can you do this ?

My 17 yr old step son has a job he will be 18 in feb. can you make them help pay for there living expenses such as buy laundry soap, shampoo help pay for water bill ect..... not sure if this is legal because he is only 17 but he spends his money on stupid stuff the least he can do is help pay for some of the stuff he uses. Thanks

15 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    You sure can and you should! I was 17 when I started paying for rent in my parents house as well as my own personal items.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Once he is 18 (legally adult) you can require him to pay for such things. Personally, I would have him pay a set monthly or weekly amount...then place this money into a savings account. When he becomes more mature...give him the money (like for a down-payment on a car, college expenses, a trip...something worthwhile). This will teach him the rewards of saving, but will also teach responsibility for earning/paying for needs

  • 1 decade ago a 17 year old, He is still a child, and his parents are still required to care for provide soap, food, clothing ect. When he turns 18, you can charge rent....but I would advise against it...What I would do is sit down and discuss his cost of living, and reach an agreement on the things that he wants to be responsible for....clothes for example...He picks..he pays. A car..he insurance...he pays.....And I think both he and you would be surprised about his budget..and maybe he might realize what is important and what is not...But this should be approached as a learning process of a child moving into adulthood...not "pay up or get out".

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Be thankful that he works. Of course he spends money on stupid stuff. He is 17 years old. It could be worse: he could be out on the streets dealing drugs. I doubt that it is legal to take his money being that he is only 17 yrs old. I would hate for you to be my step parent. Wait until he is 18, and then tell him that he needs to start buying his own stuff. Until then, be a little supportive and let the kid have his fun.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Legally, and as a (hopefully ) loving parent, you are required to provide food, shelter, and medical care for this child until he is 18 years old. Once he turns 18, you can start asking him to help out financially with household expenses. If he chooses not to help out, you can choose to ask him to move out. In the meantime, ration his soap, shampoo, etc. if he is blowing is cash on stupid stuff. You can also refuse to buy those things for him if he is working and you believe he can afford to buy them for himself.

  • 1 decade ago

    I personally dont think you can make him at 17 but when he turns 18 you could write up a contract for him to agree with or move out. Maybe you could just hint around that he helps out and as a "man" he would do so willingly.


  • 1 decade ago

    My suggestion would be to calculate how much he owes per month from the water bill, electricity, etc.

    After he turns 18, tell him to pay up or move out.

    But I wouldn't touch his money until he turns 18.

    If you were 18, you wouldn't like that either. This time of young adulthood is his last chance to go through life without responsibility and get away with it. He'll have the rest of his life to have to pay his dues.

  • 1 decade ago

    Yes, it's legal, but it's usually not done until they are over 18 if they aren't in college. That's just a part of raising kids. Why don't you teach him to save half of his check? Just because he's a step son is no reason to charge him to live there.

    Source(s): JS
  • 1 decade ago

    Why a legal question? Is he challenging you on legal basis?

    Personally, I don't think you can make him pay for what is necessary for life, such as food, hygene, and other life essentials, but you can make him pay for anything extra.

    Perhaps it would be better if you supply them on those items you mentioned but refuse to buy him anything extra.

    I'm actually surprised you have to get an opinion on legality first.

  • When he's 18 you can tell him to either get out of the house or pay for whatever you require him to. He'll be an adult. Until then, you could garnish his pay, him being a minor and all.

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