Vermont Age of Consent Laws 2023
What is the Vermont Age of Consent?
The Vermont 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 Vermont are not legally able to consent to sexual activity, and such activity may result in prosecution for statutory rape.
Vermont statutory rape law is violated when a person has consensual sexual intercourse with an individual under age 16. There are exemptions when the partners are married or if the older party is under age 19 and the younger party is at least 15 years old. The age if consent rises to 18 if the offender is related to the victim or if the minor is in a position of authority over the victim.
Vermont has a close-in-age exemption. A close in age exemption, also known as "Romeo and Juliet law", is designed to prevent the prosecution of underage couples who engage in consensual sex when both participants are significantly close in age to each other, and one or both are below the age of consent.
Depending on the situation, the Vermont close-in-age exemption may completely exempt qualifying close-in-age couples from the age of consent law, or merely provide a legal defence that can be used in the event of prosecution.
The age of consent in Vermont is based on the following statutes from the Vermont criminal code:
Vermont Age Of Consent Law: §3252(c) No person shall engage in a sexual act with a child who is under the age of 16, except: where the persons are married to each other and the sexual act is consensual; or where the person is less than 19 years old, the child is at least 15 years old, and the sexual act is consensual. However it rises to 18 if the person is related to the minor or in a position of authority over him. (d) No person shall engage in a sexual act with a child who is under the age of 18 and is entrusted to the actor's care by authority of law or is the actor's child, grandchild, foster child, adopted child, or stepchild.
Punishments for Violating the Age Of Consent in Vermont
Vermont has six 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 Vermont Age of Consent, as statutory rape or the Vermont 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.
|Aggravated human trafficking||Felony||A maximum of life in prison and/or a maximum fine of $100,000|
|Aggravated sexual assault||Felony||A maximum of life in prison and/or a maximum fine of $50,000|
|Aggravated sexual assault of a child||Felony||25 years-life, and/or a maximum fine of $50,000|
|Lewd or lascivious conduct with child under 16||Felony||Maximum of 15 years in prison|
|Sexual assault||Felony||3 years-life, and/or a maximum fine of $25,000; A maximum of 20 years, and/or a maximum fine of $10,000|
|Sexual exploitation of a minor||Felony||Maximum of 5 years in prison, and/or a maximum fine of $10,000|