Q: If I've run away from home and am living somewhere else unofficially can I contact my family? Can my dad take me home?
I ran away from home recently and DCFS hasn't really been over to tell me where I was going and what I was doing. They came over once to see if I had a place to go and a bed to sleep in, etc. The agent told the family I'm staying with that my father can legally take me home with him without legal repercussions, so I should avoid him and looking for him. They never said weather I should or shouldn't contact him but I want to let him know that I'm ok and I sometimes want to talk to him to see if everything is OK with him or let him know that I'm ok. I'm just wondering if I could contact my dad or my grandmother or brother and if my dad can actually take me home if DCFS hasn't actually legally given the family I'm with custody.
A: There is no reason you cannot contact your family and for the sake of your future relationship with them, you should. Until someone else is appointed your guardian, you are emancipated, or you turn 18; yes, your father could take you home. As your parent, he has that right.
In order to be emancipated, you are going to have to show the Court that you are capable of supporting yourself and making your own decisions. If you were being abused or neglected, you need to be honest with DCFS so they can justify placing you with a foster family. If your parents are not actively trying to force you to return home and you are in a safe situation, DCFS will likely not get involved any further.
I hope you are able to work things out. These situations are never easy for anyone involved.
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