Below are some of the library resources that can provide further guidance on this topic. The Texas State Law Library has many other resources in addition to the highlights we present below. Please call us at (512) 463-1722 if you have any questions about these materials.
This handbook is a summary of some of the more important legal issues of juvenile law for the new practitioner. It also offers some additional ideas and strategies for the juvenile defense attorney. The stated goal of this publication is to help improve representation of juveniles across the state.
This handbook provides information for children and their families about the juvenile justice system.
About This Guide
Can a seventeen-year-old leave home? This is a common reference question at the library. While we cannot give you a definitive answer, here is some information that may help you research this topic.
Below you will find references to areas of the Texas Statutes and Texas Attorney General opinions that govern the rights of juveniles and issues related to the age of majority in Texas. If you find these statutes difficult to understand, you may want to view the "plain English" resources on this page or speak to an attorney.
This opinion responds to the following request: "Whether law enforcement officers are authorized to take a seventeen-year-old into custody simply because he or she has been reported as a missing child under chapter 63 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, and related questions. (RQ-0169-JC)"
This opinion responds to the following request: "Whether a minor may be classified as a 'missing child' under article 63.001, Code of Criminal Procedure, if the minor’s legal custodian knows the minor’s whereabouts. (RQ-0057-GA)"
This document is from the Texas Advocacy Project. Pages 23-32 of this paper contains an article called "Unaccompanied Youth", which discusses the rights of 17-year-olds.It also discusses other useful information for minors. These topics include basic legal terminology, rights of youth in child abuse reporting and investigation, protective orders for minors, youth in suits affecting the parent-child relationship, and the rights of pregnant and parenting teens.
The Texas Youth & Runaway Hotline (1-800-989-6884) is available 24 hours a day and provides free, confidential prevention services to youths, parents, siblings, and other family members. They may be able to provide information on whether a 17-year-old may leave home, and they encourage both parents and youth to contact them with questions. Counselors also assist youth advocates such as police, caseworkers, counselors, and school officials by locating state and local resources and providing free information and outreach materials to those working with youth and families.
Legal Research Guides from the Texas State Law Library
The information provided on this page has been prepared for general information purposes only and should not be construed as, nor substituted for, legal advice. It is strongly recommended that you contact an attorney for advice specific to your fact situation. Your local bar association or the State Bar of Texas Lawyer Referral Information Service (1-800-252-9690) can assist you with locating an attorney.
Some of the electronic resources we refer to in this guide may be in PDF format. Adobe Reader or similar software is required to view PDFs.
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From their Web site: The Center For Consumer Law helps consumers settle disputes by informing them of their legal rights and assisting with the resolution of disputes through mediation and, when necessary, litigation.