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17 year old runaway turning 18

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  • Hi im 17 and will be 18 in a little less then 5 months im graduating in a month and mentally i cant handle being at hone anymore its just getting ti me to much and its a hostile invironment for me .. Theres always confirtation with me and my dad cause of littke stuff and i was wandering if i would go to jail or get in legal trouble if i left home after i graduate

    Comment


    • Hi there, and thank you so much for reaching out to National Runaway Safeline. You’ve taken a great first step by reaching out to us for help for your situation. It sounds like your home environment has become unmanageable and that you’re experiencing hardship with your dad, sometimes over things that seem small or don’t warrant confrontation. It is not illegal for you to leave home at 17, and you will not get into legal trouble or go to jail if you decide to do this. Running away as a minor is considered a “status offense”, which means that your dad/guardian may or may not decide to file a runaway report. If this happens, it is possible that the police will try to find you and reunite you with your guardian. We encourage you to call our hotline or chat with us online so that we can further discuss your situation and make a plan. Our hotline number is 1-800-RUNAWAY, and our website is www.1800runaway.org.
      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


      • Hi i need help on what to do my girlfreind parents are very abusive and treat her like a maid they do anything for there son but not for here and at the moment the parents are suppouse to be in mexico and there here in the us she wants to leave her house now but she turns 18 in September what can i do

        Comment


        • ccsmod9
          ccsmod9 commented
          Editing a comment
          Hi there,
          Thank you for writing to us here at National Runaway Safeline (NRS). We understand it takes great courage to reach out, and we appreciate you sharing a little bit about what’s going on. We want you to know that we are here as support to help you through this challenging time. We can best help by phone or chat as NRS is unable to respond more than twice by email or bulletin for assistance. If you would like to talk more in detail and share more about how we can help specifically, please call or chat soon.
          Our contact information is 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929); www.1800runaway.org (click on the chat button).
          If you are at risk of any danger or feeling unsafe, we encourage you to reach out to 911 or seek emergency assistance immediately.
          We hope to hear from you soon.
          Be safe, NRS

      • Hey, I'm 17 turning 18 in 4 months. I've been a runaway for a month now, and I need to know a few things about when I turn 18. I live with my boyfriend, who is 21, and feel really bad about him paying for everything. He drove me from Mississippi to Alabama to live with him. When I turn 18, will they still be able to punish me or my boyfriend? When I turn 18, will I be able to acquire legal documentation to be able to apply for a job?

        Comment


        • ccsmod9
          ccsmod9 commented
          Editing a comment
          Hi there,
          Thank you for writing to us here at National Runaway Safeline (NRS). We understand it takes great courage to reach out, and we appreciate you sharing a little bit about what’s going on. We want you to know that we are here as support to help you through this challenging time. From what we gather about your situation as long as when you left home your boyfriend wasn’t charged with anything it means he cannot be charged with anything now. As far as documentation goes the minute you turn 18 you can request your documents no problem. If you would like to talk more in detail and share more about how we can help specifically, please call or chat soon.
          Our contact information is 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929); www.1800runaway.org (click on the chat button).
          If you are at risk of any danger or feeling unsafe, we encourage you to reach out to 911 or seek emergency assistance immediately.
          We hope to hear from you soon.
          Be safe, NRS

      • Hi my son is 17 he is going to be 18 next week and he ran away from foster care at 16 he just called me and ask me to see if I can find out what will happen when he terns 18 he said he is going to go to the police station on his birth day and tern his self in To get released from the ward of the state because he was in foster care he wants to know if he will go to jail or if thay will just give him paperwork to get released from foster care he just wants to know if he is going to go to jail and how long he will be in jail

        Comment


        • ccsmod1
          ccsmod1 commented
          Editing a comment
          Hey there,

          Thanks so much for reaching out to us and sharing a little bit about what's been going on. We know that it takes a lot of courage. Running away is considered a status offense, which means that it isn't illegal per se, but something that can't be done by minors (like smoking). We aren't legal experts here at NRS, but your son should not be in any legal trouble because he ran away. If he is interested in fully removing himself from the foster care system he can contact his local Department of Human Services office. If he would like to contact us directly to go over what’s going on in depth, or to explore other options that may be available to him, he can call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY. He can also chat us by clicking on the “CHAT” button on top of our homepage. We’re open 24/7 and here to listen and support in any way we can.

          All the best,
          NRS

      • If I'm 17 and reported as a runaway n my birthday is coming up soon when I turn 18 will it be lifted

        Comment


        • ccsmod15
          ccsmod15 commented
          Editing a comment
          Hello,

          Thanks for reaching out to us. It sounds like you’ve got questions about what will happen to a runaway report if you become a legal adult while outside of the home of your parents or legal guardians. You’re asking a great question, and although we’re not legal experts, from what we understand, cancelling, or “lifting” the runaway report on you depends on the protocol that your local police department follows. There is a possibility that the report might be considered void if you become a legal adult; along the same lines, you may have to call them and let them know so that the local police cancel/void/lift the report. The best way to find out whether you need to do anything or if it would just become nullified due to your age is to reach out to your local police department at their non-emergency number and ask. If you don’t know how to find that number, feel free to give us a call and we can help you find that information, as well as help you make the call if you’d like.

          Whatever you decide, know that we are here for you. We won’t tell you what to do, but we will do our best to help you stay safe with whatever you decide to do. You can reach out to us 24/7 by phone at 800.RUNAWAY (786.2929). We are also available every day via chat. We’re here to listen, here to help. Stay safe!

          -NRS

      • If I'm 17 n my parents kick me out and them 3 days later report me as a run away and im turning 18 in a couple of days n I graduated already im I still counted as a runaway when I turn 18

        Comment


        • ccsmod15
          ccsmod15 commented
          Editing a comment
          Hello,

          Thanks again for reaching out to us. You’ve asked a great follow-up question regarding whether the circumstances of your leaving would make a difference in classifying you as a runaway when you turn 18. As we discussed in the previous reply, all of these circumstances depend on the laws in your state, and how your specific police department handles runaway reports.

          We’re not legal experts, but with your parents kicking you out, one possible recourse you had was to let police know the day that they kicked you out that you were “locked out” of the home; in other words, that your legal guardians were refusing to house you. With that said, it is possible that your legal guardians can file a runaway report right until the day you turn 18 if your state allows this. Your local police department can give you more detailed information on how runaway reports work, whether they take them in these specific circumstances, and when you might be considered a legal adult, therefore making the runaway report a non-issue. The process to call and cancel a runaway report may or may not be automatic depending on your state laws and how your local police chooses to handle these reports.

          If you need help finding your local police department’s non-emergency number, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. You can reach out to us 24/7 by phone at 800.RUNAWAY (786.2929). We are also available every day via chat. We’re here to listen, here to help. Stay safe!

          -NRS

      • I turning 17 and my parents take it too far when they are upset at me by hitting me and I want to leave to another city and start my life and when my girlfriend gets emancipated live together, my questions are what’s the risk of running away and after I turn 18 will the runaway file still be on my record , and if my girlfriend can get in trouble for staying with me after she gets emancipated I live in Texas

        Comment


        • ccsmod7
          ccsmod7 commented
          Editing a comment
          Thank you for contacting the National Runaway Safeline. We are sorry to hear about what you’re experiencing. You don’t deserve to be hit by your parents.

          We want you to know that you have a right to keep yourself safe. If your parents start hitting you again, you do have the right to remove yourself from that situation. You can leave your house or call the police. We’d also like you to know that abuse reporting is an option. It might seem like a scary choice, but it’s another way to possibly keep yourself safe. If you ever want more information on filing an abuse report, please feel free to call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY. We can walk you through the process so you can figure out if it’s the right option for you.

          We’re not legal experts here, but we can speak in generalities – running away is a status offense, which means basically means it’s not a crime you’d be charged with but you still aren’t allowed to do it because of your age. If your parents were to file a runaway report and the police were to pick you up, they would most likely just return you home. However, anybody that you stay with if you do runaway could possibly be charge with harboring a runaway and could be prosecuted.

          But generally speaking, status offenses are dropped from someone’s record when they turn 18, but again we are not legal experts. And every state has different laws about timelines for removing status offenses. You might want to visit or call your local police department to see what their procedure is.

          Again, thank you for reaching out to us. We are so sorry you are going through this and we wish you the best. Don’t hesitate to call us if you need more help or resources.

      • Can I get in trouble for running away five days before my actual 18th birthday. I live in Tennessee.

        Comment


        • ccsmod15
          ccsmod15 commented
          Editing a comment
          Thanks for reaching out to NRS. It’s great that you’re researching all your options before making your next move. Although we’re not legal experts, technically you’re still a minor in TN before you turn 18 and would be considered a runaway. That just means the police have the right to bring you home. However, since you’re so close to 18, the police may not follow up on a runaway report given your age. If you feel comfortable, one idea is to call the non-emergency number of your local police department and asking them how they’d respond to a runaway report for a 17yo who is less than a week away from turning 18.
          Something else to keep in mind is that the neighboring states of Mississippi and Alabama have higher ages of majority than TN (21 and 19, respectively) so if you’re planning to head to one of those states, you may still be considered a runaway even if you’re 18.
          If you’d like to talk more about your situation, brainstorm some options, or find resources like shelters, we are here for you 24/7 at 1-800-286-2929.

      • Im 17 Turning 18 in 14 days can I get into trouble if I runaway now ?

        Comment


        • ccsmod7
          ccsmod7 commented
          Editing a comment
          Hi there, thanks for reaching out.

          Sounds like you are in a tricky situation trying to move out 2 weeks before turning an 18.

          Generally speaking, your guardians can attempt to report you as a runaway with local police. It is up to local police with whether or not they would accept the report. If they do accept the report they might take less action due to your age, like they might not actively look for you. If they are able to list you as a runaway and you turn 18 without being returned home, you can generally call your local police at that time and be taken off the runaway list.

          We hope this information is helpful. Please call or chat us if you would like to talk more or if you would like help calling out to your local police. 1-800-RUNAWAY; www.180runaway.org.

          Best,

          NRS

      • Moving out/looking for a place to live at 17
        So i turn 18 in a month and a half (its July and my birthday is august 16), and I've repeatedly been told "you have until august 16 to find a place to live" and "get up and start working on a place to go" will I get in trouble for leaving having been told these things? I have pictures and screenshots of it all if that helps my case any.
        I want to move out asap due to never being able to leave besides work and i constantly get in trouble for things I haven't done. and i often only eat once a day due to strict time allowances for eating times and not knowing when i can leave my room. they refuse to physically talk to me, it's always in form of letter or texts and i just can't do it anymore.

        Comment


        • ccsmod15
          ccsmod15 commented
          Editing a comment
          Hi there, thanks for reaching out! It sounds like you are living in a really stressful environment and are looking to leave as soon as you can. We are not legal experts, but the age of adulthood in most states in 18, so your parents can ask you to leave at that age and you can legally leave without getting into trouble.

          As far as leaving before 18, that could be trickier depending on the local police. Your parents could potentially file a runaway report which let's the police know you are gone. You may consider whether or not they would do that, since it sounds like they are asking you to leave soon anyway. If they do, some police take the report and some don't since you are so close to 18. You can call your local police and ask anonymously how they handle runaway reports. Find the local emergency number here:https://www.usacops.com/

          We can also help you figure out a safe place to stay so if you need information on shelters or additional services, please reach out via phone or live chat and we can help you directly! We are 24/7 at 1-800-786-2929 and at our live chat at the top of this website,

          Thanks again for posting and best of luck!

      • I’m 17 and I left to go hangout with a friend one night and went to school the next morning and my parents flipped out and had me arrested as a runaway at school and wanted to say I was with my ex-boyfriend who is 20 and his sister who is 18 is one of my close friends and I still hang out with her what should I expect in court.
        Last edited by ccsmod4; 09-17-2019, 01:48 AM.

        Comment


        • I’m 17 and I left to go hangout with a friend...

          Hello,
          Thank you for writing to us here at the National Runaway Safeline.

          We understand it takes great courage to reach out, and we appreciate you sharing a little bit about what’s going on. We are not legal experts so we can only speak in general. Once a report is filed with the police, a runaway may be detained and returned home to their parent or guardian. Running away is not considered a criminal act but a status offense with the report being removed once the runaway is recovered.
          However you should note that anyone considered to be aiding or harboring someone that has been reported as a runaway could face legal charges.
          You may get more information about the runaway laws in your state by contacting the non-emergency number to your local police department.
          Hours are most likely normal business hours 9am-to 5pm.
          You can usually find the non-emergency number online.

          NRS is here to listen and here to help.
          We can best help by phone or chat as NRS is unable to respond more than twice by email or bulletin for assistance. If you would like to talk more in detail and share more about how we can help specifically, 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’ve been a runaway for over a year now. My 18th birthday is in a couple of months and I was wondering what happens when I turn 18. Can I call my parents and tell them I’m fine and move on with my life? Is there any consequences for running away after I’m 18?

            Comment


            • ccsmod13
              ccsmod13 commented
              Editing a comment
              Hi there,

              Thanks for reaching out to NRS. You asked some really great questions. Although we are not legal experts, we can share some general information with you about runaway laws. Running away is not illegal, so you have not committed a crime by leaving home before you turn 18. Once you are 18 you are no longer considered a runaway. If you call your parents to let them know that you are safe, there would not be any consequences. It might also be a good idea to check in with them to ask if they reported you as a runaway and if yes, ask if they can call the police department to notify them that you are no longer a runaway.

              Do not hesitate to reach out anytime (800-786-2929 ; 1800runaway.org) if you have any other questions or concerns.

              Be safe,
              NRS

          • Do cops stop looking after you turn 18?

            Comment


            • ccsmod1
              ccsmod1 commented
              Editing a comment
              Hey there,

              Thanks for reaching out, we know that it takes a lot of bravery to do so. We aren’t legal experts here at NRS, but generally speaking, if you do opt to leave your home your parents (or whoever is your guardian) can file a runaway report, which is essentially a missing person report. Running away is a status offense; this means that it isn’t illegal, but it’s something you can’t do while still a minor (in the majority of states that's anyone under the age of 1. If a runaway report is filed and you are located by the authorities you will most likely be returned home. If you are already a legal adult and you choose to leave home someone can contact the authorities and request a wellness check. If a wellness check is requested then a police officer would check to ensure that you are not in any immediate danger and then leave you alone.

              If you’d like to go over what’s going on in depth, or if you’d like to explore other options that you may have available to you, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY. You can also chat us by clicking on the “CHAT” button on top of our homepage. We’re open 24/7 and here to listen and support you in any way we can.

              Stay safe,
              NRS
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