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Can I leave home at 17 in Georgia?

Springfield, GA |

I am currently 17, and I was adopted when I was younger. My adoptive pareants agreed to let me see my other sisters and stay in touch, but as soon as the adoption became final, they changed their minds. Well, over the last two years I have kept in touch with my older sister, and I would love to move in with her. She is 24, married and only has one kid. I just want to be around my real family and enjoy my life. Also, last year my Adoptive mother was arrested charged with family violence for hitting me in the face. She has been very verbally, physically, and emotionally abusive to me. She has tried to isolate me from the world. No phone contact, no internet, I cant even run track at school. Could I just leave at 17, and move in with my sister?

Attorney Answers 2


As stated to you on the other legal site where you posted the identical question, you cannot do this unless she goes to court and is awarded custody.

If she did this without a court order she could be arrested and sent to prison for criminal interference with custody.

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1 comment



DJJ said I can, so I will follow what they're saying. The police said they can't force me back at my age. Thanks for the answer though. I went and enrolled in school and all so I'm happy to start fresh with someone who cares about me. And not have to be abused anymore!


You have three options in this situation:

1- you can file a petition for emancipation. If emancipated, you would be on your own and would have the right to live wherever you choose.

2- your biological sister can file for custody of you. This would require her showing a court that you are somehow deprived in your adoptive parents' custody; or that, for some other reason, custody needs to be removed from them.

3- you can wait it out until you turn 18, at which time you will no longer be considered a minor in the eyes of the law and would be free to live wherever you choose.

The above answer is a general explanation of legal rights and procedures. It does not constitute legal advice. Nor does it establish an attorney-client relationship between the individual posting the question and the attorney providing the answer.

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