The emancipation of minors is a sensitive subject that can lead to a great deal of debate. Many states and many courts have declared different findings regarding the emancipation of minors due to marriage. In the case of In re Marriage of Schoby, the court ruled that just because a child is married does not necessarily mean that the child is emancipated.
A court is required to look at the whole picture and all of the circumstances regarding a situation in order to determine whether or not a minor who has entered into marriage should be emancipated. Many courts have found that marriage does not determine the emancipation of minors. These courts have decided that if a parent wishes to have a child emancipated because they have consented to the minor’s marriage, then the parent must petition the court for the termination of child support.
In Guzman v. Guzman, the court ruled that even if the emancipation of minors does occur, it does not require the child to leave their parents’ home and support themselves in order to maintain their independence from their parents and their status as emancipated. In some cases, one or both parents will decide that they want to continue to provide support to their child even if the minor has entered into a marriage. In instances such as this, the parents may continue to provide the minor with basic necessities such as food and clothing. The parents may also allow their child, and in many cases their child’s spouse, to live in their house.
Most states do recognize marriage as a legal form of emancipation. However, if a minor is given the consent to marry, then their status as emancipated may be dependent on location, the court and the specific conditions regarding the minor’s situation.