Can my girlfriend get in legal trouble for having sexual relations with me

UPDATED: Dec 19, 2017

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Can my girlfriend get in legal trouble for having sexual relations with me

Hello, i live in New York. I’m 15 years old, male. i have a girlfriend that
recently turned 19. I’m scared that if we ever got caught having sex that she
could get in a lot of trouble. I don’t know if this matters, but i turned 15
before she turned 19, so technically she isn’t a full 4 years older than me.

Asked on December 19, 2017 under Criminal Law, New York


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Right now, she is committing a misdemeanor (the less serious kind of crime) called "sexual misconduct" (see NY Penal Law Section 130.20). It is illegal for an adult to have sex with someone under the age of 17. So yes, she could get in legal trouble.
Because you are at least 15, she may or may not be committing a more serious offense: it is a felony for a legal adult to have sex with someone your age unless the adult is less than 4 years old. Due to your birthdays, you may be technically not quite 4 yours apart, but generally, a 19-year-old is considered 4 years older than a 15 year old: if this matter were reported to the authorities, it may come down to prosecutorial or judicial discretion as to whether to treat her as less than 4 years older or as 4 years older.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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