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Is adult incest illegal?

Brooklyn, NY |

If so what are the charges or penalties that can be filed against the couple?
Can they have a child together? Brother & sister incest.

Attorney Answers 3


  1. It is absolutely a crime. I believe it's section 255 of the NY Penal Law. I'll try to copy the laws for you and discuss possible punishment when I get to a computer. Also do not post any specific facts in a public forum as they may not be privileged or confidential. Feel free to contact me directly at 212-385-8600 to discuss.


  2. It is a crime governed by several sections of Article 255 of the Penal Law and can be a felony.

    I am a former federal and State prosecutor and now handle criminal defense and personal injury/civil rights cases. Feel free to check out my web site and contact me at (212) 385-8015 or via email at Eric@RothsteinLawNY.com. The above answer is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.


  3. The crime of incest is prohibited by three different Penal Statutes PL 255.25, 255.26 and 255.27 which are class E, D and B Felonies respectively. The penalties will vary depending on which statute applies to the facts and the defendant's criminal history. I suggest you should discuss this matter with a New York City criminal defense attorney. The relevant Penal Statutes are copies below:

    A person is guilty of incest in the third degree when he or she marries or engages in sexual intercourse, oral sexual conduct or anal sexual conduct with a person whom he or she knows to be related to him or her, [fig 1] whether through marriage or not, as an ancestor, descendant, brother or sister of either the whole or the half blood, uncle, aunt, nephew or niece.
    Incest in the third degree is a class E felony. PL 255.25.

    § 255.26. Incest in the second degree

    A person is guilty of incest in the second degree when he or she commits the crime of rape in the second degree, as defined in section 130.30 of this part, or criminal sexual act in the second degree, as defined in section 130.45 of this part, against a person whom he or she knows to be related to him or her, whether through marriage or not, as an ancestor, descendant, brother or sister of either the whole or the half blood, uncle, aunt, nephew or niece. Incest in the second degree is a class D felony. PL 255.26.

    § 255.27. Incest in the first degree

    A person is guilty of incest in the first degree when he or she commits the crime of rape in the first degree, as defined in subdivision three or four of section 130.35 of this part, or criminal sexual act in the first degree, as defined in subdivision three or four of section 130.50 of this part, against a person whom he or she knows to be related to him or her, whether through marriage or not, as an ancestor, descendant, brother or sister of either the whole or half blood, uncle, aunt, nephew or niece. PL 255.27. Incest in the first degree is a class B felony.

    This communication does not constitute legal advice and is provided for informational purposes only as I am not your attorney and you are not my client. Should you wish to obtain legal advice, you may contact my office at (212) 689-4343. This is attorney advertising.

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