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Can a 16-year-old in Texas become emancipated?

Under certain conditions, someone as young as 16 can seek emancipation. If approved, it will mean that the youth is mature enough to assume adult responsibilities.

If you are of minor age and seeking emancipation or a parent or a child who is, you may have concerns about this process. Below, we will address the most common questions asked about emancipation for San Marcos and Lockhart families.

What does emancipation mean for parents?

It means parents are no longer legally responsible for the minor child. It also means that they must no longer feed, clothe or shelter the minor. Parents will also lose control of their child’s finances.

What does it mean for those seeking emancipation?

It typically means taking care of yourself and providing for your basic needs — food, clothing and shelter — perhaps without adult assistance. You will have to manage your bills and your income, too.

Can parents fight against it?

Parents may speak against the emancipation of their minor child in a legal setting. However, those petitioning to become emancipated also have the right to make their case before a judge or court. Judges consider the minor’s argument in favor of emancipation as well as the parents’ argument against it. Judges also look at the maturity of the petitioner and determine if they can take care of themselves before approving any emancipation request.

At what age can minors seek to emancipate?

In Texas, the age at which a minor may seek to become emancipated is 17 years. However, 16-year-olds that already live apart from their parents may also file a petition.

If you have concerns about emancipation for yourself or a child, consider improving your knowledge of Texas family law. In situations involving the emancipation of minors, this knowledge can help you determine if you need an advocate to protect your rights.

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