Emancipation Lawyer in Springfield, MO

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Summer Masterson-Goethals

Summer Masterson-Goethals
The minimum age of a person who can petition for emancipation varies from state to state. For up-to-date information, visit the Masterson Law website to learn more.

Summer Masterson Goethals

Get Help From a Skilled Emancipation Lawyer

The legal process of emancipation is a two-edged sword with both favorable and unfavorable outcomes. Parents or a child can file an emancipation petition, but they must carefully consider the consequences before deciding. If you are considering filing a petition for emancipation, seek legal advice from a skilled emancipation lawyer in Springfield, MO, who deeply understands family law issues, including child custody arrangements, and child support.

An experienced family law attorney will help you understand Missouri child custody laws before legal proceedings.

What Is Emancipation?

Emancipation is the process of getting legal independence from parents, guardians, or custodians. Teenagers aged 16 or 17 can use this legal tool to have control of their lives. At age 18, a person legally becomes an adult. Therefore, emancipation is not required.

Requirements For Getting Emancipation in Springfield, MO

In Missouri, a minor can become emancipated in one of three ways:

  1. Your parents expressly consent to the court terminating their parental rights. 
  2. You willingly live apart from your parents or guardians with their expressed or implied consent, you support yourself, and your parents have given up their parental rights in the process. You must prove that you can manage their financial situation without getting into illegal affairs. 
  3. You have gotten married or enlisted in the military.

A child seeking emancipation must be at least 16 years of age. Minors younger than 16 years of age can’t file such a petition for practical reasons, including their inability to get a job and earn income. Also, the income source of the minor must not be from any criminal means or any activity declared illegal or unlawful in the state law of the United States law.

Emancipation is a family law matter requiring the skill set that only a family law lawyer can provide. Consider speaking with an attorney experienced with emancipation in Missouri. Contact Masterson Law for a free consultation.

Springfield Emancipation Laws: Rights and Limitations

Can Dos of Emancipated Missouri Teens

In Missouri, emancipated teenagers have full legal control over their lives. They can make decisions without their parent’s consent. Additionally, the parents or guardians of an emancipated teen are not liable or answerable for their actions or decisions.

According to Missouri laws, an emancipated teenager can:

  • Establish their residency and deal in real estate property matters
  • Consent to medical treatment or procedures without their parent’s consent or involvement
  • Sign any legal contracts, including employment or business contracts
  • Choose where to work, work more than 20 hours, and are entitled to their earnings
  • Switch or enroll in schools or colleges or take student loans on their own
  • Make a will
  • Buy or sell their property, including cars and real estate

An emancipated child can also take legal action against their parents or guardians and legally sue them for any wrongful act or infringement of a legal right. Additionally, the parents aren’t responsible for the financial well-being of an emancipated child.

 

Limitations of Emancipation in Missouri

Emancipation has limitations. Getting emancipated does not mean teens will get all the rights and privileges of adults. Emancipated Missouri minors:

  • Can only vote when they turn 18
  • Need parental consent to marry unless they are 18 years old
  • Cannot buy cigarettes or tobacco products until they turn 18
  • Cannot buy alcohol until age 21
  • Cannot buy a gun until they turn 18
  • Must continue their schooling until the age of 17 or have successfully completed 16 credits toward graduation

A critical evaluation of Missouri’s emancipation laws is critical to ensure that you are fully aware of what emancipation involves. Contact a lawyer with extensive experience handling family law matters today for a consultation.

Process of Getting Emancipated in Springfield, MO

To get emancipated in Springfield, MO, you need to file a petition for emancipation in the Missouri Family Court. In addition to a legitimate reason for the emancipation request, the petition should contain information about the petitioner’s current living situation and evidence that they are or will become financially self-sufficient. The parents will then be alerted and can challenge the emancipation petition if they wish to.

According to Missouri emancipation law, a parent can also file a petition for a child’s emancipation, and the court will proceed with the hearings. The teenager asking for emancipation might need to attend special court hearings. Then the judge will then carefully determine whether to grant the emancipation based on evidence and the severity of the request.

Do You Need a Lawyer to Get Emancipated?

The process of emancipation in Springfield isn’t complicated and can easily be navigated using a definite guide on Missouri Family Law

However, working on the petition with a family law attorney can offer you guidance on several factors worth considering. 

Although Missouri family law strongly favors the idea of teenagers living under their parent’s or guardian’s support and authority, it is sometimes in the child’s best interests to be legally responsible for making their own decisions. 

A family lawyer can help you effectively present your emancipation petition in court. So, consider talking to a lawyer before proceeding with the legal matters.

Springfield, MO Emancipation Attorneys

Typically, many parents are reluctant to emancipate their children for a variety of reasons, including their desire to keep them under their care as long as possible. 

Children and their parents can have an in-depth discussion about emancipation with the help of family law attorneys. Having such a discussion could either change a minor’s mind or solidify their desire for emancipation. No matter the outcome, a knowledgeable family law attorney will give guidance through the entire process and can assist in facilitating an outcome that is in the child’s best interests. 

Ensure that you contact a family law firm that offers specific family law services including child support disputes, divorces, and a wide range of family law matters.

Call Masterson Law on (417) 522-1280 to schedule your free consultation today!

CONTACT SUMMER

Summer Masterson-Goethals
Consumer and family lawyer, former legal aid attorney and Missouri Bar Leadership Academy member, Springfield Business Journal 40 under 40 Honoree. Site Map

Masterson Law
3030 E. Battlefield, Suite A
Springfield, MO 65804
(417) 522-1280

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