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Running Away At 18 + Legality Questions

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  • #16
    i am 18 and I am bord different then other people my parents are being mean to me every time when they are being mean to me I feel like I want to run away and never return they make me cry and I just want to be adupted and have to parents who are nice to me and won't make me cry everytime when they make me cry I run to my room and never come out I just wish I never had my parents I sometimes wish I was dead but people does not want me dead but living here with my parets I want to runaway and be adupted or I don't know I just wish I hade to parents or be somewhere els b eisde ehre with my mean mom and dad

    Comment


    • ccsmod10
      ccsmod10 commented
      Editing a comment
      Hey there,

      Thanks so much for reaching out to the National Runaway Safeline. We’re sorry to hear that you’re having such a difficult time with your parents. It can’t be easy being emotionally abused in your own home. You’re not alone in this. We’ll give you some ideas to consider below, but know that you can always reach out to one of our live liners by calling 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929).

      First, in most parts of the United States, individuals who are 18 years old are considered legal adults. As such, they are free to leave home and live wherever they choose without their legal guardians’ permission. Your parents could not force you to return, the police would not look for you, and it would not be against the law in any way. You can call one of our liners or your local police department to confirm that your state recognizes you as a legal adult.

      You said that you’ve been feeling depressed and sometimes think about suicide. Have you talked to anyone about how you feel? If you continue to have similar feelings, you may want to consider calling National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK; they are a great resource and have counselors who specialize in this area available 24 hours whenever you need to talk to them.
      There may be other alternative housing options available to you if you feel you need to leave, such as a runaway youth shelter or transitional housing that helps youth get on their feet. We have a database of resources that we could search to help you explore those options if you like. If you find you need something immediately, we’re always here to find emergency shelters in your area. Don’t hesitate to give us a call.

      Leaving home is a really big step, especially if you’re leaving a difficult or unhealthy home environment. Being sure that you have a plan to stay safe long-term, and confirming that you are a legal adult in your state and county .Again, our liners are available 24/7 at 1-800-RUNAWAY. Please give us a call if you’d like to talk through your plan in greater detail. Good luck!

      Best wishes,
      NRS

  • #17
    Hi,

    I'm currently 17, but I'm planning to runaway when I turn 18. I have problems with my mother because of what she had done to me and my family in the past. I was wondering if I could legally keep my phone if my parents bought it or if I would have to pay for a new one. I have all my contacts and stuff on here so if there is any way to legally keep the data on there I would like to know. Also how would my health insurance and dental stuff work if I left?

    Comment


    • ccsmod6
      ccsmod6 commented
      Editing a comment
      Hello thank you for contacting the National Runaway Safeline. We are sorry to hear about your situation. We are here to listen and will do all we can to help.
      It seems like you are planning to legally leave home at 18 and have some questions about trying to keep your belongings that are in your parents’ name. We are not legal experts but if your phone was purchased by your parents they may have all the rights to the device. They probably would be able to keep your phone if they chose to do so when you leave. Possibly trying to get your own phone may be beneficial in making sure you have a means of communication when you leave. Also, as far as we are able to tell the insurance would probably go the same. Usually, your parents would have the choice to keep you insured or not at any time. We could try to look for some of those resources together if you call in to our hotline at 1800-RUNAWAY. If you have concerns about what to do for medical/dental insurance, it may be beneficial to look into government funded insurance policies if money is an issue or to call out to your preferred insurance agency and ask questions about how you would be able to enroll. We are happy to see that you are trying to remain healthy and are taking the steps and doing to research to take care of yourself.
      Again, we really appreciate you reaching out to us. We are a confidential agency that are open 24/7, and are toll free. For further questions or assistance please feel free to contact us on our hotline at 1800-RUNAWAY or chat with us at 1800-RUNAWAY.ORG.

  • #18
    Hi, i just want to know if i can leave my parents house at 18 years old ?

    Comment


    • #19
      Reply:Hi, i just want to know....

      Hello,
      Thank you for writing to us here at 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.

      For more specifics on the law, you might consider contacting the local non-emergency phone number to the police or a legal aid agency or office to gain answers for legal questions.
      If you would like to talk more about your situation contact us at 1-800- Runaway (786-2929) or www.1800Runaway.org

      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


      • #20
        Hi, I’m planning on moving out of my parents house when I turn 18. That is two months away. I already had talked to my parents about moving out. They didn’t like that idea. They told me that I couldn’t take anything that they had purchased for me.
        Are they legally allowed to keep my belongings away from me??
        Could they report me for theft if I did take my belongings??

        Comment


        • #21
          Hi, I’m planning on moving out at 18. That is 2 months away. I informed my parents that I was moving out. They didn’t like that. And they didn’t understand why I am doing this. I can’t take the mental and emotional abuse anymore. They threatened me by saying they wouldn’t let me take anything that they had bought me if I left.
          Are they legally allowed to keep me from my belongings??
          Could they report me for theft if I did take my belongings??

          Comment


          • ccsmod6
            ccsmod6 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hello and thank you for contacting the National Runaway Safeline. It is great that you are taking the initiative in your own life and we would like to assist you in any way we can. We are sorry to hear that your parents are not enthusiastic about your plans for independent growth. We are not legal experts, but it does seem likely that if your parents paid for the items, they are legally allowed to keep them from you and they may be able to report you for theft if you did. A good place to ask for a definite answer would be your local police non-emergency number. If you had any other questions or needed any help doing so, please do not hesitate to reach out to us on our 24/7 hotline 1-800-RUNAWAY or on chat at 1800runaway.org.

        • #22
          i live at home. im 17 but am about to turn 18 november 24. i have a boyfriend who they disapprove of. They said if im still dating him that they will call the cops on him. My question is that am i legally allowed to move out on the day of my 18th brthday and if i am/do can they still call the cops on him trying to make him stay away from me?

          Comment


          • ccsmod9
            ccsmod9 commented
            Editing a comment
            Thanks for reaching out to us here at NRS. We know that it takes a lot to reach out and seek help. Our hope is to provide you with tips and resources in order to make the best decision available to you.
            Though we aren’t legal experts from what we can gather from your story is that you have been put in a very stressful situation and we are sorry to hear that. As far as you turning 18 you are legally able to move out without anyone questioning you about it. Your parents can no longer call the cops or do anything against you. In fact you can call the cops and have them help you escorted out of their house if you so please.
            We commend you on your bravery for reaching out and contacting us. If for any reason you have more questions or concerns you can feel free to contact us at (1-800-786-2929) or online through our chat option (www.1800runaway.org).
            Best Wishes- NRS

        • #23
          My moms saying I can’t leave the house when I turn 18 Bc I’m still in school... can she really stop me from leaving just Bc I’m still in school???

          Comment


          • #24
            Reply: My moms saying I can’t leave


            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. Once you are 18 you are more than likely considered a legal adult which means that you can move out if you want to and you won’t be considered a runaway. As a legal adult, you have a right to make your own decisions about where you live. For more specifics on the law, you might consider contacting the local non-emergency number for the police. This number can be found online.
            What will you do if you move out of your parent’s home?
            We can help you make a plan for how to deal with your situation and help you find resources to land on your feet. Having a plan for where you will live and how you will survive once you move out can be very helpful. Moving can be a huge step, and you don’t have to be alone. Some steps you can take towards independence might be to find employment if you don’t have an income, or to save up money for moving expenses. It can also be helpful to research rents in your area, find a roommate, or make a budget. Another thing you might want to consider is what kinds of things you depend on your parents for currently such as any present and future expenses for school, or health insurance. It’s probably important to know if they would continue to provide these things after you leave. There may be social service agencies in your area that can help meet some of these needs, such as Transitional Living Programs, a kind of shelter where young adults can live and get services to help them transition to independent living.

            We are here to listen and help however we can.
            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).

            Take care,
            NRS
            We hope this response was helpful! We’d love to hear from you about your experience using our crisis email/forum. Your feedback plays an important role in helping us improve our services to youth and families. Please click the link to fill out our survey: Your Opinion Matters to Us
            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


            • #25
              I am coming from an abusive home situation and I am trying to figure out what I can legally bring with me. My parents are very controlling, but with the assistance of counselors at school I have managed to be admitted to college. My parents frequently threaten to take me out of school in order to prevent me from graduating, but since they put me in a private school I am unsure whether they would actually let them withdraw me close to the end of the year or after I turn 18. I was wondering if bringing my laptop specifically would legally be considered stealing. My grandparents are the ones that bought it for me, but I don't know if they still have the receipts easily accessible. Also, this isn't quite the right thread for this question but I was hoping you would answer anyways. My parents are attempting to force me to join the military. I know as a last ditch effort I could intentionally bomb the test you have to take, but I would prefer to avoid that as my parents would probably see the score and lose their minds, which could screw up the plans I have in place. I am hoping to be able to get the recruiter alone (which you can do, it is just that you have the option of having your parents there but mine won't give me a chance to ask), and ask for help delaying parts of the process until I am essentially graduated and can leave home without risking losing my diploma. Is there any advice on how to convince them to help? The problem is, my situation should probably have been resolved by DFACS a long time ago, and they have been called twice, but both times my sister and I have had to pretend everything is fine. A lot of people don't understand and just tell us to call DFACS, but it isn't that simple. There are some people who give that as their only advice, and honestly, they would have to lie to help me. The recruitment process can technically go really fast, but signing the contract is one of the last things you do, so if there is enough space in between each step I might be able to get away before they make me sign it. Side note- Does messing up your signature, like signing my name extremely wrong void it?

              Comment


              • #26
                Thanks for reaching out to NRS. It seems like you have been doing your best to work through a really difficult situation at home.

                Getting accepted to college takes a lot of hard work and it is really great you were able to work toward this goal. It is understandable you do not want to try reaching out to DFACS again since they have not been much help in the past. You mentioned being concerned about your parents preventing you from graduating, but once you turn 18 you are a legal adult and can make your own decisions. If there are any teachers are guidance counselors you feel comfortable with, you could talk with them about options for staying in school and graduating. You could consider online school or getting your GED if your parents try to intervene before you turn 18. We are not legal experts so we cannot give absolute answers to some of your legal questions. You can try calling your local police department and ask if there would be any legal issues regarding your lap top. It is unfair that your parents are trying to force you to join the military. If you are able to talk to a recruiter alone, you can tell them about your situation and that you do not want to join the military. If you think it would help, we can offer to conference call with your parents and advocate for your needs.

                If you called NRS at 1-800-786-2929 we could find legal aid resources for you if you had more legal questions you were concerned about.

                We are here 24/7 to help!
                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


                • #27
                  I'm 18, soon 19 in March. I plan on running away from my mentally abusive parents to live with my boyfriend (soon to be 20). Every time I ask to do something on my own (get my own phone bill, get an apartment, build my credit) they get verbally aggressive and throw things in my face like "oh, you can't keep your room clean," "you can't even save," "you have it made here," and their favorite, "you're just spending money on useless stuff when we pay for it already." I don't quite understand why they say these things to stop me, but now, I don't know anything about being adult except filling out a tax form. Not only that, my mom has been threatening to take my door down and my electronics (ps4, laptop, etc.) and to break my phone more and more often. She also accuses me of lying, always giving attitude, and always saying rude comments. We've almost gotten into physical fights and recently, she made me walk to work (I just started this job) which was an hour away (walking distance) through ghetto neighborhoods without my phone she took away the night before... I was half an hour late.
                  I'm sick and tired of the constant fighting between us and not being able to be myself without being accused of having an attitude or some "b*tch face." At this point, it's between leaving a runaway note or a suicide note... so, I have brought my ticket for April and am planning on taking my cat to live with my boyfriend. What I want to know is:
                  Will I get in trouble for taking my cat?
                  Will I get in trouble for leaving in the middle of the night?
                  Should I write a note for them to wake up to?
                  How would I write it, without making them angrier?
                  and lastly, what do I do if they try to guilt trick me to going back home? I don't want to be here anymore.

                  Comment


                  • ccsmod2
                    ccsmod2 commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Hi there, we are more than happy to answer your questions and concerns. It seems like you have quite a few things to consider and have gone through some difficult things with your mother. It must be hard to go through what you have with her and it is understandable to feel tired of it. Just so you know, if the legal adult age in your state is 18, you do not have to have any permission to leave the home with your boyfriend and will not get in any trouble. If the cat is yours, you are able to take it with you. If you are travelling by plane or train, however, you cannot take the cat on there with you at most airlines. Airlines or trains that will allow require an extra fee so, it may be best to contact where you bought your ticket to make sure. Again, if you are of legal age, you will not get in trouble for leaving- no matter what time it is. It is ultimately your decision to leave a note for your mother/parents. It may be beneficial to do so that they are aware that you left by choice and are okay. It is also your decision of what you would want to say in the letter. It may be beneficial to assure them you are safe and the reasons you chose to leave. If your parents guilt you to come back home, keep in mind you are able to make your own decision and the decisions that are best for you and your wellness. If you are legally an adult, you do not have to return anywhere you do not want to. We hope that your questions have been answered. Please, feel free to contact us at any time if you have any more questions, concerns, or assistance. You can give us a call at 1800-RUNAWAY and chat with us live or send an email by visiting our website 1800runaway.org. Best of luck.

                • #28
                  Hello, I will be 18 soon and I was wondering is I could just leave my house and move away and not have them call the police or stop me from leaving. I currently live with my aunt in michigan and my father live farther away but we still keep contact. I got left back one year in high school so I am currently a junior and will be a senior next year. If I wanted to move away once i’m 18 and move from my current highschool to another could I do so myself? Or would they need my parents/guardians permission to be able to switch schools or stop me from changing my school.

                  Comment


                  • ccsmod8
                    ccsmod8 commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Hello there –

                    Thank you so much for taking the time out of your day to reach out to us here on our public forum. We are always here to listen and here to help in any way that we can. It can be very frustrating not knowing what to do or what your next step might be from this point on. Hopefully we can help you out during your time of need.
                    Like you have probably read in the countless post before yours, if you are below the legal age of majority your parents would be able to make a runaway report in the event that you do run away. In most states, if you are 18 years old or older, you are considered an adult. Now considering the information above, since you are planning on leaving once you turn 18 years old you would be considered an adult and free to leave without permission.

                    As far as school goes, we aren’t experts by any means but it is to our understanding that an 18 year old can enroll themselves into a school of their choosing as long as the school accepts their application. You might want to reach out to the school that you have in mind, as well as your current school to figure out how the process of transferring school documents will work and what you have to do. That is the only way to know for sure if you can or cannot do it alone.

                    We hope that helps!

                • #29
                  Does moving in with sibling and leave your parents considered running away.

                  Comment


                  • ccsmod6
                    ccsmod6 commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Thank you for contacting the National Runaway Safeline. While we are not legal experts, we do have experience with and general information about running away. If you are a minor, your parents have a legal obligation to take care of you and a part of that means that they decide where you live. If you decide to live anywhere else without their consent, they are entitled to file a runaway report with the police. If police encountered you while there was a runaway report, they would be allowed to notify your guardian and in most cases send you home. In short, from our understanding we would think that it would still be considered running away.

                    If you want to share more about what is going on, we would be happy to work out the specifics of your situation with you. If you are interested in doing so, please reach out to us on our 24/7 hotline 1-800-786-2929 or on chat at 1800runaway.org.

                    Take care,
                    NRS

                • #30
                  Im gonna be turning 18 and i dont want to live with my parents anymore cause they dont appreciate me . So i was wondering what do i need from them idk what im supposed to get when i leave, i need all the info im supposed to have cause when i leave my parents i want to leave them forever, so will you please tell me what i need when i turn 18, thank you.

                  Comment


                  • ccsmod7
                    ccsmod7 commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Hi there, thanks for reaching out today. Sounds like you are feeling unappreciated at home and are wanting to leave once you turn 18. That sounds pretty tough to deal with, and here at NRS we want to be a support for you.

                    So generally when you are 18, you are considered a legal adult and you have the right to make your own life decisions including where you live. You might double check and make sure the majority age in your state is 18, so you can leave without the risk of being reported as a runaway. Sounds like you might need to plan for where you will go and how you will survive once you move out. If you haven't already you might try to gain some employment and income and save up to be able to rent out your own place. You might also think about how you will provide for yourself, especially if your parents have been providing most things for you such as: food, transportation, medical care, and anything else you might need. If you are planning on continuing your education, you might also consider what you would need to be able to do that without any support. If you are unable to afford your own place, you might ask friends and extended family members about staying with them. If you call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY or www.1800runaway.org we can look to see if there are any shelter or transitional living program resources in your area if you need.

                    Please do not hesitate to call or chat us if you would like to talk through your plan for moving out. We are always here for you.

                    Best,

                    NRS
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