If I’m 16, is it legal for my parents to take me out of the country against my will?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If I’m 16, is it legal for my parents to take me out of the country against my will?

I live in the US and next summer my mom and stepdad want to move to Costa Rica. Here’s some info; I was in an unstable home from ages 0-4, so I got placed into fostercare until I was 6, when I got adopted. My adoptive parents got divorced. I don’t have any contact with my biological family, but even if I did, they wouldn’t be an option. My adoptive parents have joint custody of me and my mom re-married. So my mom and stepdad want to move to Costa Rica.

Asked on August 18, 2014 under Family Law, Oregon

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

As a general matter, if you are an unemancipated minor, which you seem to be (you are certainly a minor; and you do not write that you are emancipated), your legal guardians can take you out of the country or otherwise relocate you against your will. Those legal guardians are your adoptive parents. So as a general matter, yes, your mother can take you to Costa Rica. That might be a violation of the specific requirements of you the custody agreement or order giving your now-divorced adoptive parents joint custody, if she is doing that without your adoptive father's consent or permission. However, to know whether that is the case, you (or an attorney, for you) would have to review the specific terms of  that agreement or order.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption