (1-800-786-2929) or chat with us online.

                Again, thank you or contacting us. You’ve shown a lot of strength by reaching out for help. If you ever need anything in the future, please feel free to call us or chat with us online. We’re always here to listen and here to help.

            • Hey I’m currently 17 and turn 18 the first week of May . Dcf has been involved with my family for a long time cause of abuse I’ve reported i was taken out of my legal guardians house (my dad) just for a short amount of time on a safety plan where I was then placed with my grandparents then I went into a shelter cause I felt alone and ran away to the shelter I was there for a few weeks and now have been living with random friends or anyone until I turn 18 I want to move to st Pete with my boyfriend and his family of course not in the same house but with his family and I want to leave soon I just know my dads my guardian and will put out a missing persons report we have tried everything but we barely even talk but he still has a say in where I go it isn’t fair and I want to leave these peoples house ASAP

              Comment


              • ccsmod7
                ccsmod7 commented
                Editing a comment
                Hi,

                Thanks for reaching out! You do not deserve to be abused or feel unsafe and alone. It’s important that you have options, so let’s look at some.

                We are not legal experts at National Runaway Safeline, but we can talk generally about what happens when a runaway report is filed. Since you have left your guardian’s care, your dad has the option of filing a runaway report with the police department. This is not a criminal offense, it just means that they will do their best to find you and bring you home. If you are staying with a party over the age of 18, they are open to a misdemeanor of harboring a runaway.

                Some police departments will not take a runaway report for 17 year olds because they are close to being on their own, and you are 6 months away, so this might apply to you. You can find this out by calling your local police department’s non-emergency number and asking generally what their policy is around taking runaway reports for a 17 year old. Another option is to call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY and we can call together to find out their policy.

                There are programs through shelters for longer stay which help you get on your feet, these transitional living programs offer various services that might be helpful for you. For a list of transitional living programs in your area give us a call or chat.

                You mentioned having a case open with DCF, do you feel comfortable talking to your case worker? It is their job to ensure your safety and well-being, however we understand sometimes there are other factors involved. If you feel comfortable discussing your situation with them, we encourage you to reach out and see if they have any options. If you would like support around talking to them or anyone else in your life, give us a call and we can call together to support you.

                Again we’re really glad that you reached out to us. It takes a lot to ask for help and you are trying to figure out your options which is really good to see. If you would like to talk further about your situation, please do not hesitate to call or chat with us.

                We’re here to listen, here to help.

            • Okay hello my boyfriend ran months ago and been on the run staying with me for months but he been living with me since we met in my birthday and that was in October and now they sent him to a dentition facility in Iowa for juveniles and I am his girlfriend and he acts and looks grown but he only 16 but when we was talking he told me he was older but that's not the point I'm only 17 so we still together you know and he had court and they said he waived his hearing and they have him there and he had some charges but one had them had been dropped before he ran but typically it said 12 days average person stays in there and I feel like it's gonna be like a few weeeks but then I feel like it's going to be longer he hasn't called me yet but there is this process called the 3-7day process where we gets to basically call who he needs to call and stuff and they know I have contact with other his mom but she's all the way in Chicago and his aunt had him in her care for awhile now but she always kicked him out and threatened him and hit him all the time and I'm trying I figure out because I am pregannt with his child and I don't know what I'm supposed to do without him and I'm trying to get as much information as possible and I read like hella pages on the interen t and seen this and was hoping u could maybe help? I really miss him and want him to come back me and my mom have been giving him a place to stay but he acts really grown and he's always kinda been by himself so he does have a criminal record but yeah his court was yesterday and he's in a detention just in the a little further out and it's still in town tho just across town and I don't know if he just gonna have to serve days there for running or they will send him some place else ? Do u know like cause he is pretty good at playing his cards right in the facilities his birthday is January and he gonna be 17 and I'm worried about him being locked up with girls and stuff and his aunt don't like me there's just so many problems I need help with like i just want him to come back home. My home is his home but like I said his aunt is crazy and he's grown enough to actually make his own choices but I don't want him to have to be in there for along time like he hasn't been getting in trouble when he been staying with me ******** was ******** like we were doing so good together and nobody cares or understands and I'm tired of crying cause I need him here with me and he wants to live back with his mom like we even went up there and seen her together like my mom is like his mom and he didn't have nobody cause his aunt would just put him out all the time smh like idk I'm trying to see where they could just send him to the place he turned himself into the other day like will they keep him there or will they let him come back
              Last edited by ccsmod10; 12-12-2017, 04:46 PM.

              Comment


              • ccsmod16
                ccsmod16 commented
                Editing a comment
                Hello, thanks for reaching out. It sounds like you care about your boyfriend quite a lot. He is lucky to have such a loving and supportive girlfriend after having been through such a hard life especially!
                It is not illegal to runaway so it may be that your boyfriend has other charges. It is great that he has been able to stay with you and your mom, however, be aware that if his guardian (maybe his aunt?) has filed a runaway report on him, that means any adult (like your mom) that is allowing him to stay with them is at risk for being charged with the crime of harboring a runaway if his guardian wants to pursue that criminal charge.
                Since you mentioned your boyfriend has been abused by his aunt, you all have the right to report that. We can help with that if he calls us when he is out of juvenile detention or he can do it by reporting to someone at the facility he is at or calling the local child protective services. Child Help has a lot of information on child abuse, how to report, and getting custody transferred to a safe adult (perhaps your mom). You can reach them at 1-800-422-4453, childhelp.org.
                Thank you for being so supportive of your boyfriend at such a difficult time. Best of luck with his charges and with your pregnancy! Feel free to call us anytime or have your boyfriend call us. We are open 24/7 every day of the year and also on our website on live chat 4-11pm CT every day. Call us anytime and make sure to take care of yourself through all of this! 1-800-786-2929
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