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Aug 2, 2008, 10:59 AM
There are only three ways to become emancipated.
1. Join the military (but you must be 17 to be eligible to join, and there is always the possibility that the military will say no for various reasons.) And, at the age of 17, a minor still needs parental consent to enlist in the armed services.
2. Get married. To get married, you need your parents’ permission, although in some states you can get married without your parents’ permission if the female is pregnant or has given birth, which means you take on the expenses not just for yourself, but for a child as well. To be married w/o parental consent, whether pregnant or not, the minor still needs a court order in EVERY state in order to marry.
3. Have your parent’s permission. To do this, a parent must tell the court that they no longer wish to have control over the child and are willing to relinquish his/her rights and obligations to the minor, AND the minor must prove to be self-sufficient.
To become emancipated WITHOUT any of the above, the child must be able to prove that either the parent has abandoned the child, OR the parent mistreats the child.
Mistreating does NOT include arguments, discipline, enforcement of rules (curfew, grounding, limited time on computer or cell phones), dictating who the child may associate with, or requiring the child to perform household chores. Mistreating DOES include parental abuse (physical or mental), neglect or failure to support.
When applying for emancipation, the petition needs the following information:
1. The name, address, residence, and date of birth of the minor.
2. The name, address, and current location of each of the minor's parents, if known.
3. The name, date of birth, custody, and location of any children born to the minor.
4. A statement of the minor's character, habits, education, income, and mental capacity for business.
5. A plan for success, i.e. an explanation of how the needs of the minor with respect to food, shelter, clothing, medical care, and other necessities will be met.
6. Whether the minor is a party to or the subject of a pending judicial proceeding.
7. A statement of the reason why the court should grant emancipation.
If the minor does not have the permission of BOTH parents for emancipation, then the parent who has NOT consented must be served with the petition, so to be made aware of the process.
The plan for success must include explanations for how the minor meet the following needs:
1. Shelter (rent AND utilities)
4. Medical Care (securing medical insurance)
6. Living necessities (toilet paper, toothpaste, soap, shampoo and other “sundries.”)
7. School supplies
The minor must also consider how s/he will pay for the following non-necessities:
1. Phone (cell and/or land line)
4. Computer/internet access
When applying for housing, remember that a landlord may be reluctant to rent to a minor despite their emancipation status. In this case, a landlord can protect him/herself by asking the minor to find an adult to co-sign the lease. If any problems occur, the landlord can pursue the adult for the unpaid rent or other problems. So minors may still need an adult to help them secure housing.
Employers are bound by child labor laws, so a minor will not be allowed to work full time at a single job, despite emancipation status, until s/he reaches the age of 18.
Emancipated minors are required to remain in school full time until they reach the age of 18.
If emancipation is granted, the minor will have the status of an adult for purposes of all criminal and civil laws.
And, last but not least, if the state does NOT have statutes or case law allowing for emancipation, it is not an option. You cannot file for emancipation in another state that you may wish to move to once emancipated.
Also,When a child becomes emancipated they are asking the judge to grant them authority to do the same things as a person who has reached the Age of Majority which is or 18 or 19 years old in most states. In the State of Minnesota this age is 19.
If the child receives permission from the court or the parents to be emancipated then the parents or the guardians are not responsible for the child. That means they are not obligated to provide money, medical insurance or any other kind of support.
Before a child gets emancipated he or she must be able to provide for themselves, handle their own money and have a legal way to make money. All these conditions at a minimum must be met before the judge will make a ruling in favor of the child.
What are some of the general rules on how to get emancipated in Minnesota?
The child must be a resident of Minnesota
The child has to be at least 16 years of age
The child must be living separate and apart from the parents or guardian
The child must be capable of supporting himself or herself financially and managing his or her own affairs
Each parent or guardian must consent (although there are certain exceptions)
Not a ward of the state
Just because a child becomes emancipated there are still certain responsibilities the child must take care of themselves:
Cannot drink alcohol until the legal age in that state
Must attend school
Cannot get married unless he/she has parents permission
Cannot vote until the age of 18
Cannot purchase cigarettes or alcohol
Cannot purchase or possess firearms
Now for the good news about emancipation. The child who is granted emancipation can get medical care, apply for a work permit, sign up for school and go to college and live where he/she wants to. Remember this is a big responsibility and when you ask for it you really should be ready to receive it.
If you want to get emancipated then go to the appropriate juvenile court to start the proceedings. You probably be interviewed to make sure you understand the ramifications of emancipation. If it is deemed that you are a candidate then a petition in juvenile court should be filed to start the process.
Once you are emancipated make sure you keep your papers with you at all times. When things occur you might have to provide proof of emancipation!