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16 Year Old :Custody Issues

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  • 16 Year Old :Custody Issues

    So my parents divorced and I wanted to live with my father. My mom allowed me to stay with him, however his home wasnt suitable so I stayed only a mile away with my grandma. One day, at 4 am my mom told my grandparents to drive me to the border of the state I had been in without any warning to me or my father. Mind you, my mother moved states which is one reason why I wanted to stay with my dad. I complied, I was scared that the police may get involved. I have 3 other siblings that do not want to live with my dad. We are going to visit him in a few days and I wanted to know if it was legal for me to stay with him and refuse to go back with my mom, his living conditions have changed and it is suitable for me to live there. There are other reasons that I dont want to live with her, but they dont interfere with my safety so I am worried that if it goes to court a judge with overrule it and deny the appeal for me to stay with my dad. Any loopholes?

  • #2
    re: 16 year old custody issues


    Thanks for reaching out to NRS. We are unable to give legal advice since we are not legal experts. 18 years old is generally the age that an individual may leave home without permission from their parent or legal guardian. We are not legal experts here but we can speak in general terms. If you are under 18 and leave home without permission, your 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 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, in that case there may be services (family counseling, etc.) available to you as a youth in crisis/runaway but again, police procedures related to offering those services can be different based on your location or the details of your situation. 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 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)

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