When it comes to the application of law, certain exceptions are made due to the age of a person. This is to delineate minors from adults and the subsequent treatment of the law they are subject to. Thus, the age of majority is the age at which a person is no longer considered a minor.
A person who surpasses the age of majority or reaches the age of majority is treated as an adult. He or she must be treated in the same respect as an adult, and must deal with the consequences of his or her decisions as an adult. Thus, he or she is no longer under the control of his or her legal guardians or parents.
The age of majority is a legal distinction and varies depending upon the jurisdiction or the domicile of the person. The age of majority may be set by laws set by the national government or by the local government, a state or provincial government agency. It is common for the age of majority to be set at 18 years of age, however some jurisdictions consider 21 years old to be the age of majority. This age does not necessarily reflect the person’s mental or physical maturity because it is meant to merely be a legal term or definition.
Some activities such as purchasing and consuming alcohol or tobacco are defined by the age of majority. Voting and driving a motor vehicle also require that a person reach the age of majority.