Ariel Winter Emancipated: 'Modern Family' Star Thanks 'Amazing Support System'

Modern Family actress Ariel Winter has finally become emancipated from her mother after a lengthy legal battle.

Seventeen-year-old Winter, who portrays Alex Dunphy on the hit sitcom, took to her Twitter account to confirm that she has become emancipated, while also thanking those who have helped her through this arduous time.

Back in October, 2012, Ariel Winter's sister, Shanelle Workman-Gray, filed to become the legal guardian of Winter. Workman-Gray took this step because it was claimed that physical and emotional abuse had befallen Winter at the hands of her mother, Shanelle Workman.

On May 5, 2014, Gray received permanent guardianship of Winter, and the actress was removed from the guardianship of Shanelle Workman permanently. After this decision, Gray and Workman released a joint statement that read, "The family has moved beyond the conflict."

This followed claims in court that Workman had physically abused Winter. According to Pocono Record, an initial report from child protective service found evidence of emotional abuse, however the pursuit to find physical abuse proved to be inconclusive. Workman denies all of these claims, insisting, "I have never abused my daughter."

Winter's full message after she confirmed her emancipation from her mother heaped love and praise on her sister, as well as her father, Jimmy Workman, for helping her through this time.

"Most importantly I want to thank @shanelle_gray and my father for their special support regarding this matter, I really couldn't have done it without them.

"Thank you to all my family, friends, and fans who have supported me through all of my endeavors in life, and have encouraged me. Thank you for making my life so special! I can't wait to embark on my new adventures."

Just last week, Ariel Winter posted an emotional message to Instagram for her sister on Mother's Day thanking her for her care and attention, which highlighted the close bond between the pair.

[Image via Listal]