Dating age laws pennsylvania

This offense is a second degree felony.

Pennsylvania Age of Consent Lawyers | LegalMatch Law Library

Indecent assault includes any sexual or intimate touching for the purpose of arousing or gratifying sexual desire. It is also a criminal offense in Pennsylvania for teachers, other school employees, and school volunteers to engage in sexual activity with school students who are under the care and control of the defendant.

State law requires—in addition to the applicable fines and prison time—that people convicted of certain instances of statutory rape must register as sex offenders. Minors are legally incapable of giving consent to having sex; so for example, if Jen, who is 15 years old, willingly has sex with Tony, her year-old boyfriend, Tony can face criminal charges, since Jen is not legally capable of giving consent in the first place. But if Jen and Tony are married and living in Pennsylvania, Tony need not fear criminal charges for having consensual sex with Jen.

The marital defense is a remnant of the marital rape exemption. However, if Tony were to rape Jen force her to have sex against her will , he would have no protection under the law even if the two are married. In Pennsylvania, there is a Romeo and Juliet exemption that prevents the prosecution of consensual sexual acts between a minor who is 13 or older and a defendant who is less than four years older.

Know PA’s Age of Consent

However, sexual contact with a child younger than 13 is always a serious crime, no matter the age of the defendant. A conviction for sexual intercourse with someone under the age of 13 can result in as many as 40 years in prison.

What Is The Age Of Consent?

Defendants accused of statutory rape often claim that they had no reason to know that their partner was underage. They may argue that the child said that he or she was of age, and that a reasonable person would have believed it.

Unlike in most states, in Pennsylvania mistake of age can sometimes be a defense. Laws can change at any time time. If you are facing a statutory rape charge, consider consulting with an experienced criminal defense attorney who regularly practices in your area. A lawyer can often negotiate with the prosecutor for a lesser charge or a reduction in penalties such as, for example, probation instead of prison time , and will know how prosecutors and judges typically handle cases like yours. The information provided on this site is not legal advice, does not constitute a lawyer referral service, and no attorney-client or confidential relationship is or will be formed by use of the site.

The attorney listings on this site are paid attorney advertising. In some states, the information on this website may be considered a lawyer referral service.

What is the Age of Consent for Sex in Pennsylvania?

Please reference the Terms of Use and the Supplemental Terms for specific information related to your state. Pennsylvania Statutory Rape Laws.


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  • Pennsylvania’s Statutory Rape Laws and Potential Penalties?
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Statutes governing Pennsylvania's age of consent, associated criminal charges, available defenses, and penalties for conviction. Statutory sexual assault includes sexual intercourse including genital, oral, or anal penetration, however slight with a child who 13, 14, or 15, when: Teachers and School Employees It is also a criminal offense in Pennsylvania for teachers, other school employees, and school volunteers to engage in sexual activity with school students who are under the care and control of the defendant.

Individuals aged 15 or younger in Pennsylvania are not legally able to consent to sexual activity, and such activity may result in prosecution for statutory rape. Pennsylvania statutory rape law is violated the de-facto age of consent law in Pennsylvania is actually 18 due to Pennsylvania's corruption of minors statute. This creates an interesting dynamic, as the laws allow teens aged 17 and 16 to consent to each other, but not to anyone 18 or older.

Pennsylvania Age of Consent Lawyers

Teens between 13 and 15 may or may not be able to consent to a partner less than 4 years older, because while they might not be affected by the statutory rape laws, they could be prosecuted under other offenses. Pennsylvania has a close-in-age exemption. A close in age exemption , also known as "Romeo and Juliet law", is designed to prevent the prosecution of underage couples who engage in consensual sex when both participants are significantly close in age to each other, and one or both are below the age of consent.


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  5. Depending on the situation, the Pennsylvania close-in-age exemption may completely exempt qualifying close-in-age couples from the age of consent law, or merely provide a legal defence that can be used in the event of prosecution. The Age of Consent ranges state-by-state from 16 to 18 years old across the United States. Click the map to view any state's age of consent laws. The age of consent in Pennsylvania is based on the following statutes from the Pennsylvania criminal code:. Pennsylvania has six statutory sexual abuse charges on the books which are used to prosecute age of consent and child abuse related crimes within the state.