Consent is a tricky topic that has implications for everyone involved, as proving consent can often be a cornerstone to establishing whether or not a crime happened. When it comes to consent to any sort of sexual activity, Michigan, among other states, notes a specific age at which a young adult is finally legally capable of consenting to a sexual encounter.
Having an intimate encounter with someone below the age of consent can result in statutory rape charges. Anyone who has intimate interactions with someone under the age of consent could find themselves facing criminal charges as a result of that relationship.
Understanding the age of consent and verifying the age of partners may be the only way to avoid the potential headaches that come with allegations of crimes against minors related to statutory rape.
In most cases, the age of consent in Michigan is 16
When it comes to standard relationships, Michigan law makes it clear that the age of 16 is the age of consent. However, it is possible for there to be situations in which someone could still face statutory rape or other sexual crime charges despite the other partner being 16.
Situations involving mental disabilities in the younger partner may affect their ability to consent. Additionally, if there is a power dynamic in the relationship, that can also affect the age of consent. In a situation where one person has authority over the other, the younger person must be at least 18 years of age to consent. Additionally, regardless of the age of the student involved, it is impossible under Michigan law for a student to consent to a sexual relationship with their teacher.
If you’ve been charged with a crime related to the age of consent of your partner, it’s wise to get experienced legal advice as soon as possible. That will best protect your rights and your future.