Minnesota Age of Consent Laws 2017
What is the Minnesota Age of Consent?
The Minnesota Age of Consent is 16 years old. In the United States, the age of consent is the minimum age at which an individual is considered legally old enough to consent to participation in sexual activity. Individuals aged 15 or younger in Minnesota are not legally able to consent to sexual activity, and such activity may result in prosecution for statutory rape.
Minnesota statutory rape law is violated when a person has consensual sexual intercourse with an individual under age 16, although it is raised to 18 when the offender is an authority figure. If the younger party is 13-15, their partners must be no more then 2 years older, and children under 13 may only consent to those less than 36 months older.
Minnesota does not have a close-in-age exemption. Close in age exemptions, commonly known as "Romeo and Juliet laws", are put in place to prevent the prosecution of individuals who engage in consensual sexual activity when both participants are significantly close in age to each other, and one or both partners are below the age of consent.
Because there is no such "Romeo and Juliet law" in Minnesota, it is possible for two individuals both under the age of 16 who willingly engage in intercourse to both be prosecuted for statutory rape, although this is rare. Similarly, no protections are reserved for sexual relations in which one participant is a 15 year old and the second is a 16 or 17 year old.
Punishments for Violating the Age Of Consent in Minnesota
Minnesota has three statutory sexual abuse charges on the books which are used to prosecute age of consent and child abuse related crimes within the state. One or more of these charges may be used to prosecute violations of the Minnesota Age of Consent, as statutory rape or the Minnesota equivalent of that charge.
The severity of the criminal charge (felony, misdemeanor, etc) depends on the specifics of the acts committed and the relative ages of the perpetrator and victim. Click any charge for more detailed information.
|Communication of Sexually Explicit Materials to Children||Felony||Imprisonment for not more than 3 years, payment of a fine of not more than $5,000, or both|
|Criminal sexual predatory conduct||Statutory maximum sentence is 25% longer than for the underlying predatory crime or 50% longer than for the underlying predatory crime if the violation is committed by a person with a previous sex offense conviction. Person may also be sentenced to the payment of a fine of not more than $20,000.|
|Solicitation of Children to Engage in Sexual Conduct||Felony||Imprisonment for not more than 3 years, payment of a fine of not more than $5,000, or both|