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Can a 17 year old move out to live with her 18 year old boyfriend?

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  • #61
    I am 17 and 5 months i live in virginia . i have a boyfriend who is 18 and will be 19 in 3 months . Could I leave home ? if i wanted to, could i leave home and live with him ? All without going to court. Does my guardian have control over me ?

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    • ccsmod13
      ccsmod13 commented
      Editing a comment
      Hi there,

      Thank you for reaching out to us here at NRS. While we are not legal experts we can speak on this generally. Your legal guardian is legally responsible for you until you turn 18 and would have some control in where you live. If you leave without their permission, they can report you as a runaway to the police. Running away is not illegal, but it is a status offense. This basically means your guardian can ask police to return you home if they know where you are staying.

      Leaving home as a minor can be challenging and we understand this must be a very difficult time. We want you to know you are not alone and we are here to listen and help as much as possible. We are available 24/7 for immediate support by phone at 1-800-786-2929 or through live chat at 1800runaway.org.

      Stay safe,
      NRS

  • #62
    Hi I'm turning 17 I want to move out with my boyfriends and his parents ,and I live in Washington state. There's has been serious issues between my parents and I, I would get mentally really hurt badly. If I tell them that I want to move out they would tell me that I can but there is no coming back. But what would happen if they changed there mind reporting to the police department saying that I'm a runaway?

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    • ccsmod13
      ccsmod13 commented
      Editing a comment
      Hi there,

      Thank you for taking to the time to reach out to us here at NRS. Leaving can be a big decision to make, but you would know better than anyone what is best for you. It sounds like you have some concerns about possible consequences if your parents attempt to report you as a runaway to the police. While we are not legal experts we can speak generally on this.

      The age of majority in Washington is 18 which is the age you are considered a legal adult with the legal freedom to choose where you live. If you leave without permission as a minor, your parents can report you as a runaway to the police. Running away is not illegal, but it is a status offense. This means your parents can ask police to return you home if they know where you are staying. Now, there is not a universal way that police respond to runaway reports. In some cases, police might not take a runaway report and might not intervene since you are close to turning 18. We suggest that any young person with this question call the non-emergency line for the local police department to ask an officer about their protocol regarding runaway reports. This can be done anonymously and the local police would have the most specific information about what could happen.

      We hope this information helps! If you would like to talk more about your situation or you have any more questions, please do not hesitate to reach out again. We are available for immediate help 24/7 through our hotline at 1-800-786-2929 or our live chat services at 1800runaway.org (click on the CHAT button on our website homepage).

      Stay safe,
      NRS
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