The NCSL Blog


By Rich Williams

Yesterday, South Carolina enacted a new law (S.B. 916) to raise the age of juvenile court jurisdiction from 16 to 17.

Age of junvenile jurisdiction map.The upper age of juvenile court jurisdiction determines whether youth, for certain crimes, will be tried in adult or juvenile court.

On the same day, Louisiana lawmakers sent similar legislation (S.B. 324) to their governor, who has stated his intention to sign it. Louisiana and South Carolina are the 42nd and 43rd states to set the upper age limit at 17, and also the fifth and sixth to raise the age in the last seven years.

For more information on the age of juvenile court jurisdiction, please visit our resources:

Rich Williams is a policy specialist in NCSL's Criminal Justice program.

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About the NCSL Blog

This blog offers updates on the National Conference of State Legislatures' research and training, the latest on federalism and the state legislative institution, and posts about state legislators and legislative staff. The blog is edited by NCSL staff and written primarily by NCSL's experts on public policy and the state legislative institution.