Legal Question in Juvenile Dependency in Missouri

Legal age of Missouri

Hello, I have a question about the legal age to leave your parents' house without consent. It has been known to be 18, but I have learned recently it was changed to 17. I was wondering if this was true? Can a friend of mine( who has just turned 17) leave his house now and live with his older brother, without his parents being able to bring him back legally? (Added info.: He lives in Kansas City, MO. He just turned 17, 3 days ago and he has a decent job and car and is brother is 24 years old and can take care of him.)

Asked on 4/30/07, 9:20 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Regina Mullen Legal Data Services, PLC
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Re: Legal age of Missouri

Look into (read: google) "emancipation MO."

A quick look found this limited guidance from the government site on school residency:

http://www.dhe.mo.gov/studentresidencyrequirements.shtml

It sounds like mediation of this issue would be a VERY good idea, because the law may be unclear. A quick call to a family law attorney should answer this question for you. Call the Missouri bar for a referral, but any attorney with a regular practice in this area should be able to help you.

There's only a year to go and if your parents can come to terms with it, and everyone agree that it could work for your family, then that's a great thing.

Consult a lawyer, but you can definitely benefit from talking it out regardless of what you decide to do, in a mediation context, which is confidential. The government need not even be involved, because technically, the parents are in control of the situation, supportive of your brother and the family benefits. At the end of a session, you can come to an agreement in writing or not, that your family can use to move forward in peace.

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5/01/07, 3:12 pm

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