A person very close to me is in need of clarification. He is 20 and the female friend is 17. They both want to enter a consensual relationship but her father is against it . What is the law and can he get in trouble ?
The age of consent in Illinois is 17.
IF YOU FOUND THIS ANSWER "Helpful" or " The Best Answer" YOU CAN THANK ATTORNEY POWELL BY MARKING IT SO because Avvo awards the attorney points. MS. POWELL is donating her time and talent by answering questions to help those in need of legal information. This is NOT a consultation and in no way creates an attorney-client relationship. YOU SHOULD ALWAYS PERSONALLY CONSULT WITH AN ATTORNEY IN YOUR LOCAL AREA who has specific expertise in the area of law you are concerned about. Look up the avvo tab to find a local lawyer.
● Dating: There is no state in the US with laws against dating.
● Majority: A person becomes an adult at 18, the age of majority in most states. Exceptions are Alabama & Nebraska (19), and District of Columbia & Mississippi (21). Until then they are a minor (child), and their parents pretty much control their life, including whom they date. If the parents wish, they can report it to the police if someone interferes with their control. After reaching the age of majority, the new adult can date anyone, leave home against their parent's wishes, live where they want, associate with anybody they wish, pay their own bills and bail themselves out of jail.
● Sex and Dating a Minor: Dating a minor UNDER the age of consent -- without sexual contact -- is not illegal as long as the minor's parents/guardians are OK with it. Some state's laws allow minors who have reached the age of consent (16, 17, or 18 depending on which state) to legally engage in consensual sexual intercourse/contact with anyone the same age or older. And Romeo&Juliet exceptions might also apply. So dating -- with or without sexual contact -- a minor who is AT or OVER the age of consent is not illegal as long as the parents or guardians are OK with it. In either case, If they are not good with it, they could file police reports that result in charges of "Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor", "Interference with Parental Control" or something else (even Kidnapping) that might be appropriate in that particular state. They can also get a No Contact/Restraining Order/Order of Protection against the person. For example, In Mississippi, the age of consent is 16, but the age of majority is 21. A 20-year-old minor can legally consent to sexual contact. So with their parents' permission, it is perfectly alright. If the parents don't agree, they should wait until they are 21 to keep their lover out of trouble.
● Side note to the older person: Children often have "Romantic Love and Sex Fantasies" about their dates that they tell their friends or write down in a diary or journal. They may not be true, but can cause HUGE problems when parents find out about it and go to the police. Innocent guys are in prison because of stuff like this. Also, children often seek revenge when the adult drops them for another, and accuse them of rape.
● Sexting: Important Warning . . . If sexually suggestive photos of any person under 18 are taken and/or shared -- even if they are over the age of consent -- federal laws regarding production, distribution, and possession of Child Pornography come into play. There may be additional state laws that prohibit it, but the feds love to send child pornographers to prison.
● In general, to be completely legal, adults should not "date" minors.
PLEASE DO NOT PRIVATE MESSAGE ME with followup questions. Instead, you may make a comment below, which will be sent to me automatically. If you need an attorney to assist you, please search in your local area, or click the "Find a Lawyer" link at the top of the page. I am active on AVVO and answer questions only as a public service. I am an Attorney-at-Law, licensed to practice law only in the state of California. Unless we have both signed a formal retainer agreement you are not my client, and my discussion of issues does not constitute legal advice. Opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of those who hold other opinions.
Any consensual sexual activities between two participating persons over the age of 17 (unless the older one has a position of authority, mentorship over that 17 year old) are perfectly legal, however, the parent of that 17 year old may legally intervene and ban the 17 year old daughter from seeing that 20 year old until she emancipates at 18.
Also, the 20 year old may be criminally charged with child pornography in both federal and state courts with possession of child pornography if he receives and possess any nude images of any minor under the age of 18.
DISCLAIMER The opinion given above by the lawyer serves for educational purposes only and provides general information and basic understanding of the applicable law. Take notice that the answer above does not create an attorney-client relationship as this website is not intended to provide a case specific legal advice. Anyone using the site expressly consents that there is no attorney client privilege between any person and any attorney responding. Further take notice the site should not be used as a crude substitute for any professionally competent legal advice by a licensed attorney in the applicable jurisdiction. The attorney above attempted to provide a competent professional opinion, however, laws and applications change frequently and vary greatly in U.S. jurisdictions and locales, therefore, any information and opinions expressed above remain general in nature, and may not apply to specific, factual or legal circumstances related to one's present legal issues. Contact an experienced lawyer admitted to practice in the State to obtain comprehensive legal assistance before making an informed decision regarding a particular legal issue within an attorney-client privilege setting. Respectfully, Attorney Alexander Ivakhnenko, Chicago, Illinois
Our Rating is calculated using information the lawyer has included on their profile in addition to the information we collect from state bar associations and other organizations that license legal professionals. Attorneys who claim their profiles and provide Avvo with more information tend to have a higher rating than those who do not.What determines Avvo Rating?Experience & background
Years licensed, work experience, educationLegal community recognition
Peer endorsements, associations, awardsLegal thought leadership
Publications, speaking engagementsDiscipline