When it comes to children and custodial issues before family court there is no "magical age," says family law attorney Jeanne M. Hannah. As far as the courts are concerned, children are defined as legal incompetents who don't have the ability to make sound legal choices. The court does, however, take into account any statements children make in regard to living preferences.Continue Reading
While, technically, children don't have any legal rights in choosing where they want to live, in reality, the right of children to have input on this important decision varies from state to state, Hannah states. Child custody cases depend on facts and family dynamics that are unique to each case. The court acts as a third party in these situations and, therefore, finds it difficult to make child custody decisions. Judges have a lot of leeway in allowing children to weigh in on the matter.
Judges consider more than just a child's age when it comes to a child's preference to live with one parent over another, Hannah states. They look deeper into the reasons a child has a preference. A child's level of maturity is another factor. For instance, some children are very articulate in expressing their views about parents and home life. Judges also take into account any special needs children may have, such as schooling. The child's best interest is always a major factor in custody decisions.Learn more about Legal Ages
The youngest age a child can babysit siblings is approximately 12 to 13 years of age. The 12-to-13 age range represents a benchmark and not an absolute. A number of factors play into identifying the youngest age a child is permitted to babysit siblings, including the maturity level of the intended babysitter.Full Answer >
There is no law regarding the appropriate age for a child to be left home alone, according to FindLaw. There are, however, general guidelines that parents should follow. Each case is different due to the maturity level of the child in question.Full Answer >
A child must either reach the age of majority, which is over 17, or have a parents' permission to move out of the house according to Cornell University. Eighteen is the age of a legal adult in the United States.Full Answer >
The age a child needs to be to ride in the front seat legally varies from state to state, explains the Governors Highway Safety Association. Children ages 12 years and under need to ride in the back seat of a motor vehicle, advises the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.Full Answer >