Fort Worth, TX asked in Criminal Law and Juvenile Law for Oklahoma

Q: My 17 yo has runaway what are my rights as the parent. I've contacted local authorities and filed a runaway report.

My 17 yo has runaway, I've contacted local authorities and filed a runaway report. I've been told by authorities that if they make contact with her they can not force her to return home if she refuses. If I make contact with her can I as her mother force her to come home? If not, what are my legal obligations to ensure my husband and are not breaking any laws where she is concerned?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Pete David Louden
Pete David Louden
  • Norman, OK
  • Licensed in Oklahoma

A: Assuming there is not something going on in the home that would be a legitimate reason for the child to be placed outside the home, then my answer is pretty straightforward.

As the parent, you make the rules, period. The child does have options but you can limit those options to the child responding with either yes sir, yes ma'am.

If the child won't listen to you or is out of control then consult with a counselor or other professional to learn what programs may be available to help motivate this child to follow the rules.

I wish you the best of luck with this matter.

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