Bridgewater, NJ asked in Family Law and Domestic Violence for New Jersey

Q: Can a 16 year old move out of their house to live with their grandparents with consent of only one parent?

If a 16 year old's mom gives permission for them to move into their grandparents house, but their father doesn't, do they need both parents permission, or can they move out with only their moms permission.

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2 Lawyer Answers
Richard Diamond
Richard Diamond
  • Domestic Violence Lawyer
  • Short Hills, NJ
  • Licensed in New Jersey

A: As a parent, your question troubles me and the short answer is that there is no good answer to this question. I presume that you are having trouble with one or both of your parents and you are looking for space away from your current home setting. Presuming im correct, the 1st question is what the reason for the dispute and how is that issue going to be addressed living with your grandparents?

Hypothetically, the dispute is that your father feels that you are not cleaning up your room, not doing chores asked of you, not studying and / or not coming home before the curfew time set by him. And your plan is to go stay with your grandparents because you think that they will be much more lenient on you and not bust your chops on studying, curfew, etc. In that setting, the real reason you are seeking to move out is because you dont want to comply with the rules imposed on you and you are convinced that living elsewhere, your grandparents will not impose the same type of rules.

I have no idea what is taking place in your home setting or why you feel the need to move out, but im not sure that going to live with your grandparents is the solution. No 16-year-old (including me when I was your age) likes strict rules but the question is how to deal with the setting more constructively. If you ultimately conclude that you have no choice, then you also need to get counseling in place for yourself as well to address why you needed to leave.

Leonard R. Boyer
Leonard R. Boyer pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Clifton, NJ
  • Licensed in New Jersey

A: You did not indicate whether or not your parents are married or divorced. But this question means there is a lot of trouble going on in your family that is not being disclosed. At 16 you have no right to retain counsel, but if an adult brings a legal proceeding to allow this to happen, a Guardian Ad Litem (to protect your best interests) will be appointed by the Court. I strongly suggest that the entire family seek psychological counseling.

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