At What Age Can A Child Stay Home Alone

At What Age Can A Child Stay Home Alone - Lawyers - Family

For working parents or single parents there may come a time when your child needs to be at home alone.  These children must be mature and ready to handle being left alone.  It requires a lot of strength and trust on behalf of the parent to leave their child at home alone.  So, at what age can a child stay home alone? The specific age a child can stay at home is highly debated.

Factors to Consider

1)     Legal Restrictions: States like Illinois and Maryland have guidelines as to what the minimum possible age is for a child to stay home alone.  You should research the laws in your state, county, or city to make sure you are abiding all of the laws.  If you leave your child alone at home and they are not legally considered old enough, then you could face charges for child abuse or neglect.

2)     Age: You also need to consider the age of your child.  According to generally accepted guidelines no child under the age of 6 should be left alone for extended periods of time.  Even kids older than this need to be considered on a serious level before being left alone.

3)     Maturity: Maturity plays a big role in deciding when it is acceptable to leave your child alone at home.  Some children can handle themselves with more responsibility at a younger age than others.  Many people feel as though girls are more adept to take care of themselves at younger ages than boys.  While girls in general mature faster than boys, it is important to consider the maturity of the individual child.

4)     Circumstances: One last thing you should think about when deciding whether or not to leave your child at home alone is the circumstances. You should consider how long you will be gone, if there is someone close who could check in on them, and if there are emergency plans set.  Leaving your child at home alone is a personal choice so you should weigh your options and think about it seriously.

Further Questions?

If you have more questions about leaving your child alone at home you could speak to a reputable lawyer.  A family lawyer will be able to give you all of the legal details you need to make the best decision for your family. TalkLocal can find a lawyer for you! We’ll connect you with up to three lawyers in your area, so you can get the help you need, when you need it.

2 Responses to “At What Age Can A Child Stay Home Alone”

  1. Luccinda Anderson says:

    We can’t pinpoint the age when it is to leave kids’ home alone. There are so many variable reason parents need to consider when leaving kids alone. Parents should need to consider the maturity level of their children, how far they will be going while they are out, the type of neighborhood they live in, and so much more. There are some young children that can be trusted and some are not, it depends how they are trained by their parents to be responsible enough to take care of their siblings. What’s the most important is that parents should also evaluate their children if they are capable of leaving or not and set a solid list of rules to followed by them. I have 2 kids ages 7 and 9 and I used to leave them home alone most of the time because I trained them to be responsible when they are alone. I also provided them this cell-phone based safety service for their protection. Just pressing a button they can notify and alert friends, family and myself. If needed, the call will be routed to the nearest 911 dispatch. We can do better by protecting our children.

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