Can parent take money/possessions from a child after age 18?

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Latest post 09-23-2009 10:47 PM by Drew. 8 replies.
  • 09-20-2009 12:40 AM

    • Dezzy
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    Can parent take money/possessions from a child after age 18?

    I live in PA, I'm 17 but will be 18 in 2 months.

    Can my parents legally take money from my bank account (joint account) or money I cash from a paycheck after age 18? Also, could they legally take expensive (or just any) possessions such as phone, computer, etc if I paid for them? Does my living in their home (after age 18) authorize them to do this with or w/o my consent?

    If this is not legal, would I have the ability to take legal action against them if my money is taken without my consent and not returned?

  • 09-20-2009 12:54 AM In reply to

    • Kivi
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    Re: Can parent take money/possessions from a child after age...

    First off, once you are 18, open a bank account at a different bank or credit union than the one that currently has your account.  At age 18, as long as you have proper ID, you should have no problem doing this one and you won't need a parent to be on the account.

    Then, deposit your paychecks into this account.  End of that problem.

    The best solution to parents messing with your stuff at the family home is to move out.

    However, if you continue to live at home, you eventually may be regarded as a tenant, especially if you are paying some kind of rent money to your parents.  That may give you certain legal rights.  However, once you are 18, your parents probably have the right to evict if you do not accept their terms for your "tenancy".  In other words, you do not have any right, apart from tenant landlord law, to live at home and tenant landlord law gives landlords the right to evict a tenant.  A valid eviction reason can be that your parent no longers want to be a landlord.  You typically would get 30 days to move out.

    In other words, if you are going to get into a tug of war with yoru parents about your legal rights, you need to be prepared for "the law of unintended consequences".

  • 09-20-2009 2:35 AM In reply to

    • Dezzy
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    Re: Can parent take money/possessions from a child after age...

    Thanks, and I will most certainly set up my own account in the next 2 months. I wanted to originally when I started working, but my dad forbid me to. He also will not give me my account number or pin.

    My parents keep telling me that as long as I live in their house, they still own all of my things, even though I paid for them, and even though I pay rent. Even after you're 18, they said it still applies because it's a parent-child relationship.

    I guess just basically, would I be correct in assuming that, after I turn 18, I legally own everything I pay for and the money I make.. and while they can "evict" me from home for such a stupid reason as this (or for no reason at all), they cannot take anything I own for any reason. Right? Regardless of whether or not I am in their house, and regardless of the fact that it's a parent-child situation.

    And I have set up some options in the event that they would kick me out with either my best friend or grandparents.

  • 09-20-2009 8:01 AM In reply to

    Re: Can parent take money/possessions from a child after age...

    "I legally own everything I pay for and the money I make.. and while they can "evict" me from home for such a stupid reason as this (or for no reason at all), they cannot take anything I own for any reason. Right?"

    That is correct.  You parents cannot suddenly claim possession of your laptop, Ipod, clothes. paychecks or anything else that you have earned on your own.  As a matter of fact they can't be taking your money now.  Kivi is incorrect on that one even as a minor.  They cannot charge you rent UNTIL you turn 18.  You could actually file a claim for the money your parents are stealing from you.  The ONLY time parents are entitled to a percentage of what a child earns is in the entertainment business when they act as the child's manager.  Your parents are not authorized to automatically "deduct" funds from your account to cover your living expenses merely "because we are your parents" and you are still a minor.  THAT may be illegal in your state and theft.  You can go down to the bank and get the pin yourself as the minor on the account and they have to give it to you. 

    You can also cash your paychecks on the bank the business uses and keep the money separate and only deposit a small amount. 

    If it were me I would go ahead and exersize one of those options.  It sounds like it is time to move out and start being an adult and living on your own.

    "That's just my opinion, then again I might be wrong."  Dennis Miller

     

  • 09-20-2009 12:22 PM In reply to

    • Drew
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    Re: Can parent take money/possessions from a child after age...

    Laymans take:

    You are probably in middle of a couple of bodies of law----if the account is JWROS it is entirely possible that the first person to go the bank can clear out the JWROS account!!   Now if you are on account you should not need a pin to access same-in person--and you can even use a check provide by bank to do so.

     

    Now there are separate issues under PA's bank code as to presumption of who made what percentage of deposits...but lets not go there.--

    Odds are you can clean out your account if you use some stealth and common sense!

    Odds are you can set up separate accountonly in your name and use same to deposit your paychecks.

    However in PA I believe parents can also give you the boot out the door if you play to hard a ballgame and your possible  status as a tenant is not at all that clear in PA.   Its a two way street.

     

    Plus I think as a holdover from old English law--which PA adopted centuries ago a parent is entitled to earnings of his minor child!  So be careful!



  • 09-20-2009 12:30 PM In reply to

    Re: Can parent take money/possessions from a child after age...

    Are you ready, willing, and able to move out on your 18th birthday, get your own place, your own car, buy your own car insurance, and support yourself without ever depending on your parents for ANYTHING.

    Well?

    Are you, ...?

    • The right of the people 
    • to keep and bear arms,
    • shall not be infringed.
  • 09-21-2009 9:22 AM In reply to

    Re: Can parent take money/possessions from a child after age...

    Or, you can be a totally cash consumer for the next couple of months.  Stop the direct deposit of your paycheck (if you have it) and cash your paycheck in total at a check-cashing place or the bank on which the check is drawn (you can usually do that for free or for a smaller fee than a check-cashing place would charge). 

  • 09-23-2009 9:22 PM In reply to

    • Dezzy
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    Re: Can parent take money/possessions from a child after age...

    adjuster jack:
    Are you ready, willing, and able to move out on your 18th birthday, get your own place, your own car, buy your own car insurance, and support yourself without ever depending on your parents for ANYTHING. Well? Are you, ...?

    Believe me, as hectic as things are at this house compared to most others, I am not boiling over with excitement to get kicked out. But things cannot continue as they are if I want to someday sustain myself independently. After I turn 18, I'm going to make some changes for myself, such as: I'll refuse to allow them to take my money unless I am paying them rent, in which case I will give the money to them. If they don't like this, they have every right to kick me out... in which case, no, I will not be getting my own place. I wouldn't be able to afford it because my parents have taken large portions of my money from the day I started working, and have told me they will empty the account before I turn 18, probably thinking I will be forced to stay. However, I have set up plans with either my best friend or grandparents... so I will be off to a rough start, but I'm sure I will end up much more productive in the long run with this course of action. I'm not moving out because I'm a rebellious teenager... if I'm kicked out of my house, though, I'm sure it will only end up being better for me.

     

    Sorry to rant, I just wanted to clear things up. I'm really not being that stereotypical "teenager." This is a serious problem. Anyway, I have one more question. The account holding whatever amount of money I possess is under my dad's name. Can he empty it whenever he wants and take the money before I turn 18? Or is that really illegal like ClydesMom said? Because he has threatened to do so.

  • 09-23-2009 10:47 PM In reply to

    • Drew
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    • Joined on 03-30-2000
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    Re: Can parent take money/possessions from a child after age...

    I'm not saying it makes sense but what is to prevent you from going to bank and you empty your own account--unless I'm missing something that should not be rocket science to do.

    But if money is in Dads account then in terms of control its not really your money any longer!

     

    Your earier post seemed to say it was joint account or did I misread.

     

    So stop turning over paychecks to dear old Dad?

     

    What are you plans for College or Armed Service?



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