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Is Being a Sugar Baby Illegal in Texas?

 Posted on September 26, 2022 in Criminal Defense

Midland Texas Sexual Offense LawyerPublic opinion regarding sexuality has changed dramatically in the past few decades. Websites where individuals can sell explicit photographs such as Onlyfans are increasingly popular. However, there is a fine line between selling adult pictures and videos online and meeting someone for paid sex. Chiefly, the former is legal while the latter is illegal. 

“Sugar relationships” are another increasingly popular means of making money, especially among young women. "Sugar babies" who offer companionship in exchange for money or gifts and the "sugar daddies" who provide these gifts often worry about the legal implications of their actions. They ask themselves questions like, "Is being a sugar baby the same as prostitution?" or "Can I go to jail for paying a sugar baby for sex?" The questions to these answers are not always easy to understand, and the sugar baby relationships often straddle the line between prostitution and a legal relationship. 

Sugar Relationships Especially Popular in Texas 

The term "sugar babies" usually refers to young women who date wealthy, older men. The men, called "sugar daddies" provide the women with expensive gifts, help them pay bills, or give them cash. The relationship model is especially popular in Texas. So much so that SeekingArrangement put the University of Texas at Austin at the top of its "Fastest Growing Sugar Baby Schools of 2015" list. 

Prostitution Laws and Sugar Babies

Texas law prohibits prostitution, which is defined as "the business of sexual intercourse or the solicitation of sexual conduct for a fee." Individuals charged with prostitution can face misdemeanor charges punishable by up to six months in jail for a first-time offense. Soliciting prostitution, or asking someone to engage in sexual conduct for a fee, is also illegal and can result in state jail felony charges for a first-time offense.

It can be hard to know when a sugar baby relationship crosses the line into prostitution. After all, buying a date flowers or helping a romantic partner pay his or her phone bill is certainly within the bounds of the law. People do this every day. The state cannot prohibit financial generosity between people who are dating each other. So, what separates a legal sugar baby relationship from an illegal prostitution transaction? 

In order to be considered prostitution, there must be an agreement or understanding between the two parties that sexual conduct will occur in exchange for money or something else of value. If there is no such agreement, then the relationship is not considered prostitution. When two people meet for the explicit purpose of having sex and one of those individuals is being compensated for the sex with money or gifts, this may be considered prostitution. 

Contact an Austin Prostitution Defense Lawyer 

The line between a sugar baby relationship and prostitution is extremely thin. If you have been charged with prostitution or solicitation, contact our experienced Austin, Texas prostitution defense attorneys as soon as possible. We know what you are up against and we are equipped to provide the tenacious legal advocacy you need. Call Morales Law Office, Attorneys at Law, PLLC. at 512-474-2222 today for a free, confidential consultation. 



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