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Missouri 17 YO Runaway Laws

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  • #46
    I have a friend who is in a foster home and is 17 but wants to run away due to safety risks at the home. How much trouble could my friend get into? And what happens if an 18 year old harbors my friend?Would the 18 year old get into trouble?

    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. 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. There is a loophole sometimes if the youth is close enough to being 18 the police might not look for them or file the runaway report since they are so close to being 18. Again it might be a good idea to call the local non-emergency number.
      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

  • #47
    Hello,
    My step-daughter lives in Missouri with her biological mother and step-father. She calls me frequently about how she feels that this a toxic environment for her. She is 17 and turns 18 in 2 months. She has secured a safe place to live until her biological father and myself are able to move out when I finish college this summer. He is contemplating moving out ahead of schedule. Can she move to this safe place while waiting without severe repercussions? I'm not sure whether her biological mother and step-father would call her in as a runaway.
    Thanks for any help!

    Comment


    • ccsmod7
      ccsmod7 commented
      Editing a comment
      Thank you for reaching out! It sounds like a tough situation and it is admirable of you reach out for support!

      We are not legal experts, but are happy to provide any information that we can! A youth is able to move to a new location with the permission of the guardians, so if the youth is able to gain permission from her biological father then it would be possible to move to this new location. Her legal guardians do have the ability to file a runaway report if they do not provide consent and they feel inclined to, and then there can potentially be consequences for harboring a runaway. Runaway reports are handled differently in each state and area, so reaching out to your local police department to ask this question as a hypothetical would be an option for you. Only you know your step-daughter and her situation best! We wish you the best of luck, and please feel free to reach out for more information if necessary!

      Please do not hesitate to call or chat us if you ever need: 1-800-RUNAWAY; www.1800runaway.org. We are always here for you.

      Best,

      NRS

  • #48
    I have a friend that ran away and is 16. When he turns 17 does he still have to worry about being forced to go home?

    Comment


    • 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 what’s going on. We aren’t legal experts here at NRS but generally speaking, the age of majority (adulthood) in Missouri is 18, which means that your friend is a minor until he turns 18. Since he has already left home, his parents 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 the authorities were to locate your friend he would most likely be returned home to his parents.

      Of course, you can always recommend that your friend contact us directly to go over what’s going on in depth or to explore other options that he may have available to him. He can call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY or chat us by clicking on the “CHAT” button on top of our homepage. We’re open 24/7 and here to listen and support in any way we can.

      All the best,
      NRS

  • #49
    Hi i’m 17 and turn 18 in 4 months. I have a ID and all my personal belongings. The lady i’m with has a Guardianship Waver my dad signed. if i left and went somewhere else would i get into trouble?

    Comment


    • ccsmod7
      ccsmod7 commented
      Editing a comment
      Hi there, thanks for reaching out today. Sounds like you are hoping to leave home before you turn 18. Here at NRS, we truly want to help and inform you the best we can.

      We are not legal experts here but we can speak in general terms. If you are under 18 and leave home without permission, your guardian or temporary 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 so we cannot predict exactly what would happen in your case. Generally speaking, if you encounter a police officer while reported as a runaway, you will likely be returned home. However, it is possible that local police could have a different response since you are close to turning 18. Another thing to consider is that while running away is not a crime, a legal adult who allows you to stay with them may be putting themselves at risk for being charged with harboring a runaway. One way to find out the laws in your area is to call your local police and ask what their policies are regarding runaway youth.

      Please do not hesitate to call or chat if you have questions, need resources, or need to talk. We can explore your situation, go over all your options, and come up with a plan and resources to deal with your situation over the phone or on live chat. We are looking forward to hearing from you soon, and wish you the best of luck.

      -NRS

  • #50
    So I just turned 15 and have been thinking about either running away or just ending it all through suicide and I'd rather run away then kill myself but all options are on the table right now. My dad just found out that I vape chew and drink he wasn't mad but I feel like he's just dissapointed and he is like the only one in my family who cares about me. My mom is always ride to me and does things just to make me mad like recently I had to go to summer school just to make up one class but instead just to make me mad and ruin my summer she signed me up for 2. I also just got a snake and it's the only thing I've ever wanted in my life and it's gone within the first 3 days of owning it I'm not sure but I feel like my mom did something to it just to make me more depressed. I've been having these thoughts since 4th grade.

    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 sounds like you’re quite overwhelmed by things at home right now. It sounds like you’re fearing that the situation may end in suicide if things don’t change. Your safety and well-being is important. If you are at risk of any danger or feeling unsafe, we encourage you to reach out to 911 or seek emergency assistance immediately. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255); www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org is also a great resource to reach out to in addition to our crisis services.
      Often, having a safe space to share how you’re feeling may bring a variety of solutions previously not thought of. Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. This may be an isolating and lonely time for you, but you are not alone in this. We want you to know that we are here as support to help you through this challenging time.
      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).
      We hope to hear from you soon.
      Be safe and stay strong,
      NRS

  • #51
    So i am going to be 17 and I plan on leaving home no matter what if my parents report me as a runaway what else can the cops do other than make me go home? Also what can happen to someone if they are charged with harboring?

    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. Also, those you stay with may run the risk of being charged with harboring a runaway. These charges depend on every situation and can be handled differently by each police station. 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

  • #52
    Hey,
    so i am 17 and just graduated highschool. I feel as though I am being trapped inside my house. Is there any way legally I can leave? I already have a different place to sleep and I have a job lined up soon. Could the police make me come back home even if I am safe and feel better there than my own home?

    Comment


    • 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 where you feel like you are trapped. Running away is a big decision and it can be very stressful to figure out what you want to do. We aren’t legal experts here at NRS, but generally speaking, if you do opt to leave your home your parent/guardians 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 a runaway report is filed and you are located by the authorities you will most likely be returned to your parents/guardians. It seems like you may be close to turning 18 since you are a high school graduate. It may be beneficial to contact your local nonemergency number (usually you can just dial 311) to see what local police policy is for runaways who are close to 18.

      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.

      Stay safe,
      NRS

  • #53
    My Mentor Child was just kicked out of his home. I know if he stays with my husband and I that we may be in trouble. He is 17 yrs old, and we have been pushing him since he was 8 to break the cycle. Also, the car is in his name? Can she keep it? I am at a loss on how can help if he is not a runaway. Also i guess could come back and say he ran away??? Any advice.

    Comment


    • ccsmod15
      ccsmod15 commented
      Editing a comment
      Hi there,
      Thank you for contacting us at the National Runaway Safeline and trying to help your mentor child.

      It sounds like your mentor child is going through a really hard time right now. If there is any abuse going on he has the option to file an abuse report at the Child Help USA at 1-800-422-4453 and they can help provide him with information about filing an abuse report. If his safety is at risk he can call 911. We are not legal experts, so we are not sure about legality about things, You can contact Law Help at www.lawhelp.org and they can help you with legal information.
      Just speaking generally as you mentioned if he is to runaway without his parents permission he can be brought back home and whoever he is staying with could be charged with harboring a runaway. However in some states laws can be flexible and the best way to find out what might happen is to call the local police department an check with them.

      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.

      Best,
      NRS

  • #54
    Hi my girlfriend who is 15 ran away from home tonight she’s at a sketchy friends house I want her to stay here but I’m not sure if it’s illegal to have her here if she’s 15 and a runaway she plans on going home in a couple days but I want her to be safe here but I don’t want to be in any legal trouble if I do. What can I do to help her? Thanks

    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. We want you to know that we are here as support to help you through this challenging time.While it is great that you want to help out it might not be a good idea since anyone a minor stays with can be charged with harboring a runway. This would put you in a place where you could get in trouble. It might be a good idea to just inform your gf you are worried and that might be a good idea to tell her that she could be in danger. 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).
      If you are at risk of any danger or feeling unsafe, we encourage you to reach out to 911 or seek emergency assistance immediately.
      We hope to hear from you soon.
      Be safe, NRS

  • #55
    Hi. So I’m wanting to leave at 17 but apparently dfs is involved. Am I allowed to move out still? I will have a safe place to go and I’m engaged. The Missouri laws say that I can move out at 17 and that a cop won’t bring me back if they do find out where I am. And that at 17 my parents can’t really file a runaway report cause I’m pretty much on my own at 17 as a girl.

    Comment


    • ccsmod2
      ccsmod2 commented
      Editing a comment
      Hello There,
      Thank you for reaching out to The National Runaway Safeline, we are here to help and here to listen. We are not legal experts but do have some knowledge of the laws. At 17 you would still be considered as a minor and would not be allowed to leave unless your parent’s gave you permission. If you were to leave without permission your legal guardian could file a runaway report and if the police found you they would most likely bring you home. You could always contact your local police department for an answer as it seems like you heard differently. If you are only a few months away from being 18 the police may not take a runaway report but it is the police department’s decision.
      We hope this information will be helpful to you in your situation. If you have any more questions or would like to explore options please give us a call. We are here 24/7 to listen and provide support to you. Best of luck!
      NRS
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