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17 Year old moving across state lines legality

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  • 17 Year old moving across state lines legality

    Hello, my girlfriend and I have been dating long distance for almost 3 years now, and I have stayed at her house twice now and met her family. We are both 17 (Though I will be 18 in two weeks), I am from Minnesota and she is from Massachusetts. Her family is very emotionally abusive and unsupportive, and we both desperately want to get her out of that house and move her here. Trying to become emancipated would likely not work for lack of physical evidence, and would only make the situation worse. I have talked to my parents, and they said they wouldn't mind her moving here when she is 18 (in 6 months), but she is at her breaking point and every day is a struggle, much less months.

    I have the money to get her a plane trip here, but I don't know the legal restrictions. I know moving a minor across state lines is a felony, but what exactly is required for that? Would buying her transportation to come here count as me moving her? If she says she was in an abusive household, and my house is much more safe, would that just cause more legal issues? Can a minor leave home if one guardian gives permission and the other does not? Would Minnesota state laws be the subject or Massachusetts? I just want her to be safe instead of suffering in a terrible house. Thanks for any replies in advance!

  • #2
    Re: 17 Year old moving across state lines legality

    Hi there,

    Thank you for reaching out to us here at the National Runaway Safeline. It sounds like you and your girlfriend have both been going through a lot and we’re glad that you have contacted us. We’re here to support you in any way that we can.

    So you shared with us that your girlfriend has been experiencing emotional abuse at home and we are sorry to hear about this, no one deserves to be abused in any way. It sounds like it is really difficult for her to be at home right now. It is really good to hear that she has got your support, as well as your families. Is there anything else that has been helpful in getting her through this difficult time?

    You mentioned that she only has 6 months until she is 18. We are not legal experts here, but generally emancipation can be a pretty long process and can be expensive. If your girlfriend stated that she was in an abusive household, they would likely try to make a report with Child Protective Services. Is this something that she has ever thought about doing? Laws vary state by state, so Massachusetts laws may not be the same as those in Minnesota. It sounds like you have a lot of legal concerns that are totally understandable. Again, we’re not experts so we do not want to misinform you. If you give us a call or chat us, we can locate legal resources to you that could hopefully help you further.

    We’re here 24/7 and we hope to talk to you soon.

    Good luck and stay safe,
    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/we_care_what_you_think

    Comment


    • #3
      My fiance is 17 and will be 18 in 8 days and she left home without consent from Georgia and is coming to Oklahoma what will happen

      Comment


      • ccsmod5
        ccsmod5 commented
        Editing a comment
        Hi,
        Thanks for writing in. While we aren’t legal experts, we can speak in generalities. Whether or not police will pursue a 17-year-old runaway varies from police station to police station. In some cases, police may decide not to pursue runaways who are very close to turning legal age. This is assuming your fiance’s parents have filed a runaway report. If they have not filed one, no one would be pursuing your fiancé. You may be able to get more information by calling your fiance’s local police non-emergency line and asking, hypothethically, if they would pursue a 17-year-old runaway who would turn 18 in about a week.
        If you or your fiancé would like to talk more specifically about your situation or if you need help locating resources, feel free to reach out to us at the National Runaway Safeline at 1-800-786-2929. Our lines are open 24/7 so someone is always here to listen and help. Best of luck to you.

    • #4
      I am 17 years old and am a resident of Washington, USA. I currently live with my parents. This summer when we go on vacation to New York, I plan on leaving them and taking a bus without their permission to New Hampshire, where I will stay with my 19 year old boyfriend and his parents for two months. Again to sum up, I will be leaving my parents without their permission and staying with my boyfriends family for two months in NH. I’m not looking for a lesson on morals, just simply my legal rights and what my parents are capeable to do about this. What can my parents legally do about this? Will his parents get in trouble for letting me stay? Are there any other potential consequences we may face?

      Comment


      • #5
        Hi there,

        Thank you for reaching out to us at the National Runaway Safeline. We are here 24/7 to listen and to support.

        We are not legal experts, but we can tell you that because you are a minor, if you leave and your parents file a runaway report, you could be returned home. There could also be legal consequences for your boyfriend and his parents or whomever you stay with for what is called harboring a runaway. It is not a crime to run away, it is a status offense, but it is illegal to harbor a minor. One thing you can do is reach out to your local police to inquire how they handle runaway reports for 17 year olds. Some cities and departments treat them differently because a 17 year old is so close to becoming a legal adult. The way to get the most accurate information would be to call your local police non-emergency number and anonymously inquire about their practices. If you need help finding this number or if you want to walk through this option with a liner, we can be reached at 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929).

        Best,

        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


        • #6
          I am 17, turning 18 in October. I have a bad home life, but I can not involve CPS for reasons I do not wish disclosing. Just know it's not an option for me. Problem is, I live in Alabama, so the legal age of adulthood is 19. If I runaway to another state when I am 18 where I am a legal adult, will the police(in either state) be ALLOWED to pursue me, and will anyone who helps me be at legal risk?

          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. It seems there is a lot that you are faced with right now and you’re feeling like leaving is one of your only options. It seems you want to know some information on runaway laws.
            While we are not experts on the law, 18 is generally the age that an individual may leave home without parent permission. If you are under 18 and leave home, your parent/guardian may file you as a runaway and you may be returned home. If you ran away and went to another state you would still be counted as a runaway because you are not from that state. Your place of residence determines what laws apply to you. Also, those you stay with may run the risk of being charged with harboring a runaway. For more specifics on the law, the local non-emergency police or legal aid may better answer legal questions.
            We are here as support to help through this challenging time. We can best help by phone or chat as NRS is unable to respond more than twice by email to assist you. If you would like to talk more in detail 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.
            Be safe,
            NRS

        • #7
          Hello, I'm a 17 year old and I am wanting to go visit my boyfriend for a week in Wisconsin, I'm from Illinois. Is that illegal? Yet, my parents said I can go. Is it illegal to cross state lines without a parent?

          Comment


          • #8
            Reply: Hello, I'm a 17 year old

            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. As a precaution you might consider having some written and notarized document from your parent’s giving you permission to go on the trip and where and who you will be staying with. For more travel information involving minors you or your parent’s might think about contacting local legal aid services.

            If you would like to talk more in detail and share more about how we can help specifically, we can best help by phone or chat as NRS is unable to respond more than twice by email or bulletin for assistance, 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


            • #9
              I live in Alabama with my adoptive parents. I have recently gotten in touch with my birth mother who lives in Texas. I am 18 but the age for Alabama is 19. If I go to Texas will the age law of 18 for Texas apply to me?

              Comment


              • ccsmod13
                ccsmod13 commented
                Editing a comment
                Hi there, thank you for contacting NRS.

                We are not experts when it comes to legal issues, but we can share some general information on runaway laws. Because Alabama is your home state where your guardians live then Alabama's runaway laws are most likely the ones that would apply in your situation. If you did leave without your adoptive parents permission then they could file the runaway report. This means that if police knew where you were then they might try to bring you back home. Your situation is a little more complicated because you are very close to being considered a legal adult in both states and you are entering a state where the age of majority is 18. The local police department where your adoptive parents live will have more information on how they would handle a runaway report for someone in your situation. You can call the non-emergency number to ask questions anonymously. It would be helpful to ask a question like " would officers pursue a runaway report and attempt to return an 18 year old home if that individual crossed state lines into Texas where the age of majority is 18?" If you do not feel comfortable calling yourself, we can call the police department for you if you call or chat with us at 1-800-786-2929 or 1800runaway.org. We are available 24/7 if you would like to talk more in depth about your situation or if you need any help.

                Take care,
                NRS

            • #10
              Can an adult bring a 17 year old across state lines legally

              Comment


              • ccsmod13
                ccsmod13 commented
                Editing a comment
                Hello,

                We are not legal experts by any means, but from what we know it can be illegal to transport a minor across state lines without the guardian's permission. The police department where the youth is from will have more specific information about laws for the state and police protocol. You can call the non-emergency number to ask questions anonymously.

                We are available 24/7 to listen and help. Do not hesitate to reach out by phone or chat if you have any further questions or concerns.

                Good luck,
                NRS

            • #11
              Hi I'm from Wisconsin and my girlfriend is 18 in two months an I will be 18 in about 10 months my at home life has been very difficult since my mom's new boy friend has moved in. He yells at us for no reason and treats my mom like nothing but she just stays with him. I was wondering if I could get in trouble an risk my girlfriend getting in trouble if we cross state lines. Ik I didn't really explain much but it's just things I don't like to talk about and I'm always grounded and can't leave my room and I'm 17 and I'm ready to run I can't handle my at home life anymore I'm miserable to the point where I think about hurting myself some times and my girlfriend is the only thing that keeps my on my feet. I willingly go to school everyday and still come home and I'm forced to clean the house and then stay in my room all the time because how often I'm grounded. I'm not sure if you guys still respond but I really need someone's help.

              Comment


              • ccsmod0
                ccsmod0 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. It seems there is a lot that you are faced with right now and you’re feeling like leaving is one of your only options. It seems you want to know some information on runaway laws.
                While we are not experts on the law, 18 is generally the age that an individual may leave home without parent permission. If you are under 18 and leave home, your parent/guardian may file you as a runaway and you may be returned home. Also, those you stay with may run the risk of being charged with harboring a runaway. For more specifics on the law, the local non-emergency police or legal aid may better answer legal questions.
                We are here as support to help through this challenging time. We can best help by phone or chat. If you would like to talk more in detail 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.
                Be safe,
                NRS

            • #12
              Hi I'm a 17 yr old turning 18 in 17 days and I'm on a "roadtrip" with my parents we are currently in the same state as my boyfriend. I am extremely stressed and at my limit of what I can deal with. If I ran away to his house what would happen?

              Comment


              • ccsmod15
                ccsmod15 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. It seems there is a lot that you are faced with right now and you’re feeling like leaving is one of your only options. It seems you want to know some information on runaway laws.
                While we are not experts on the law, 18 is generally the age that an individual may leave home without parent permission. If you are under 18 and leave home, your parent/guardian may file you as a runaway and you may be returned home. Also, those you stay with may run the risk of being charged with harboring a runaway. For more specifics on the law, the local non-emergency police or legal aid may better answer legal questions.
                We are here as support to help through this challenging time. We can best help by phone or chat as NRS is unable to respond more than twice by forum to assist you. If you would like to talk more in detail 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.
                Be safe,
                NRS

            • #13
              hi so im 17 turning 18 in july and i want to run away because i live in an abusive household. i have a safe place to go but its across state line and i gont want to go to court or anything what should i do?

              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 at the National Runaway Safeline on our public forum. We are always here to listen and here to help in any way that we can. It must be really hard to feel like you don't have many options or choices in your own life. Must be pretty isolating for sure.

                Now we aren't legal experts here and you might have already read on this forum thread about what could happen if you were to leave home before the age of majority. So we won’t get into that since you can find it fairly easily.

                Of course we can’t speak for all police, but it is to our understanding that if law enforcement were to find a reported runaway it’s in their policy to return them home. When a parent files a runaway report, it usually is also entered into the NCIC (The National Crime Information Center) so if you were to leave the state and go somewhere else, the report will follow you until your 18. If you were caught outside of your state, we have heard of youth being placed in either youth shelters or juvenile detention center until they can be released to their parents and/or legal guardian.

                We encourage you to reach out to us here for more support and to talk further about your situation if you would like to. We are here 24-hours a day via phone or online chat. Best of luck to you.

            • #14
              Is it illegal for me to travel from Texas to New Mexico as a 17 year old with my boyfriend (20 year old)?

              Comment


              • ccsmod15
                ccsmod15 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. It seems there is a lot that you are faced with right now and you’re feeling like leaving is one of your only options. It seems you want to know some information on runaway laws.
                While we are not experts on the law, 18 is generally the age that an individual may leave home without parent permission. If you are under 18 and leave home, your parent/guardian may file you as a runaway and you may be returned home. Also, those you stay with may run the risk of being charged with harboring a runaway. For more specifics on the law, the local non-emergency police or legal aid may better answer legal questions.
                We are here as support to help through this challenging time. We can best help by phone or chat as NRS is unable to respond more than twice by forum to assist you. If you would like to talk more in detail 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.
                Be safe,
                NRS

            • #15
              Hello, I am 17 yrs old. I turn 18 in 2 months. What would happen if I move from Georgia to NY? Since I wouldn't be considered a runaway according to Georgia law would the police still be able to pursue me? Could the people I would stay with in New York get in trouble with the law?

              Comment


              • ccsmod15
                ccsmod15 commented
                Editing a comment
                Hi there,

                Thanks for reaching out to us with your questions. Just so you know, if you left home without permission at 17 you might still be considered a runaway, in Georgia or in any other state since the age of majority is at least 18 in all 50 states. So if your parent or guardian wanted to, they could file a runaway report on you if you left home. Of course, maybe they wouldn't do that. Or maybe the police wouldn't take it so seriously since you are close to turning 18. But we can't really say for sure what might happen. It's also possible that anyone that houses you in New York could be accused of harboring a runaway as well as aiding and abetting a minor. But again, this is a worst-case scenario and it's not clear what the police would do.

                One option, of course, would be to simply wait out the two months till you turn 18. Then you would be considered emancipated and there would be no legal consequences for the move you are proposing.

                We'd like to help further but would need more information from you to do so. The best way we can help would be for you to call our confidential 24 hour hotline at 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929). You can also chat with us via the chat feature on our website: www.1800runaway.org. We hope to hear from you soon!

                Stay safe,
                NRS Crisis Team
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