Divorce Guide

Divorce Guide

Divorcing The Parents

Divorce between man and wife is a common phenomenon but divorce between child and his/her parents is little heard of. However, there is a provision under US law that allows a child to seek divorce or “emancipation” from his or her parents. Divorcing the parents looks rude and unreasonable but in some cases it might be necessary.

After children become adults, they are no more required to be under the guardianship of their parents. They become eligible to stay alone and take care of their own needs. In some cases, the child might want this independence even before he/she becomes an adult and then comes the situation of divorcing the parents.

Not all parents are good and reasonable like the most. There are cases when parents become selfish or too egoistic to take care of the child’s need and sentiments. Some might take care of the children’s basic needs but the others might not do that also. There are parents who become drunkard and often beat up the child when drunk. Step parents are also likely to neglect or torture the child. Thus, need for divorcing the parents is justified in many instances. In the movie “Irreconcilable Differences”, the small girl played by Drew Barrymore asks for divorce and grants her guardianship rights to another man. Thus, the idea of divorcing the parents exists for almost a decade.

In such events, a child can request for divorce and emancipate himself/herself from the atrocities of the parents. This is known as emancipation and can be done even before the child turns an adult. So, basically this is a divorce procedure for the minor.

The laws related to emancipation differ from state to state in US. In fact, some states do not have any laws related to emancipation, for example Arizona, District of Columbia, Delaware and so on. Every state’s laws related to emancipation differ in provision and the rights granted to the minor. For example, in California, 18 years is considered the age of attaining adulthood. However, a minor can seek divorce from his parents if he/she is facing problems with them. The age to seek Emancipation in California is 14 years.

Although the basics of securing divorce from parents differ from state to state, the common procedure remains the same.

The Basic Steps Involved In Divorcing Your Parents Are As Follows:
  • The minor first files a petition in the family court saying that he or she wants Emancipation from the parents.
  • The minor has to prove that he/she can completely take care of himself/herself in all aspects, most important financially.
  • The minor has to prove the court that he/she will be better off without his/her parents.
  • Minor needs a written permission from his/her parents that they have no objection with this divorce.
On the basis of all the records submitted by the minor, the court issues a decree announcing the child’s divorce from his/her parents. After divorcing your parents, you become responsible for your own deeds and needs. Your parents become legally bound to stop interfering in your life or making any demands what so ever. You can either choose to be under someone else’s guardianship or stay on your own.

Although US law has provisions for minor divorcing his/her parents, this should not be sought until there is a genuine problem with the parents. Strictness from the parent’s side in order to maintain or teach discipline does not qualify as a ground for divorcing the parents.

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