If I’m 18, is my parent required to appear in court with me?

UPDATED: Sep 9, 2011

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If I’m 18, is my parent required to appear in court with me?

I was recently given a violation in NYS for possession of an alcoholic beverage. I am now required to appear in court and pay a $50 fine. I am 18 years old and my friend is 17. I know his parent has to appear with him but since I’m 18 I was wondering if I need a parent to appear with me?

Asked on September 9, 2011 under Criminal Law, New York


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

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Technically you are an adult and you can appear alone.  But I caution you to do that.  What were you actually charged with?  Are you sure that i is only a violation?  Are you sure that payment of the fine will not result in an admission to something that may stay with you on your record?  Wouldn't it be much better to have the matter properly looked at by an attorney to make sure that it will not comeback to haunt you later on?  I know: parents can be judgemental and you do not feel like fighting that battle.  But once the smoke clears they are the best advocate for you - yes the best.  And they can support you like no one else.  Please consider it.  Good luck.

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