Nassau County Emancipation of Minors Lawyer

In Nassau County, as in the rest of New York, the age of majority is 21 years of age. Under New York state law, parents must support their children until then by giving them a home, food and clothing. It is possible, however, for children to become emancipated before the age of 21, which, in some cases, can have benefits for both children and adults. As any good Nassau County emancipation of minors lawyer can tell you, there are some very good reasons that a child might want to be emancipated. Consider the case of a child in the entertainment business who is making millions of dollars. Emancipation provides them with a way to protect their income against grasping parents. Looking beyond our child star example, once emancipated, a child can enter into contracts and leases, file lawsuits, enroll in whatever school they choose, control all the income they earn and make their own health care decisions. Parents, on the other hand, no longer have the responsibility of supporting an emancipated child. If parents are divorced, the non-custodial parent would no longer have to pay child support.

There is no emancipation statute in New York, but in the course of considering a court case, a judge could declare a child to be emancipated due to their circumstances or their actions. If you are interested in becoming emancipated, opposing the emancipation of your child or otherwise dealing with the emancipation of a minor, you will need a good family law attorney who practices in Nassau County and is experienced in emancipation of minors matters. A good lawyer can explain how a minor can become emancipated and help you to address related legal and financial matters such as child support.

When a Child May Be Emancipated

No matter what, a child must be over the age of 16 to be emancipated. Here are some of the grounds for emancipation of minors.

  1. Military service. If a child under 21 joins the military, a court will consider the child to be emancipated.
  2. Self-supporting. If a child has a full time job and is financially independent, they can be deemed to be emancipated. Our example of the child entertainer who is making millions falls into this category. However, the minor could be working as a secretary or a gas station attendant and also fulfill the requirement.
  3. Marriage. If a child marries before turning 21 without the permission of their parents, a court will usually find them to be emancipated. The court would determine that the child had planned to avoid the control of their parents, and that their parents were unable to control the child. However, if a minor younger than 21 marries another minor under 21 with parental approval, the court would probably not consider them to be emancipated. Bear in mind that in the state of New York, a child under the age of 18 must have permission to marry. Therefore, as your attorney can explain, it’s impossible for a minor under the age of 18 to marry without the permission of their parents and become emancipated.
  4. Will Not Follow Parents’ Directions. A child over 16 who is basically acting like they are already emancipated, may be deemed to be so by the courts. This means they are not following their parents’ instructions, and they are staying away from home for long periods of time without parental approval. A child who has run away from home and refused to return may be considered by a court to be emancipated. A child who is going to school in another city would not be considered to be emancipated.
Emancipation May Be Reversed

Emancipation is not always permanent in Nassau County or anywhere in the state of New York. If the situation changes that caused the child’s emancipation changes, your attorney may be able to have the emancipation reversed. For example, if a minor under 21 joins the military but is discharged before turning 21, a court could deem the minor to be unemancipated. If a run-away child returns home, lives with their parents and follows their rules, they likewise could be considered unemancipated.

Nassau County Emancipation of Minors Lawyer

Emancipation is often not an area of the law that is clear cut, and a court may consider a number of issues. If you are seeking emancipation yourself, if you are concerned that your child could be deemed to be emancipated, or if you are faced with other issues around this topic, you should consult with a good family law attorney in Nassau County who is experienced with emancipation. The staff at Stephen Bilkis and Associates has years of experience successfully representing clients on matters related to child support, child custody, as well as other family law matters. Contact us at 1-800-NY-NY-LAW (1-800-696-9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent clients in the following locations: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and Westchester County.

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