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Cowgirl Lawyer
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Experience:  Attorney for 22 years. General Practice, Labor/Employment, PI, WC, Criminal, Family.
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is it illegal to leave a 14 year old alone overnight

Resolved Question:

is it illegal to leave a 14 year old alone overnight?
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Cowgirl Lawyer replied 8 years ago.

To the best of my knowledge, the only states with legislation on this subject are Illinois and Maryland, to date. This is good and bad. Having a clear cut law allows a parent to know that they are safe, legally, in their decision to leave a child alone. But having no clear cut law allows a parent with an exceptionally mature child to leave that child alone when the child is ready. In states where there is no statute, there is no state involvement in the decision to leave a child alone unless tragedy strikes, in which case the parent will possibly be judged harshly with 20-20 hindsight. Therefore, in those without statutes, it is good to know the state's general guidelines in determining whether a child will be left alone for any period of time.

Connecticut law does not set a specific age below which children are not able to be left alone. Instead, cases would be based upon the specific and unique facts of each situation and each individual child. The Connecticut Department of Children and Families has posted parental guidelines about this subject on the web, Useful Information: Leaving Your Child Home Alone. It offers parents some factors to consider and things to do if they decide to leave their children home alone.

Good luck!

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Gloria M

Please be aware that my answer is not legal advice, it is merely informational and educational. Fees I receive for answering questions are paid for information, not legal advice. This forum is designed to provide only general information, to give you a basis of knowledge. You and I have not entered into an attorney/client relationship, and I am not responsible for your legal rights. The only way for us to be in an attorney/client relationship is if you have signed a written retainer agreement with my law firm, and I am only licensed to practice law in Illinois. You should consult with legal counsel in your area for specific information relevant to your situation.

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