Can a parent legally take their child’s money?

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Can a parent legally take their child’s money?

My friend is 18 years old and just got her first job. Some things have been going on with her mom, and for no reason at all, her mom now wants my friend to give her half of whatever she earns from working this job. Of course on a moral standpoint, it seems wrong for her mother to take away the money she works for, especially without an incentive. But what I am curious about is the legal aspect of things. Is it completely legal for her mother to steal her money despite my friend being an adult now? What is something my friend can do to ensure her mom cannot do what she wants to do?

Asked on July 4, 2016 under Business Law, Oregon

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Your friend owes no financial duty to her mother; she is not required to pay anything to her under the law. As an adult, she can keep her entire paycheck. If her mother stteals her money she could be reported to the police (although, in a situation such as this, they may tell her to handle things in civil court). That having been said, since she still lives with her mother, her mother could begin to charge your friend rent. That would be legal. Possibly now is the time for your friend to consider moving out if possible.


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