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2 Bumps

US Laws for children (Not wanting to live with parent anymore)

How old does a child have to be in the U.S. to have say in wanting to live with their parent? Our niece is very unhappy she lost her Mom not that long ago & things are going real bad for her with her Dad. She is 14.


Asked by sarasmommy777 at 1:25 PM on Nov. 12, 2010 in Relationships

Level 35 (70,598 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (10)
  • Each state is indeed different on their laws regarding such matters. Judges also look at how this child will be able to support herself...upon reexamining your post I take it that you want to raise your niece, correct?? Judges listen to how the child feels, the nature of what is taking place in the home to cause the child's feelings. Most likely the judge would want her and her father to receive family counseling before resorting to emancipation or being placed in another home. She should definitely be receiving grief/loss counseling, at her tender young age, a girl losing her female role-model is monumental.


    Answer by Missikat75 at 2:47 PM on Nov. 12, 2010

  • Each state has different laws regarding child custody. Usually after the age of 12 or 13, judges will consider a child's request but the child's request is not the sole reason for custody change. I would try to get your niece into therapy since she is dealing with the grief of losing her mom. What kind of issues are going on with the dad? Dad is grieving too! Maybe they should both see counselors and try to work things out. Good luck.

    Answer by twinkletoes0408 at 1:27 PM on Nov. 12, 2010

  • a lot of states recognize a pregnant teen as an emancipated adult but obviously it wouldnt be good for her to get pregnant she could still try to get emancipated from her dad

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:28 PM on Nov. 12, 2010

  • I think they have to be 16 but I am not sure and i think each state is different, I would call the courthouse and find out. But there are always exceptions like if the child is in danger or something.

    Answer by countrygirl06 at 2:02 PM on Nov. 12, 2010

  • they are in Washington and the parents were not together when the Mom passed suddenly & things were not so good with the Mom & Dad at the time. Its a big sad mess.

    Comment by sarasmommy777 (original poster) at 1:30 PM on Nov. 12, 2010

  • Where does she want to go? Talk to the dad. He may not want the responsibility of her anyway. He may let her go with a responsible adult. Then the person just goes to an attorney with the dad and he signs over custody. Easy as that.

    Answer by admckenzie at 3:16 PM on Nov. 12, 2010

  • they are going to counselling not really working though. She wants to come live with family in Canada.

    Comment by sarasmommy777 (original poster) at 3:16 PM on Nov. 12, 2010

  • the Dad does not want her to go.

    Comment by sarasmommy777 (original poster) at 3:17 PM on Nov. 12, 2010

  • I think she needs to stay with her dad. It is possible that the mom who has passed away had begun alienating this child against her father and now the child is continuing this alienation campaign. It would be very sad and wrong to take her away if this is the case. Because her father has a chance of healing this relationship if the mom did indeed do this. Look up PAS on the internet and see if any of these things may have happened. Try to look at it honestly and without bias. Many parents who engage in PAS are very, very good at it and get other parties completely on their side.

    Answer by lilangilyn at 4:33 PM on Nov. 12, 2010

  • no the Mom did not do that lilangilyn the Father was more interested in his girlfriend at the time & not seeing his kid so this is a shocker for him to have to deal with

    Comment by sarasmommy777 (original poster) at 9:51 PM on Nov. 12, 2010