UK & World News

  • 13 March 2014, 6:41

New Jersey Teen Who Sued Parents Returns Home

The New Jersey teenager who sued her parents to get financial support after she moved out of their home has reunited with them.

Rachel Canning's return did not involve any financial agreement or other considerations, the lawyer for the 18-year-old's parents said.

Angelo Sarno said the dispute had been settled "amicably", and the estranged teen moved back in with her parents on Tuesday night.

He said the notoriety surrounding the lawsuit damaged the family, and that they are now asking for privacy.

"This is a matter that should have been brought in some counsellors' office, not into a courtroom," Mr Sarno said.

"There's a long road ahead, this is not something that's going to happen overnight. ... The healing needs to begin."

A judge last week denied the teen's request for child support and to have her parents pay her remaining high school tuition.

State Superior Court Judge Peter Bogaard cautioned against such lawsuits, saying it could lead to teens "thumbing their noses" at their parents, leaving home and then asking for financial support.

"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?" he asked. "We should be mindful of a potentially slippery slope."

Miss Canning left her parents' house on October 30, two days before she turned 18.

Her sudden departure followed a tumultuous stretch during which her parents separated and reconciled and the teen began getting into uncharacteristic trouble at school.

In court filings, Miss Canning's parents, 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.

They say that shortly before she turned 18, she told her parents that she would be an adult and could do whatever she wanted.

She said in her lawsuit that her parents were abusive, contributed to an eating disorder she developed and pushed her to get a basketball scholarship.

The teen had been living with the family of her best friend. The friend's father, former Morris County Freeholder John Inglesino, was paying for the lawsuit.

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