Eighteen, the Magic Number

Age of Majority: This is the age when a person is no longer a legal minor and now has full legal responsibility. In Virginia, 18 is the age of majority.

But what does that even mean? Turning 18 does not come with a set of instructions. That is why the Virginia State Bar and the Conference of Local and Specialty Bar Associations created this handbook to help you understand some of your rights and obligations as an adult and to help you avoid some of the pitfalls facing young adults as you take on legal responsibilities.

So You’re 18 is intended to be an initial resource of information regarding basic law-related references and a good summary of the various legal issues you may encounter. However, if you have more detailed questions about a particular subject or if you need legal advice about a specific case, you should contact an attorney to discuss your specific issues. Remember that the law changes over time. The information in So You’re 18 was accurate at the time of publication, but may change in the future.

Many thanks to the following individuals and organizations for their assistance in updating this year’s So You’re 18: Walt Latham, voter registrar for York County and Arielle Schneider and Brooks Braun of the Virginia Department of Elections; Prescott L. Prince, secretary of the VSB’s Military Law Section; Alan McGraw (chair), Chuck Lollar (chair-elect), Barbara Anderson (immediate past chair), Sandra Chinn-Gilstrap, Dan Frankl, John Merrick, Christine Mougin-Boal, Luis Perez, Dillina Stickley, Reiss Wilks, and Beth Duffie (former member) of the CLSBA Executive Committee.

So You’re 18 is published yearly, so check us out online at vsb.org/site/publications/sy18 for updates and contact us to share your ideas. Let us know what you would like to know more about and what you think should be in this book. You can get the word out online with #SY18.


Information is power. Share it.

Information is power. Share it!