Hello again. It sounds to me like your ex-wife is trying to get ahold of your son AND his social security check (if that check wasn't coming in every month for him, your ex probably would not be interested at all). My take on this situation is that you are more likely to get a custody request from your ex wife than an emancipation request from your son.
In order for a court to approve a full emancipation for your son, he will have to show the court that he is fully self supporting and able to take care of himself. The small check that you receive every month from social security is no where near enough for him to actually live on, and a judge will know that approving an emancipation request from your son will likely end up with your son receiving social welfare assistance and becoming a public charge. If your wife and/or you actually agree to permit this "emancipation" request to go forward in front of a judge, the more likely result will end up being a huge investigation from the Department of Children's services to find out where the problems are in this relationship (is Mom encouraging this?) and if he is persistent, both he and the social security check will end up in foster care.
My suggestion here is that if you do get an emancipation request from a court (you would have to be notified of any court hearing), that you simply appear and oppose the petition (show the court that there is no abuse or neglect and for some reason he has it in his head that if he is "emancipated" he will receive the social security benefits directly, which idea is probably being encouraged by his mother -- who does not have custody of him for obvious reasons). At the hearing, if the court has questions, tell them that you have no problem with the court appointing a Guardian ad Litem (GAL) to investigate the matter and report back to the court. A GAL is a lawyer or psychologist appointed by the court to "represent" your son -- and that person will review your son's living arrangements, speak to the school, any counselors, neighbors and both you and your ex wife and the GAL will try to get to the bottom of what is really going on here with your son -- and then the GAL will issue a written report back to the Court regarding his/her findings and whether or not emancipation is a valid option in this situation.
Even if, by any stretch of the imagination, his petition for emancipation is successful, you should then file an objection with social security regarding the disability check that he receives every month. Whether he is "emancipated" by a court or not, because he is underage and will have to live with someone (either you or your ex), social security will still be looking for a conservator to pay the checks to (an adult in his life) -- and if he does live with his mother, she will be looking to be appointed as that person -- but you can throw a monkey wrench into that because with your situation being as messy as it is with your kid claiming "emancipation", social security can appoint their own conservator of his check -- someone who actually handles the monies of social security recipients and is paid a fee to do so (local lawyers are appointed to these roles all the time), so that the money actually goes to his care and support and not into Mom's pocket every month. So, if your son does end up at his mother's -- whether emancipated or not -- because the social security disability benefits come from you and your status as a disabled person, you can simply object to the payment of the benefits for him to his mother and social security will take it right out of Mom's and his hands and appoint a conservator of their own to manage the funds each month.
Please let me know if you have more questions.
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Edited by Mary M Esquire on 8/1/2010 at 5:53 PM EST