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Missouri Legal Ages Laws

State laws dictate what age an individual must be to get married, enter contracts, take out student loans, or make other legal decisions. Those under the "age of majority," or minors, are considered incapable of making such decisions in the eyes of the law.

The state of Missouri recognizes the age of majority as age 18. When a minor reaches age 18, they are considered an adult thereafter. 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 the legal age statutes in the state of Missouri.

Missouri Age Statutes: At a Glance

Learn more about Missouri's legal age laws in the following table and corresponding links to related topics.

Age of Majority

18 (Mo. Rev. Stat. § 431.055)

Eligibility for Emancipation


Contracts by Minors

Minors' Ability to Sue

  • Minors may sue if they are represented by a guardian, next friend, or court-appointed representative (C.R. § 52.02)
  • All people over the age of 18 may commence, prosecute, or defend their own name as the real party in interest (Mo. Rev. Stat. § 507.115)

Minors' Consent to Medical Treatment

  • Minors may consent if: married; treatment is for pregnancy, excluding abortion; venereal disease, drug or substance abuse (Mo. Rev. Stat. § 431.061)
  • In emergency situations, consent may be implied for a minor if an attempt to obtain consent would reasonably jeopardize the life, health, or limb of the minor, or would reasonably result in disfigurement or impairment (Mo. Rev. Stat. § 431.063)

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

21 (Mo. Rev. Stat. § 311.325.1)

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.

Research the Law

Missouri Legal Age Laws: Related Resources

Learn More About Missouri Legal Ages Laws from an Attorney

Whether you want to know more about emancipation laws, a minor's ability to enter into a business contract, or even get married, you'll want to speak with a Missouri legal expert to get the most up-to-date information. Doing a web search for the laws will only get you so far. If you have more complicated questions or need legal representation, talk to a family law attorney in Missouri today.

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