Will I be considered a runaway if I move out against my parent’s will at 17?

UPDATED: Oct 2, 2022

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Will I be considered a runaway if I move out against my parent’s will at 17?

Long story short, I’m 17 and I’d like to move
into my grandparents’ house because my parent
treats me like garbage. I don’t want to get
into too much detail, I’d just like to know if
it is possible for me to leave without getting
into legal trouble, or get sent to a mental
hospital. I know if I go, my parent will for
sure call the police or try to force me home. I
am in South Dakota

Asked on August 14, 2019 under Criminal Law, South Dakota


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

You are still a minor, so you cannot decide where to live: that is up to your parent. So yes, they can call the police, they can have you brought back, etc. Only if you are an "emanicapated" minor can you make your own decisions, and in your state, that requires 1) you get married; or 2) you are on active duty military service; or 3) you get a court order of emancipation, which ider, however, requires parental consent. You are 17; you will be a legal adult in a year or less. Putting up with the treatment and waiting it out is your best option.

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