Can your parents stop you from going away to college?

UPDATED: Sep 14, 2011

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Can your parents stop you from going away to college?

When I am supposed to start my first semester of college, I’ll still be 17. My mom doesn’t want me to get my license. If I don’t get one by the time I need to confirm which college I choose, I need to choose a college I can dorm at, so I can walk to/from my classes. My mom doesn’t want me to dorm. Since I’ll still be 17 and I’ll still be a minor, can my mom stop me from moving to college? My room and board will be payed for by my student loans, and I’ll look into getting a job on campus. If she can stop me from going away, how long does it usually take to become an emancipated minor?

Asked on September 14, 2011 under Family Law, New York


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

I can not imagine that parents would stand in the way of a kid like you that seems to have thought through the issue of attending college and has gone through the trouble of applying.  But I guess that parents can indeed be selfish and try and stand in your way.  Being a minor still by the time August rolls around is a tough place to be.  Your parents may have to fill out special forms and sign special waivers because you are a minor.  Unfortunately New York does not have an emancipation law. A child can be considered emancipated if they are self supporting.  A child may also be considered "emancipated" if he or she is between 17 and 21, leaves the parents home and refuses to obey the parent's reasonable commands.  So if the loans are in your name  - and are they really because they are generally in parent's names - and you leave then they can not stop you.  But see what the colleges that you are applying to are requiring.  Good luck to you.

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