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Im 16 years old and pregnant by my 21 year old boyfriend how can we legally keep the baby without him getting into trouble?

Pittsburgh, PA |

I am 16 years old and my boyfriend is 21 years old. I found out not too long ago that I am pregnant by him. He is supportive and we do want to keep the baby. My parents don't know yet and I think it's way better if they don't. Im trying to get emancipated but it looks like I don't qualify at the moment and don't have enough time. We need to do something fast because he could go to jail for this if the state finds out. We really need help FAST!!! Is there anything we can do to get out of this situation before it's too late? I want my child to know his/her father and can't raise this child without him. We need help!

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Attorney answers 2


Just so you know, your boyfriend could be charged and most likely, convicted, of statutory sexual assault. If an individual enages in consensual sexual conduct with another who is 16 or younger and they are 4 or more years older, they've committed statutory sexual assault.

That being said, I would imagine your boyfriend is not well liked by your parents? Your best bet is to be honest with your parents and level with them. I think the DA will take your relationship with the boyfriend into consideration and may not charge him with a crime. It all depends. If you hide it from your parents, I think there's a stonger likelihood that they will feel more strongly against him. This is a tough call and I don't want to play God with your life. You should consult with local counsel that can discuss this with the police or the DA before it snowballs.

Good luck!

There is no attorney client relationship created by this email. This response is provided for information purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice upon which one should rely for the purposes of litigation, establishing a course of conduct, or representation.


Getting emancipated will not necessarily solve the problem of statutory rape charges. The state will find out about the child either through a report by your parents, or perhaps from the hospital, although this is less likely.

Try to talk to your parents and get them on your side with the pregnancy and the relationship. This will make them 1. less likely to report the issue, and 2. less likely to ask the District Attorney to press full charges.

If you have a healthy relationship with your boyfriend, the District Attorney is likely to take that into account. Be prepared to show the Commonwealth that you do have a healthy relationship. I would recommend that your boyfriend consult a criminal defense attorney to try to take some pre-emptive steps.

Honestly, you should talk to your parents and have them and a criminal defense attorney talk to the District Attorney.

Best of luck,

Shannon K. McDonald

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