How Can I Get Emancipated Without Parents?

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Emancipation is a legal procedure in which a minor (child under 18 years) is declared competent to act as an adult in legal matters. Certain acts, such as joining the armed forces or getting married can automatically result in emancipation. In other circumstances, a minor must seek a declaration from a judge to be emancipated (judicial emancipation). Emancipation has implications for parental rights. After emancipation, parents no longer make decisions for the minor child. In many states, minors can seek a judicial emancipation without parental consent.

  • Find out the law in your state regarding emancipation. You can look up the law online or seek the help of a court clerk in the county where you reside. Determine whether a minor must be a certain age in order to seek emancipation and find out the procedure for seeking judicial consent.

  • Determine your reasons for needing to be emancipated. Judges will only grant an order of emancipation if you have a compelling reason. For example, if you need to live independently from your parents, a judge may grant emancipation so that you can sign a rental agreement.

  • Be prepared to demonstrate that you are financially independent. A judge will not grant emancipation if you cannot provide evidence that you will be able to earn a living. Once emancipated, your parents are not obligated to support you or pay your bills and you will forfeit child support payments.

  • File a request for emancipation in the court of the county where you reside and explain that you do not wish your parents to be notified of the emancipation request. The form is available from the clerk of the court and it will ask your reasons for needing to be emancipated. Submit the proper filing fee.

  • Await the court hearing. You will be summoned to come to court to further explain your wish to be emancipated. The court will determine whether it is in your best interests to be emancipated.

  • Await the decision of the court. The court will notify you as to its decision. You must have an official declaration of emancipation before you can begin to enter into legal transactions.

Tips & Warnings

  • Judges will want to know that you are a mature individual who is capable of supporting yourself without parental contributions. Be prepared to demonstrate that you are employed or that you have another means of income.

References

  • Photo Credit Comstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images
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