Most states provide that the majority age for individuals is 18. Alabama is different. In Alabama, the age of majority is 19, not 18. See Alabama Code Section 26-1-1 – “Age of Majority Designated as 19 Years”. Most people do not realize this is the case.
In personal injury cases, this issue arises fairly often. If the person injured is 18, that person’s parent or legal guardian must sign the attorney contract and must bring the lawsuit on behalf of their child. However, there are certain circumstances where the disability of nonage (being under the age of 19) can be removed, and the child can be treated as an adult.
The minor can have disability of nonage removed under the following situations:
1. The father or mother petitions the court;
2. The minor petitions the court to remove the disability because she has no father, mother, or guardian, or because the only living parent is insane;
3. The minor is 18 and married; and
4. The minor’s disability of nonage was removed in another State, and the minor files that judgment of record in the probate office.
These are technical issues, but they can become important when accidents and injuries occur to minors.