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Juveniled Justice System Structure & Process
Jurisdictional Boundaries
Q: Are emancipated juveniles tried in the adult criminal justice system?
A: Not always. Of the 36 states that have statutory emancipation procedures, juvenile emancipation implies automatic adult status and trial in the criminal justice system in 5 states (Connecticut, North Carolina, Oregon, Vermont, Wyoming).

Juvenile Emancipation, 2011

State Allow
juvenile emancipation
Emancipation implies
adult status
Emancipation does not
imply adult status

Number of states 36 5 8

Alabama X
Alaska X
Arizona X

Arkansas X X
California X
Colorado X

Connecticut X X
Delaware
District of Columbia

Florida X
Georgia X
Hawaii* X X

Idaho
Illinois X
Indiana X X

Iowa X X
Kansas X
Kentucky* X

Louisiana X
Maine X
Maryland

Massachusetts
Michigan X
Minnesota

Mississippi X
Missouri* X
Montana X

Nebraska
Nevada X X
New Hampshire

New Jersey
New Mexico X
New York

North Carolina X X
North Dakota
Ohio* X

Oklahoma X
Oregon X X
Pennsylvania

Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota X

Tennessee X
Texas X
Utah X X

Vermont X X
Virginia X
Washington X X

West Virginia X X
Wisconsin
Wyoming X X

*These 4 states have limited emancipation procedures.

  • Juvenile emancipation is a legal mechanism by which a juvenile is freed from parental or guardian control.
  • States differ in their policy and procedures for emancipating juveniles. Thirteen states and the District of Columbia have no statutory emancipation procedures.
  • An "X" in a column denotes that the state explicitly addresses emancipation in statute. States that do not have an "X" may have practices that are related to the status of emancipated juveniles; however these practices are not explicitly addressed in statute.

Internet citation: OJJDP Statistical Briefing Book. Online. Available: http://www.ojjdp.gov/ojstatbb/structure_process/qa04126.asp?qaDate=2011. Released on September 24, 2013.

Developed for the State Training and Technical Assistance Center by the National Center for Juvenile Justice (NCJJ), with funding from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP), Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. The following NCJJ staff contributed to this state profile: Sean Addie, Teri Deal, Kathy Firestine, Anne Fromknecht, Hunter Hurst, Anne Rackow, Crystal Robson, Linda Szymanski, Lauren Vessels, and Andrew Wachter.

 

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