Minnesota dating a minor laws

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

This dropped the drinking age to 18 Laws of Minnesota , chapter , effective June 1, The legal drinking age was raised to 19 in Laws of Minnesota , chapter 66 , effective September 1, The drinking age was raised to the current age of 21 in Laws of Minnesota , chapter It included a grandfather clause: Minnesota Constitution , article 5, section 2 Other elective offices: Minnesota Constitution , article 7, section 6 Filing for primary; affidavit of candidacy: Minnesota Constitution , article 7, section 1 Additional information: Emancipation means that a minor has the same legal rights and obligations as an year-old adult.

The Minnesota Statutes do not provide either the grounds or a procedure for emancipation.

Minnesota case law has established that a minor can be emancipated by a legal marriage or by parental consent. For additional information see, Youth and the Law: It could mean jail time, it could mean having to register as a sex offender for 10 years.

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Minnesota Statutory Rape Laws

That means, for example, that teens as close as a 15 and a 17 year old or a 14 and 16 year old, depending on their birthdates, could be in violation of the law if their relationship becomes sexual in nature. And detectives have to investigate. Proof comes in the form of pregnancies, medical issues and digital communications that go public. Assistant Becker County Attorney Kevin Miller says when cases like this come across his desk, his decision to prosecute is typically already determined by the statute.

If the person being charged is an adult, they may be harsher. That is one, long-lasting possibility that can come back to haunt a young person for years, including not being able to live on a college campus, getting certain jobs and public shame. Today, most laws are gender neutral, and a number of women in authority positions such as Mary Kay Letourneau, Debra Lafave, Pamela Rogers Turner, and Pamela Smart have been prosecuted for engaging in sexual relationships with younger males.

Does the Punishment Fit the Crime? While many states have strict statutory rape laws on the books, prosecutors have been inconsistent in enforcing them, says Mark Chaffin, a researcher with the National Center on the Sexual Behavior of Youth. One particularly shocking case drew international attention when year-old Georgia resident, Genarlow Wilson, was charged with aggravated child molestation and sentenced to 10 years in prison for having consensual oral sex with a year-old girl.

Georgia law, which has since been changed to classify this act as a misdemeanor carrying a maximum penalty of one year in prison, also required Wilson to register as a sex offender when he was released. Are Statutory Rape Laws Outdated?


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Statutory rape laws are based on the premise that although young girls may want to have sex, they may not have enough experience or discernment to make a mature, informed decision. The laws are designed to protect young people who have less information and power than their and-over counterparts. For example, minors may be less likely than adults to understand sexually transmitted diseases, have access to contraception, and have the resources to raise a child if they become pregnant.

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Most people believe there is a clear line between young people wanting to date and have sex, and adults molesting or assaulting a child. And most would agree that the difference between intimacy and abuse should be reflected in the laws of each state. But not all parties agree on how strict the laws should be. Critics of strict statutory rape laws argue that while sexual relationships between teens relatively close in age may be morally questionable, prosecuting every case would unnecessarily clog up the justice system. But advocates of more diligent enforcement of statutory rape laws believe that the laws help combat the often underreported and hard-to-prove sexual abuse and rape of young girls.


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Others add that imprisoning men who are convicted of the crime could have a significant impact on teenage pregnancy and birth rates. Know the Laws in Your State Dating is a normal part of teenage life.

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