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Emancipation Laws in Tennessee

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Junior Member
What is the name of your state?What is the name of your state? Tennessee.

First of all thank you for allowing me to ask these questions!!!

My son is dating a young lady who is pregnant with someone else's child. She is pregnant by an adult who took advantage of her in our eyes anyway. He is sending child support because the mother is dangling a carrot over him with the Statutory Rape, which if were my child he would areadly be in jail. She is 16, will be 17 on Sept. 9th. She is 5 weeks away from delivering. She wants to emancipate herself from her drug addicted mother and step father. Her father who had custody of her died almost 2 years ago and the State sent her back to the mother who supposedly had gotten her life back in order.

Well she is living in the same situation again and today her mother threatned to hit her and she wants to be emancipated because she does not want her new baby in that environment. I really think she has learned a hard lesson.
She does not want the father involved because she knows that he is on Methamphetimes (sp) because he had some drugs given to him upfront and when it was time to pay up I guess his dealer he did not have the money, so the dealers followed him one night to her house and started shooting at it and caught her truck that her father had willed her on fire. They actually had to leave the town they lived in which was McMinville, TN because they were getting death threats.

But anyway what I would like to know is that we are willing to allow her to move here until she can get on her feet until after the baby is born and she can get a job etc. and schooling is also an issue. I am sure she will need to be home schooled due to needing to be with the baby and I don't know about how she would go about day care. She does recieve a Social Security check each month from her fathers death. And support from the father already.

My family is willing to take her in and allow her to get on her feet once the baby is born. We have a spare room for her and all and have already pretty much bought alot of the baby items she needs as well.

Her mother stated this morning to her to find a judge and to get herself emancipated and get the hell out of the house because she was sick of her and no longer wanted her there. Now this child cooks, cleans, does housework and watches her deadbeat sisters 3 children on a daily basis while they are doing thier partying.

All she wants to do is get out of it and raise her baby right. She know there has been a mistake and she is suffering daily for it. So anyway that we can help her we would be willing to do it.

Can we go to court with her and offer her a place to live and get her some home schooling started. I have a computer here for her to use etc. until she can get on her feet?

I would so much appreciate your help with this issue because I do not know the laws. But as a parent who has raised an upstanding young man who has stuck with her even though the child is not his. He does no drugs, alcohol, or smoking at all, does good in school. But we are just looking out for her best interest and we also know how much he loves her and he cannot stand to see her in this situation. So again thanks for your advise.


I'm a Northern Girl
From what you have posted I'm not sure an emancipation is necessary (nor do I think one would be granted). If you are willing for her to stay with you and her mother is willing to allow her to stay with you, emancipation is unnecessary.

The reason I say emancipation would probably not be granted is that in every state I've ever heard of, for a minor to be emancipated she needs to be able to COMPLETELY support herself without help. Emancipation does not mean simply being "divorced" from her parents and living with someone else; it requires complete self-sufficiency. That does not mean living with you; it means living on her own and supporting herself and her child. But that doesn 't mean no options exist; if she has her mother's permission to live with you that's all it would take.

You'll need to check with the school district with regards to the requirements for homeschooling, not to mention whether homeschooling will even be necessary. Many schools offer programs for teen mothers who are trying to keep up with their schoolwork while caring for their babies. Even if your town doesn't have one, a nearby town may be willing to admit her to theirs for a modest tuition. You might need to have temporary guardianship granted you by the court in order to enroll her.


Senior Member
myoung8143 said:
Can we go to court with her and offer her a place to live and get her some home schooling started. I have a computer here for her to use etc. until she can get on her feet?
Of course you can do that. However, since TN doesn't have an 'emancipation statute', the childs mother can simply demand that she return.

As a responsible adult, you can certainly take the child to the police and have her file a criminal complaint for her rape.


If you believe the girl is living in an unsafe situation with her mother and step father, then call CPS.


Junior Member
similar situation

Hello, I have a similar situation that I need help with. My brother died about 7-8 years ago from Krohn’s disease. His oldest son "Zack" now lives with his grand father (from his mother’s side) and his 2nd or 3rd wife. Zack’s mother has been a repetitive drug user since as far back as I can remember and at this time no one seems to even know where she lives. Last we heard it was somewhere in Mississippi but as of yet I am not able to contact her. Zack is in what I (and everyone in my family) believe to be a very unhealthy situation. The "step grand mother" is very controlling not only of Zack but also of her husband. In addition both "guardians" are smokers and smoke in the house. Zack does not smoke but is forced to breathe it in everyday. I live out of state in Atlanta and every time I come to visit my relatives in TN. and try to pick Zack up for a few hours I am told he has chores to do or is on restriction for some ridiculous reason. Most recently for Thanksgiving they wouldn’t even let him come to the door and called the police to force me to leave. Zack has asked me several times if he could come and live with me in Georgia. I have my own successful business and have had for just under 10 years and certainly have the means to support and take care of him and would eagerly do so but the "guardians" certainly will not just let him move with me and sign over the rights to do so. They would fight me tooth and nail. From what I have been told Zack has a great deal of land and inheritance that the "guardians" may or may not have access to. This may or may not be why they refuse to let him go. I just don’t know. They certainly do not have his best interest at heart. They treat him like a pack mule always doing the work around the house. He's not allowed to go anywhere or do anything except what they say. What can I do to get legal custody of my nephew? I am his closest living blood relative and he wants to live with me. He will be 16 in December of 2009. What should I do and where do I start?


I'm a Northern Girl
Next time, please start your own thread instead of attaching it to a four year old thread.

The only thing you can do is go to court and apply for custody. Someone who has experience with family court in TN can tell you what the procedure would be.

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