What Is It Called When a Child Divorces His Parents?

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When a child divorces his parents, it is called the emancipation of a minor. Emancipation laws in all 50 states allow a child, under specific circumstances, to become legally separated from his parents.

In general, a court grants emancipation to a child under 18 when there is enough proof that severing the ties is beneficial for the child. The minor's age, physical condition and mental state are considered. The parents' abilities to care for the child, as well as their mental and physical status, are also assessed. The fact that parents and child live separately is not reason enough for legal separation. Emancipation often is granted when parents desert, abandon or fail to support their children. Also, some minors who marry or enlist in the military receive emancipation.