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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
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    2

    Default Once a Child Turns 18, Can a Parent Legally Kick Him Out of the House

    My question involves juvenile law in the State of: Virginia
    We have an out of control 17 year old son, who will be 18 in December. We have caught him with marijuana, the new synthetic weed, he has been drinking alcohol, and we now find out has been popping valium and xanax and God knows what else before and during school. Friday, for the second time in a year, he has run away from from - taken his laptop, clothes and xbox - left a note saying he had been thinking of committing suicide. We have called the police and reported it. While we are hoping for the best, we have a feeling this claim of suicide thoughts is a ruse to make us feel sorry for him so he wont be punished as much when he does return home. Our main question is this....once he turns 18, can we legally kick him out of the house, change the locks, etc to keep him out? We are willing to give him his furniture and possessions to take with him, but we can't handle the defiance and law breaking any longer.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Toledo, OH
    Posts
    16,014

    Default Re: Once a Child Turns 18, Can a Parent Legally Kick Him Out of the House in Virginia

    Our main question is this....once he turns 18, can we legally kick him out of the house, change the locks, etc to keep him out?
    In Virginia, you are legally responsible for him until he turns 18 or graduates from high school, whichever comes last. After that, you can drop his stuff on the lawn, change the locks, and tell him to shove off.

    A word about the note: Please get him in to see a physician. It's really easy to dismiss a suicide note as an attempt to get out of punishment, but won't you feel terrible if he DOES kill himself? He very well may be clinically depressed and is turning to drugs and booze to quell the feelings of despair. Seems to me that he's screaming for help.
    I'm not a lawyer, but I play a researcher on the internet!
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Once a Child Turns 18, Can a Parent Legally Kick Him Out of the House in Virginia

    Oh absolutely - we realize he needs help and have already talked to the sheriff dept about bringing in a mental health person to evaluate him, but that won't happen of course until we can find him and get him home. He won't graduate until after he turns 18 - and honestly will be lucky if he does ( he is failing 3 out of 5 classes). Guess we will have to keep dealing with the drama and behavioral issues for anoth year.
    So, what if he turns 18 and drops out of school and doesn't graduate? That is a forseeable action if he gets his way - what are pour options at that point as far as this goes?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Toledo, OH
    Posts
    16,014

    Default Re: Once a Child Turns 18, Can a Parent Legally Kick Him Out of the House in Virginia

    If he formally drops out before he graduates, you can boot him out when he turns 18.
    I'm not a lawyer, but I play a researcher on the internet!
    Caution: I bite. WARNING: Do not send questions or complaints by PM. I'm likely to post them publicly and embarrass you half to death.
    I'm training for the MS Society's Bike to the Bay - and blogging about it!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    27,204

    Default Re: Once a Child Turns 18, Can a Parent Legally Kick Him Out of the House in Virginia

    not trying to argue with Missy here and if she has actually researched this, please ignore my post.

    in some states (don't know if yours is included), you can be required to actually evict your child in order to remove them from the family home when they become an adult of they refuse to leave willingly. If missy has not researched your state specifically, it would be a good idea that you did before booting him. An illegal eviction can be a costly experience for the LL in some situations.

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