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*sigh* New York. 18 year old. Divorced parents. Has custodial parent's permission.

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  • *sigh* New York. 18 year old. Divorced parents. Has custodial parent's permission.

    I am an 18-year old college student, both a resident of and going to school in New York State.

    Father has felony DWI charges as well as unpaid child support. I don't believe they have joint custody.

    My permanent residence is with my mother. There was & is no abuse or neglect. Because of school, I do not actually live in her house, but I am receiving approx $100 per month from her (it would be more if my father would pay child support ) and she is paying for 1 year (and only 1 year) of my car insurance.


    My mother and I have brought up the subject of emancipation (since NYS considers my parents responsible financially up to 21 years of age) because her income may be barely above what it takes to receive Child Health Plus health insurance benefits from the state, but not enough to get insurance on our own, as well as the fact that I live over an hour away at school and neither of us want her to be held responsible if I get into any trouble with the police while living in another city. I have no criminal record, or even a parking ticket, except for one promptly paid parking ticket from my college campus.

    As far as living situation goes, I am looking to move out of the dorms because of the high cost of room and board into a shared apartment or house in my college's city. I'm worried how this shared housing would affect my chances of emancipation, even though my custodial parent would willingly sign for it.

    I had planned to get a health insurance plan for students through my college, or if that was not possible, a state-aided insurance. I already take care of my ob/gyn annuals through NYS Family Planning at Planned Parenthood.


    I guess what I am asking is, would it be best to try to be emancipated, since my mother will willingly sign off, or would declaring myself as an independent and her no longer declaring me as her dependent be sufficient?

    How could this affect my options for health care, financial aid for school, and anything else?

    Would my father still be required to pay the child support that he owes up until the point of emancipation? (If he hadn't paid since mid 2008 and I was emancipated in early 2009, would he still have to pay from mid '08 until early '09?)

    Thank you, and I'm sorry for yet another NYS-related emancipation question.

  • #2
    There is student health insurance out there that is relatively inexpensive. Most of the time it might cover just accident and emergency, but if that's all you can afford, that's better than nothing. I had it for awhile while I was a student. Check through your student center or student health care department to see what is being offered.

    At 18-years-old I don't think you need an emancipation, you just need to be really financially responsible for yourself. Yes, the state may consider your parents fiancially responsible until the age of 21, but you sound like a reasonal person, why would you place your mom in a financial situtation that she'd have trouble with?

    Don't over-use your credit cards, and when you do use a credit card, pay off the entire balance immediately. Don't take out more loans then you can reasonably expect to pay back. Work as many different part-time jobs as your class schedule will allow, or become a part-time student to work more. Don't hang-out with people who will get you into trouble by association (ie roommates who do drugs, are alcoholics, etc.) or do anything stupid enough you think will get you in trouble with the police. Practice safe sex! Don't have your mom co-sign for anything, and if you can't get something without her co-signing for it, it ain't worth having.

    I don't know what the tax laws are regarding declaring a dependant. I know that so long as you are a full-time student your mother can still CHOOSE to declare you as a dependant, regardless of your age. If she chooses not to declare you as a dependant, then that's again, a tax matter.

    You'll need to consult a lawyer about the child support though.

    At 18, my parents pretty much told me, "you're on your own." Yeah, they helped out where they could, by allowing me to live at home and helping with some of my college tuition. Everything else I wanted, be it a car and the insurance, living on campus, books and meal plans, student loans, a party night, I was responsible for paying back myself. I don't know whether they continued to declare me a dependant or not on their taxes, and I don't think it was any of my business at the time. I did not need emancipation to be finanically independant or to practice fugallity.

    The only thing my parents co-signed for me were my student loans, which, had I defaulted on them, they would have been responsible for, but which I wouldn't have been able to get without their co-signing. They made me pay them all back myself. It was rough, and I worked two full-time jobs whenever I could, and managed to pay $32,000.00 back in three years. My parents weren't responsible for a dime of it.

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    • #3
      I'm in about the same situation except I got kicked out at 17, and have no contact with either of my parents.

      What I've heard though from people I've asked about this is that to be able to declare yourself independant, it is best to file your own taxes and to make sure you have documentary that YOU are paying rent, whether it be with a roommate or not. That's as much as I know.

      I asked the same question and just found that emancipation isn't something that is possible for someone who is already an adult.
      ~Early Starter~

      The comments above are based solely on my beliefs and experiences.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by hannah92190 View Post
        I'm in about the same situation except I got kicked out at 17, and have no contact with either of my parents.

        What I've heard though from people I've asked about this is that to be able to declare yourself independant, it is best to file your own taxes and to make sure you have documentary that YOU are paying rent, whether it be with a roommate or not. That's as much as I know.

        I asked the same question and just found that emancipation isn't something that is possible for someone who is already an adult.
        The thing I'm running into is that, in New York State, I can buy cigarettes, porn, and go to prison, but I'm not technically a legal adult.

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        • #5
          What do you mean by "technically not a legal adult?"

          Far as I know, 18 is the legal age of adulthood in New York.

          Not everyone is going to treat you like a legal adult though, and some companies and businesses, especially financial ones, will probably require a co-signer on a loan because 1) you don't have good credit, or 2) you don't have enough credit built up. This usually applies to all loan applicants, not just those under the age of 21 though.

          But at 18, you can certainly apply for your own credit-card without a co-signer, and get approved. This is why so many college age students get into financial trouble, because nobody ever taught them how to be responsible with credit cards (or if they did, those lessons went out the window when given a $10,000.00 credit limit).

          A landlord does not have to rent to you if you don't have someone else as a co-signer on a lease, again usually based upon a credit history background check. But your mother probably wouldn't have a problem being your co-signer so long as you've proven to her that you're not the type of person that will skip-out on paying the rent or breaking the lease. This is between your mother and yourself though. If you feel like a landlord is discriminating against you because of your age, then you'd have to file a complaint with a New York State Department of Housing government agency. Some rental facilities might very well have age restrictions.

          The only limitation on your adulthood I see is that you can't buy alcoholic liquor products.

          Regardless of your age, ANYTHING your mother co-signs on your behalf SHE WILL BE FINANCIALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR IF YOU DEFAULT. If I co-signed a loan for my baby brother, who happens to be 30 years old, and he skips out on the payments, as co-signer, I jointly took the loan, and therefore are just as responsible to make sure the payments are made, regardless of who spent the money, or where it was spent.

          But she isn't financially responsible for providing your bail money should you end up in jail.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by VeterinaryGroup View Post
            What do you mean by "technically not a legal adult?"

            Far as I know, 18 is the legal age of adulthood in New York.

            Not everyone is going to treat you like a legal adult though, and some companies and businesses, especially financial ones, will probably require a co-signer on a loan because 1) you don't have good credit, or 2) you don't have enough credit built up. This usually applies to all loan applicants, not just those under the age of 21 though.

            But at 18, you can certainly apply for your own credit-card without a co-signer, and get approved. This is why so many college age students get into financial trouble, because nobody ever taught them how to be responsible with credit cards (or if they did, those lessons went out the window when given a $10,000.00 credit limit).

            A landlord does not have to rent to you if you don't have someone else as a co-signer on a lease, again usually based upon a credit history background check. But your mother probably wouldn't have a problem being your co-signer so long as you've proven to her that you're not the type of person that will skip-out on paying the rent or breaking the lease. This is between your mother and yourself though. If you feel like a landlord is discriminating against you because of your age, then you'd have to file a complaint with a New York State Department of Housing government agency. Some rental facilities might very well have age restrictions.

            The only limitation on your adulthood I see is that you can't buy alcoholic liquor products.

            Regardless of your age, ANYTHING your mother co-signs on your behalf SHE WILL BE FINANCIALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR IF YOU DEFAULT. If I co-signed a loan for my baby brother, who happens to be 30 years old, and he skips out on the payments, as co-signer, I jointly took the loan, and therefore are just as responsible to make sure the payments are made, regardless of who spent the money, or where it was spent.

            But she isn't financially responsible for providing your bail money should you end up in jail.
            This is where I got the 21 years old from
            http://www.courts.state.ny.us/courts...ily/faqs.shtml

            Comment


            • #7
              For those confused, the actual age of majority in NY is 21. However, that said, there is no proceeding for emancipation of a minor in NY.

              Now, just because the age of majority is 21, that doesn't mean that you can't live in apartment on your own or with friends, but in no way is any landlord or manager obligated to allow you to lease an apt. without a co-signor (or s/he can just out right deny your application). This would be true if you were 35 and had no solid, good credit history.

              The age of majority being 21 in NY is primarily for parental support of their children. It really has nothing much to do with any other adult endeavor you may wish to take on after reaching the age of 18 (except for the obvious of purchasing/owning firearms and alcohol, etc.)

              As far as financial aid for college, even if you could obtain emancipation (which, as I said, you can't in NY) that would have no impact (positive or negative) for financial aid for your education. There are only a very few ways to be considered independent for financial aid purposes, and unless you are leaving out a very important piece of info about your personal circumstances, you don't meet that criteria. For example, do you have a child that YOU support or are you legally married?

              I do not know the requirements for health insurance, etc. in NY. That is something that you should be able to get info on from the provider (whether that be the state, through the school, or private insurance).

              Your father is required to pay child support per court order until the court order is abated. If he hasn't and doesn't pay according to the court order, that is an issue that will follow HIM for a long time, even after the court order is abated. It's called arrears and he will continue to owe that money until he pays. Even if he dies, it is possible that his back support would be extracted from his estate.

              Don't worry, if you suddenly decide to embark on an astonishingly sudden criminal career, your mom won't be held responsible or liable for your actions. You WOULD be prosecuted as an adult.
              HOOK 'EM HORNS!!!
              How do you catch a very rare rabbit?
              (unique up on him)
              How do catch an ordinary rabbit?
              (same way)

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