If I’m going off to college andI don’t want to live with my parents anymore, canthey report me to the police as a runaway?

UPDATED: Sep 1, 2010

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If I’m going off to college andI don’t want to live with my parents anymore, canthey report me to the police as a runaway?

I’m still 17, turning 18, by the end of the year. College is in the same state but no dorm and transportation costs would be prohibitive if my parents don’t cover them entirely themselves (which they refuse to).

Asked on September 1, 2010 under Criminal Law, New York


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

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

Technically you are a minor until you are 18.  Could your parents do that?  Why yes, I believe that they could.  You have not given many details here like who is paying for college itself and where you are going to live and who is paying for that.  Important details.  And how are you going to support yourself at college?  Is it that your parents don't want you to go to that college? 

In New York State, a child is entitled to be supported by his or her parents until the age of 21. However, if the child is under 21 years of age, and is married, or self-supporting, or in the military, the child is considered to be "emancipated" and the parents' support obligation ends.

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 parents' reasonable commands. So you may qualify here but what about all the rest of the stuff I asked?  I think that you need to get some guidance here.  Go down to Family Court and speak with a law clerk. Good luck.

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