We have all heard the saying that “age is just a number,” or some similar sentiment. While that saying may be true for certain couples, when it comes to sexual relationships, age can become very important, and it can be the deciding factor as to whether or not you are committing a crime. Age of consent laws were enacted to prevent children and adolescents from being taken advantage of, and these laws differ from state to state. Violating age of consent laws can result in sex crime accusations, which should not be taken lightly, since they come with serious consequences.
What Is the Age of Consent in Illinois?
The age of consent refers to when the law determines that a person is able to consent to sexual acts. In Illinois, the age of consent is 17, meaning that if a child is under the age of 17, they cannot legally give their consent to a sexual act. If a child is 16 and willingly performs a sexual act with an adult, the other person can face criminal charges, because the 16-year-old is seen as not being mature enough to consent to such an act or not fully understanding the ramifications of such an act.
Charges for Violating the Age of Consent
While engaging in sexual activity with someone under the age of consent is commonly known as statutory rape, Illinois law does not use this term. There are a few different offenses you can be charged with if you engage in sexual acts with someone under the age of 17:...