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Kansas Legal Ages Laws

State laws dictate what age a person must be to get married, enter into contracts, take out student loans, or make other legal decisions. Those under the "age of majority," who are also legally known as minors, are considered incapable of making such decisions in the eyes of the law. The state of Kansas recognizes the age of majority as 18, with some exceptions. For example, if a minor gets married at age 16 or 17, they are automatically emancipated.

When a minor reaches age 18 in Kansas, they are then considered an adult. State laws also govern a minor's ability to become emancipated from their parents or legal guardians, give consent for medical treatment, purchase and consume alcohol, and other legal matters.

This article provides a brief overview of legal age statutes in the state of Kansas.

Kansas Age Statutes: At a Glance

The details of Kansas's legal age statutes are listed below. See FindLaw's section on Emancipation of Minors for additional articles and resources.

Age of Majority

  • Under Kan. Stat. Ann. § 38-101, the age of majority is 18.
  • Anyone that is married and 16 years of age or older is also automatically treated as having reached the age of majority.

Eligibility for Emancipation

  • Under Kan. Stat. Ann. § 38-101, anyone 16 years of age or older who is married is automatically emancipated upon marriage.
  • Under Kan. Stat. Ann. § 38-109, a minor can petition the court for emancipation. In Kansas, this is called a "Petition for Rights of Majority."

Contracts by Minors

  • Under Kan. Stat. Ann. § 38-102, contracts may be disaffirmed within a reasonable period of time after a minor has reached the age of majority.
  • Under the same statute, money and property must also have been restored prior to disaffirmation. At the same time, contracts are also always valid when a minor enters into them for necessities.
  • Under Kan. Stat. Ann. § 40-237, a minor may enter into contracts for insurance. However, they must also have the consent of their parent(s) or guardian(s) and the co-signature of a party over the age of 18.

Minors' Ability to Sue

Under Kan. Stat. Ann. § 60-217(c), minors may file lawsuits through a representative. If a representative is not available or cannot be appointed, a minor can file a lawsuit through a next friend or guardian ad litem.

Minors' Consent to Medical Treatment

  • Under Kan. Stat. Ann. § 38-123, a minor can consent to medical treatments for pregnancy-related issues, regardless of whether they are married.
  • Under Kan. Stat. Ann. § 38-123(b), a minor over 16 years of age may consent to hospital, medical, and surgical care.

Legal Age for Alcohol, Tobacco, or E-cigarette Purchase and/or Consumption

Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Emancipation and the Legal Responsibilities of Minors

Kansas has a legal process by which a person under the age of 18 can apply to become a legal adult. This process, known as the “emancipation of a minor," can allow a person under the age of majority to become responsible for their own decisions regarding education, health care, residence, and other matters. In Kansas, this process is known as a “Petition for Rights of Majority." Kansas statutes list no minimum age for emancipation, and courts have the discretion to decide emancipation cases in the minor's best interests. In criminal cases, minors will normally be treated as such until they turn 18 or they are emancipated, especially in age and status offenses.

More Resources for Kansas Legal Ages Laws

State legal age laws cover a variety of topics and scenarios. You can visit FindLaw's section on Family Law for additional articles and information on this topic. You can also consult with a Kansas family law attorney in your area if you would like legal assistance regarding a juvenile case or a family law matter.

Get Legal Help from a Family Law Attorney

The legal age laws give us guidelines regarding the legal age acceptable to engage in certain activities. However, there are times when the guidelines do not conform to your situation. Are you a minor contemplating marriage or emancipation? If you need clarification about how the legal age laws affect you, then you should seek legal help.

You can contact a Kansas family law attorney right away.

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