Rachel Canning: Judge rules parents don't have to pay college fees of daughter who tried to sue them
Rachel has claimed claims her parents kicked her out of their property when she turned 18 and have refused to pay for her further education
Tim Walker is The Independent’s Los Angeles correspondent, covering entertainment and other concerns from the West Coast of the US. He was previously a features writer and the editor of the paper’s diary column. His first novel, Completion, is being published in January 2014.
Wednesday 05 March 2014
A New Jersey teenager who sued her parents for financial support after leaving home has lost the first round of her lawsuit. Cheerleader Rachel Canning, 18, sought $650 (£390) in weekly child support from her parents, the payment of the remainder of her tuition at her private high school, a fund for her future college tuition, and her lawyers’ fees.
At a family court hearing on Tuesday, Miss Canning was told her parents would not have to pay child support or her legal costs. The school has waived its fees until the case is settled. Judge Peter Bogaard warned that her suit could lead to a “slippery slope”, asking: “Are we going to open the gates for 12-year-olds to sue for an Xbox? For 13-year-olds to sue for an iPhone?”
Miss Canning claimed her parents threw her out in November 2013, when she turned 18, because they didn’t like her boyfriend. She said they refused to pay for her higher education, even after she received acceptance letters from several universities. In court filings, she alleged her parents were abusive, contributed to an eating disorder, and pushed her to get a basketball scholarship.
The Cannings, who have two other daughters, said they helped her through the eating disorder and paid for a private school where she would play less basketball than at a state-run school. Retired Lincoln Park police chief Sean Canning and his wife, Elizabeth, said their daughter voluntarily left home because she did not want to abide by reasonable household rules, such as being respectful, keeping a curfew, doing chores and ending a relationship with a boyfriend whom they believe is a bad influence.
“We love our child and miss her”, Mr Canning told New Jersey newspaper the Daily Record before the hearing. “It’s killing me and my wife. We have a child we want home. We’re not draconian and now we’re getting hauled into court. She’s demanding that we pay her bills but she doesn’t want to live at home and she’s saying: ‘I don’t want to live under your rules.’”
Miss Canning, who has been living with the family of her best friend, reportedly hopes to study biomedical engineering at the University of Vermont, which is thought to have offered her a scholarship worth $20,000 (£12,000). She still seeks a ruling to say she is non-emancipated from her parents, and that they therefore remain obligated to provide her with financial support. The case will return to court on 22 April.
Culinary experts in The Netherlands thought it was 'fresh' and 'tasty'
- 1 Marijuana use by teenagers does not result in a lower IQ or worse exam results, study finds
- 2 Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
- 3 Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes too far at the Q Awards
- 4 Australian café owner sparks debate after saying 'No' to having unruly children on premises
- 5 NHS staff banned from drinking tea or coffee on the job because it looks like they're not working hard enough
Renee Zellweger on plastic surgery: 'I'm living a more fulfilling life and I'm thrilled that perhaps it shows'
Kim Jong-un 'purge': Six North Korea officials missing for weeks 'may have been executed'
Diwali: What is the festival of lights – and how is it celebrated around the world?
Nathan Cirillo: Final pictures emerge of soldier moments before he was shot dead by Ottowa gunman
Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes too far at the Q Awards
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Support for EU membership 'at highest level since 1991' with most Brits wanting to stay 'in'
Thousands with degenerative conditions classified as 'fit to work in future' – despite no possibility of improvement
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
£300 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: SSRS Report Developer – 3 Mon...
£95 - £150 per day: Randstad Education Birmingham: Key Stage 1 teacher require...
£32000 - £39000 per annum + benefits + bonus: Ashdown Group: Generalist HR Man...
£18000 - £30000 per annum + uncapped: SThree: Do you feel like your sales role...