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Can me and my girlfriend runaway and get married?

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  • Can me and my girlfriend runaway and get married?

    me and my girlfriend want to runaway from georgia and get married in maryland where we will proceed to move to arizona in a safe and stable environment. will me or my girlfriend be put in jail if her parents report her as a runaway and we get caught? and how likely is it that we will get caught? her parents will think we are going to arizona not maryland. will they set out an amber alert and will they be searching the entire country? we can get fairly close to maryland before her parents found out we left. we also have a daughter together that we will be taking with us, will she be taken away from us if we are caught? and by us running away to get married is technically called eloping, would it still be runaway? i am 17 and she is 16.

  • #2
    Reply: Can me and my girlfriend runaway and get married?

    Thanks for contacting the National Runaway Safeline.

    Running away is a big step and although we have no way to predict how far you might get or if you will be caught. We can give you a generalization about runaway laws.
    Keep in mind that we are not legal experts and that laws and possible consequences can vary from state to state.
    In most states 18 years old is the age that an individual may leave home without permission from their parent or legal guardian. A person under the age of 18 leaving home without permission, a parent/guardian may file a runaway report with the police. What actions the police take once you are filed as a runaway can vary a lot from state to state and even city to city.

    Generally speaking, a minor that encounters a police officer while reported as a runaway, may likely be detained until they can be returned home. Another thing to consider is that while running away is not a crime, a legal adult who allows a runaway to stay with them may be putting themselves at risk for being charged with harboring a runaway. A good way to find out the laws in your area is to call the non-emergency number of your local police and ask what their policies are regarding runaway youth. Does that make sense?
    We understand that you have a daughter together and are planning to take her with you.
    Again we cannot say what consequences if any the two of you might face by running away with her.

    It also sounds like you would like to get married. Have you looked into the laws concerning the age individuals can marry in your state or any others without parental consent?
    The safety of the two of you and your child is important and there are things to consider not only for you but your child. For example you might consider how you are going to survive. Do you have a plan to shelter and feed your baby as well as your selves? Do you have enough essentials?
    Things like milk, food, diapers etc.

    We understand that this might be a lot of information to take in.
    It’s great that you are researching for information and a great job reaching out to NRS.

    NRS is here to listen and here to help.
    If you would like to speak more about your situation you or your girlfriend are welcome to contact NRS at 1-800-Runaway (786-2929) or
    We would be glad to listen and explore options with you.

    We hope to hear from you soon.

    Take care,
    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!


    • #3
      I want to be with him

      hi I’m a minor, in high school, and my “boyfriend” who is graduating soon is an adult, we are both very in love, but we are scared, well I am scared, I thought about running away with him or at least seeing him before I run away but my mom hates him, she is a very big impact on my life and I hate to do this but I just hate putting her through the emotional pain I am putting her now.. I live in Maryland, is it possible to hide away, is it possible to just leave everything cause I can’t be happy, I’m trying but everything hurts and it’s messed up for my mom that I’m only happy with him


      • ccsmod1
        ccsmod1 commented
        Editing a comment
        Hey there,

        Thanks so much for contacting us, it takes a lot of courage to reach out and share your story. It must be really hard to live in a home with so much tension between you and your mom. It sounds like you care a lot about both your mom and your boyfriend and the issues that your mom has with him is causing you a lot of distress. Running away is a big decision and it can be very stressful to figure out what you want to do.

        It’s important to consider all the possibilities that can occur if you leave home. You will need to plan out how you will cover basic necessities like travel to/from school/work, food, clothing, etc. If you have a place to go in mind, it’s good to see what the expectations of the living arrangement will be like; rules, the amount of time you’re allowed to stay, if you’re expected to contribute financially, etc. This can all influence your decision to leave. If you do opt to leave your home your mom 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.

        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.

        All the best,

    • #4
      Me and my boyfriend are both 16, be 17 soon.. we want to get married but his adoption parents refuse to sign papers we are in West Virginia . Is there a state we can go to and get married without parental consent. ?


      • ccsmod15
        ccsmod15 commented
        Editing a comment
        Thanks for reaching out to us. It sounds like your boyfriend’s adoptive parents are opposed to you two marrying and you’re exploring where you might be able to go to get married. We’re not legal experts, but we can help you explore your options so that you can figure out your next steps.

        Because laws can vary from state to state, we aren’t able to keep a directory of which states allow marriage for youths under the age of 18. The information we have on emancipation doesn’t provide any details about how this may affect your ability to marry before the age of 18, but if you’re interested in learning more about this, someone more familiar with the laws in your state may be able to help. We have city-specific resources that may be able to answer your questions, so we encourage you to reach out to us by chat or phone. We’re available 24/7 via chat at and by phone at 1.800.786.2929 (RUNAWAY). We’re here to listen, here to help. Stay safe!


    • #5
      Can my girlfriend who is 2 weeks away from being 18 leave home to live with me I’m in Maryland


      • ccsmod13
        ccsmod13 commented
        Editing a comment
        Hi there,

        Thank you for contacting us here at NRS. As soon as your girlfriend turns 18 she is more than likely considered a legal adult which means she can move out and make decisions about where she lives without being considered a runaway. However, if your girlfriend leaves before turning 18, her parents can attempt to report her as a runaway to the police. Running away is not illegal, but it is a status offense. This means her parents can ask police to return her home if they know where she is staying.

        We hope this information helps. Please do not hesitate to reach out again if you need to talk more about your situation. We are available 24/7 for immediate support by phone at 1-800-786-2929 and through live chat at

        Take care,

    • #6
      I have a guardian I'm developmentally disabled but I can function on my own I have a boyfriend that works has money and can take care of me am I allowed to run away and get married and not be taken by police and brought back home?


      • ccsmod2
        ccsmod2 commented
        Editing a comment
        Hello There,

        Thank you so much for reaching out to The National Runaway Safeline, we are here to help and here to listen. It sounds like you have a difficult decision to make and we hope that we can help.

        We are happy to hear that you have a boyfriend who you find is supportive and can take care of you. We are not legal experts so it is hard to say what would happen if you were to leave and get married. An option you may want to consider would be to call your local court house and explain your situation and they would be able to lead you in the right direction.

        If you have any more questions or would like to talk more about your situation, please give us a call. We are available 24/7 to listen and to provide support. Best of luck!


    • #7
      Me and my girlfriend both get treated like dirt most of the time by our families. We want to first raise money so that we can divorce our parents and then get married. I'm 15 and shell be 15 on Feb 8th. We want to keep our school education just get away from our family and be together/ What should we do and we want and need a plan so if you can make one please do.


      • ccsmod16
        ccsmod16 commented
        Editing a comment
        Thanks for reaching out; we are glad that you did. It sounds like you and your girlfriend are each in difficult and stressful situations at home, and it's understandable that you are looking for a way to get out of it.
        The issue with minors getting married is that the laws vary by state, and would require parental consent from each of your parents to do so.
        We hope that you and your girlfriend would separately reach out to us so that we can listen to you and help.
        We work best when we can have a conversation together. You each can chat us through this website or call our hotline at 1-800-786-2929. All our services are 24/7 and are confidential to you.
        We truly hope to hear from you soon.
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