Age of Majority

Russian law distinguishes the ability to have civil law rights (the legal capacity or «гражданская правоспособность») and the capacity to obtain such rights by own actions (the dispositive capacity or «дееспособность»).

The legal capacity — the ability to own property, have rights and duties — arises at the time of birth and is terminated by death (art. 17 of the Civil Code). The dispositive capacity arises in full with the attainment of the age of majority.

In Russia the age of majority is 18 (art. 21 of the Civil Code). After reaching the age of majority, a person is permitted to enter into binding contracts and make a valid will. Also, parents may stop making child support payments when a child reaches the age of majority. The dispositive capacity can be obtained before the age of majority through marriage. A married person obtains the dispositive capacity in full from the time of entry into marriage.

Minors of the age six to fourteen years can conduct small consumer transaction (art. 28 of the Civil Code). Those between fourteen and eighteen years may enter deals with the written consent of their legal representatives — parents or guardians (art. 26 of the Civil Code).