When it comes to children and custodial issues before family court there is no "magical age," says family law attorney Jeanne M. Hannah. As far as the courts are concerned, children are defined as legal incompetents who don't have the ability to make sound legal choices. The court does, however, take into account any statements children make in regard to living preferences.Know More
While, technically, children don't have any legal rights in choosing where they want to live, in reality, the right of children to have input on this important decision varies from state to state, Hannah states. Child custody cases depend on facts and family dynamics that are unique to each case. The court acts as a third party in these situations and, therefore, finds it difficult to make child custody decisions. Judges have a lot of leeway in allowing children to weigh in on the matter.
Judges consider more than just a child's age when it comes to a child's preference to live with one parent over another, Hannah states. They look deeper into the reasons a child has a preference. A child's level of maturity is another factor. For instance, some children are very articulate in expressing their views about parents and home life. Judges also take into account any special needs children may have, such as schooling. The child's best interest is always a major factor in custody decisions.Learn more about Legal Ages
New Jersey law does not give a specific minimum age at which children may be left home alone. However, New Jersey statute 9:6-8.21 is applicable to abuse and neglect if a child under 18 has been endangered when left home alone.Full Answer >
Child emancipation laws in Louisiana are covered under the Louisiana Code of Civil Procedure. In order for a minor to be emancipated, the minor must be at least 16 years old, according to Louisiana Civil Code, Book I, Title VIII, Chap. 2, Sect. 4, Art. 385, notes Boston Coop Network.Full Answer >
It may be possible to move out at 17, but it depends on a set of very defined circumstances according to Cornell Law School. In all states, minors under age 18 (or another age if 18 is not the age of majority in that state) can become emancipated from their parents if a court agrees to the emancipation.Full Answer >
According to the Legal Information Institute at Cornell University Law School, a child is legally able to move out of his parents' home at the age of majority, which is 18 in most states. In some states, the age of majority is 19.Full Answer >