AGE OF MAJORITY; JUVENILES;

AGE OF MAJORITY;

OLR Research Report


January 28, 2003

 

2003-R-0071

VARIATIONS FROM THE AGE OF MAJORITY IN CONNECTICUT

By: Lawrence K. Furbish, Director

You asked for a list of the ages at which various rights, responsibilities, and privileges take effect in Connecticut. Your interest was in how many ages are different from age 18, the age of majority in Connecticut.

SUMMARY

While the age of majority in Connecticut is 18, we identified 19 examples of higher ages for certain rights, such as drinking, becoming a police officer, having a gun permit, or receiving care and support in certain situations. We found 21 examples where the age was lower, such as certain types of employment restrictions, obtaining a driver’s license, hunting and fishing without a license, and being charged with a crime in the same way as an adult.

AGES OF RIGHTS, PRIVILEGES, AND RESPONSIBILITIES

The age of majority in Connecticut is 18, and this is the age at which any person “shall be an adult for all purposes whatsoever and have the same legal capacity, rights, powers, privileges, duties, liabilities and responsibilities as persons heretofore had at age twenty-one years of age” (CGS 1-1d). Table 1 lists all of the exceptions to this general rule we were able to find. It shows the age, briefly describes the right or responsibility, and gives a statutory citation when there is one. They are not listed in order of significance.

Table 1

Age

Right or Responsibility

Statute

16

Obtain a driver’s and motorcycle operator’s license

CGS 14-36

16

Register a motor vehicle (but only with parental consent)

CGS 14-14

21

Hold a commercial driver’s license and haul hazardous materials or operate interstate

Federal requirement

21

Purchase and consume alcoholic beverages

CGS 30-1

15

Contract for life, health, or accident insurance

CGS 38a-184

17

Donate blood without parental consent

CGS 19a-285a

17

Must obtain a license to hunt and fish on public lands

CGS 26-16

12 to 16

May only hunt in the company of a licensed adult

CGS 26-38

12

May operate a motor boat above 10 horsepower without accompanying adult

CGS 15-140h

12

All minors can receive treatment for venereal disease without parental consent. Doctors have to inform authorities when one under 12 seeks treatment

CGS 19a-592

16

Until this age, women must receive specific pregnancy information and counseling before obtaining an abortion

CGS 19a-601

16

Family With Service Needs (FWSN) programs for status offenders

CGS 46b-120

16 & 17

Youth in Crisis – special program for youth to old for FWSN

CGS 46b-120

16

Certain restrictions on what kind and hours of work someone can be paid for

CGS 31-23

14 & 15

Other work restrictions

CGS 31-23

21 (or high school graduation)

Schools must provide special education

CGS 10-76d

21 (or high school graduation)

Provide transportation to school

CGS 10-97, 186b, and 277

Over 21

Board of Education and Services to the Blind may pay for schooling

CGS 10-295

21

Become a police officer

CT Agency Reg. 7-294e-16

21

Obtain a gun permit

Dept. of Public Safety policy

21

Eligibility certificate to possess handgun

CGS 29-36f

21

Age for prohibition against illegally transferring guns to minors

CGS 29-34b

16

Age for minor under gun storage responsibility law

CGS 37i

16

End of basic juvenile court jurisdiction

CGS 46b-120

16

Age of consent for sexual relations (with various exceptions depending on status of partner)

Various

19

Court-ordered child support, if in high school and living with parent

CGS 46b-84(b)

23

Court-ordered post-majority educational support

CGS 46b-56c

21

Court-ordered support for persons with mental retardation or disability

CGS 46b-84(c)

16 & 17

Youthful Offender program for first-time criminal defendants

CGS 54-76b

19

Temporary Family Assistance eligibility for children still in high school

CGS 17b-75

19

HUSKY B health insurance for uninsured kids and youth covers until age 19

CGS 17b-290

21

HUSKY A generally ends at age 19 but can go to 21 for kids living with parents under some circumstances

CGS 17b-261

19

KidCare mental health program

PA 01-2, June Special Session

21

Department of Children and Families (DCF) services to kids committed to them and in foster care or other commitment while in school

CGS 17a-93(a)

21

DCF can voluntarily continue care and supervision if status will benefit person

CGS 17a-11(d)

LKF: ro