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Possibly emancipation or runaway

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  • Possibly emancipation or runaway

    I am currently 15 and turning 16 in 4 months and I want to live with my friend and her family, so I can continue to my education here in California, while my parents move back to Arizona but my parents won't allow me to. Is there any way around it?

  • #2
    re: Possibly emancipation or runaway

    Hi there,

    Thank you for reaching out to us and letting us offer you some guidance through this confusing situation. We want you to know that we are here to support you the best we can and that it takes a lot of courage to consider these options.
    Although we are not legal experts, we can try our best to give you some ideas regarding what to do in this situation. If you are considering staying in California without your parents’ approval, you could be considered a runaway. This basically means that your parents have the right to make a runaway report and if you were to be located, you would be returned home. Although running away is a status offense and not exactly illegal, the police would have to bring you back home given that you are under the age of 18.

    Something to think about is the reason why your parents may not be supportive of your decision to stay in California. Thinking about these things may help you find a more beneficial and constructive way for them to hear you out and possibly get them to see your perspective on things.

    Emancipation could also be an option. It does take a little bit of time and usually requires participation of your guardians, but it is something that you could look into. The court would usually want to see that you are able to financially care for yourself, that you are going to school and that you have a job. If you have further questions about that, you the first step would be to contact a lawyer. You can call one at 415-863-3762 or 1-888-292-4252. That number is to Legal Services for Children.

    If reconsidering how you communicate with your parents about this doesn’t seem to get you where you were hoping to be, we might have to consider the worst case scenario which seems to be moving to Arizona and living with your parents. I know this may seem frustrating to think about, but it is important to think about ways to make the best out of a situation that may be out of our control. If this does happen, thinking through who you can depend on for support and guidance may be an option for you. You deserve to be valued and supported no matter what decision you make.

    If you’d like to talk more about anything or discuss your options further, you can call us 24 hours a day at 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929). If calling isn’t you thing, you can chat with us through our website ( from 4.30pm-11.30pm Central Time.

    We look forward to your call or chat.

    Best of luck,

    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!


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