The Age of Consent in Illinois

 Posted on December 11,2017 in Sex Crimes

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-35.jpgIn Illinois, as is the case in all other 49 states, lawmakers have established statutes that set the age at which an individual may legally give consent to participate in sexual activity. Violation of the age of consent, by one or both partners, can result in serious sex crime charges that carry severe consequences.

Sexual Abuse Laws

In nearly all cases, the age of consent in Illinois is 17, which means engaging in sexual activity with a partner 16 or younger will result in a range of charges, from a misdemeanor to a felony, under the state’s sexual abuse laws.

  • Charges for crimes ranging from sexual assault to first-degree rape may be applied.
  • Sentencing may include jail terms of one to 50 years in prison and registration as a sex offender.
  • In a case when the offender is in a position of authority or trust over the victim, such as a teacher, coach or clergyman, for example, the age of consent is raised to 18-years-old.
  • What if you just take your underage partner to another state where he or she meets the age of consent? Do not do that. You both remain bound by the age of consent law in your home state, and crossing state lines to engage in sexual activity may result in additional charges.
  • A parent who is aware of an underage sexual relationship may be charged with permitting sexual abuse of a child.
  • Sexual abuse laws in Illinois do not necessarily require participation in sexual activity to result in criminal charges. Acts such as grooming and solicitation of under age victims fall under this statutory category.

Romeo and Juliet

Illinois does not have a “close in age” exemption, sometimes referred to as a Romeo and Juliet Law, under which there may be circumstances when statutory rape charges may not apply. However, in Illinois, even if both partners consent and one or both are underage, a violation of the age of consent law has occurred and charges may be made against one or both parties.

Work with an Experienced Arlington Heights Sex Crimes Defense Attorney

The consequences of sex crime charges can impact one’s life in a number of ways, and for years following the events that led to the charges. To ensure you are treated fairly by law enforcement and prosecutors, retaining the services of a practiced and knowledgeable Illinois violent sex crimes defense lawyer makes sense. Scott F. Anderson, Attorney at Law, understands the sensitive nature of these situations, and uses a variety of resources to build an innovative and aggressive defense on your behalf. To schedule a free consultation call 847-253-3400 and get answers to all your questions.







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