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Move out without parental consent at 17?

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  • Move out without parental consent at 17?

    Hi, I was wondering if it is legal to move out at 17 years of age without parental consent in Missouri. I am 17 and girlfriend is about to turn 17 as well. We have talked about her moving out of her house and in with my family and I. My mother loves the idea, because she adores my girlfriend to pieces. There are multiple reasons why we want her to move in with us. Including the fact that her family is very unsupportive, and me being a teenager as well, I know personally that teens need strong support from their family as they brace against high school, jobs, and prepare for their life. Her parents continuously put her down, use her for their own personal chores (doing the whole families laundry, etc.)... Her parents even go as far as doing almost anything to weasel money out of her and steal it from her bank account (they have a merged account) when they don't get it. Her father constantly yells at her and makes her feel worthless. I cannot count how many times I've had to get her to stop crying and calm down. Her family doesn't even so much as buy her school supplies, clothes, backpacks, or anything she needs. My mom had to buy it all for her. My mother knows of everything going on at her house, and we both think she would be much better off moving into a supportive environment with a loving family. However, her family would never agree to let her leave. Would it be illegal for her to leave on her own without permission when she is 17?

  • #2
    RE: Moving out with parenta consent at 17?


    Thank you for reaching out to us on behalf of your girlfriend. It sounds like you care a lot about her and want to make sure she is in a safe and loving place. She does have the right to feel safe and wanted wherever she is. Just to let you know we are not legal experts. Although it is technically not against the law for her to leave her home and live with someone else, there is a catch. Anyone she would be caught staying with against her legal guardian’s permission could possibly be charged with ‘harboring a runaway’. Are you willing to take this risk for her? If not, she may have other options. Each state has different laws so it’s best to check with your local law enforcement what may happen.

    Emancipation is another option for her to legally leaving the room before she turns 18. Sometimes this can be a lengthy process and take time and money.

    Here at the National Runaway Safeline, we cannot tell you what you should or should not do. We can however help you explore options and come up with a solid plan for what to do next. We can be reached at any time at 1-800-RUNAWAY(786-2929) or by live chat at from 4:30pm-11:30pm Central Standard Time. We wish you both the best of luck and hope to hear from you soon.

    - 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
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