Prostitution is Not a Felony in the State of Texas

Prostitution is Not a Felony in the State of Texas

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Prostitution is a Felony and a Misdemeanor in the State of Texas

Prostitution is an age-old profession that’s frowned upon and illegal in most parts of the world. However, to the surprise of many people, in the state of Texas, prostitution is not considered a felony but only a Class B misdemeanor for prostitutes. 

As of September 1, 2021 – solicitation of prostitution is a State Jail Felony punishable by 180 days to 2 years in State Jail and up to a $10,000.00 fine. Except that the offense is:(1) a felony of the third degree if the actor has previously been convicted of an offense under Subsection (a) or under Section 43.02(b), as that law existed before September 1, 2021; or(2) a felony of the second degree if the person with whom the actor agrees to engage in sexual conduct is:(A) younger than 18 years of age, regardless of whether the actor knows the age of the person at the time of the offense;(B) represented to the actor as being younger than 18 years of age, or(C) believed by the actor to be younger than 18 years of age.

If you’ve been arrested on suspicion of prostitution, the Law Offices of Star Law, P.C. Criminal Defense can assist you. We will examine the circumstances of your arrest and create a defense plan to use in your case, fighting for the best possible outcome.

Read on to learn more about the legal implications of prostitution in Texas.

Understanding Prostitution Charges in Texas

Prostitution is a crime in Texas, as in all other states. When one person offers to engage in or engages in sexual conduct for money or another item of value, this is referred to as prostitution.

If you engage in or offer to engage in sexual behaviors/contact in exchange for money, you are breaking the law. It’s worth mentioning that committing this act does not require actual sex to take place, and there is no mention of prostitution needing to occur expressly for money.

The fee may include any asset, including drugs, valuables, or currency.

prostitute-receiving-money-from-businessman

Penalties for Prostitution in Texas

If this is your first offense and you are caught, the state will likely charge you with a Class B misdemeanor. The possible penalties for conviction include:

  • As many as 180 days in jail; or
  • A fine of $2,000

A second or third violation is a Class A misdemeanor, which entails greater fines and jail time. You may be sentenced to:

  • Up to 1 year in jail; and
  • A fine not to exceed $4,000.

If you are convicted of a fourth or subsequent offense, the state may charge it as a state jail felony, which could result in the following consequences:

  • Six months to 2 years in state jail; and
  • A fine not to exceed $10,000

If you agree to engage in sexual activity with someone younger than 18, you face second-degree felony charges for the first offense. This includes 2 to 20 years of jail and $10,000 in fines.

Why You Need a Defense Attorney for Your Prostitution Charges

A criminal conviction for prostitution can have a lasting and devastating effect on your life. To begin with, if you’re the solicitor, it’ll be charged as a felony. 

In addition to the fines and jail time, you may also lose your job, face eviction from your home, or be unable to get approved for loans.

Moreover, if you are not a United States citizen, a prostitution charge could lead to your deportation.

The good news is that you don’t have to go through this process alone. A criminal defense attorney can help you understand the charges against you and work to get them reduced or dismissed.

Here are some of the benefits of hiring a criminal defense lawyer:

  1. Legal Expertise 

While it’s possible to defend yourself in court, it’s not advisable. Instead, hire a criminal defense attorney as they have the knowledge and experience to challenge the prosecution’s case against you.

  1. Strategies 

A good criminal defense lawyer will review the evidence against you and work to develop a strong legal strategy. This may involve challenging the police’s stop or search, negotiating with the prosecutor for a plea deal, or taking your case to trial.

  1. Peace of Mind 

When you hire a criminal defense attorney, you can have peace of mind knowing that someone is in your corner, fighting for the best possible outcome in your case.

  1. Helps Investigate the Charges Against You

A criminal defense attorney will help investigate the charges against you. This may involve interviewing witnesses, reviewing police reports, and looking for holes in the prosecution’s case.

How to Choose a Criminal Defense Attorney

As you prepare your defense against prostitution charges, it’s vital to have the proper legal counsel. However, it’s not just about having a lawyer but one experienced with prostitution charges. 

So, here are some of the things you should consider when hiring an attorney:

  1. Experience 

When meeting with a potential lawyer, ask about their experience with prostitution cases. It’s essential to hire an attorney with extensive experience defending against these charges.

  1. Reputation 

In addition to experience, you should also consider the lawyer’s reputation. Ask around and see if anyone you know has used their services. Once you’ve narrowed down your options, look up online reviews to get an idea of what others have said about their experience.

  1. Professionalism

It’s important to hire an attorney you feel comfortable with. This means someone who is professional and will treat you with respect. 

When you meet with a potential lawyer, pay attention to how they interact with you and see if they make you feel at ease. If not, it’s probably best to move on to someone else.

  1. Good Communication Skills

It’s important to have an attorney who is a good communicator. This means they will update you on your case and return your phone calls promptly. 

Additionally, they should be able to explain the legal process in terms you can understand. If you don’t feel like your lawyer is communicating well, it may be time to look for someone else.

  1. Fees 

Finally, be sure to ask about the lawyer’s fees. While you want to find an experienced and reputable attorney, you also need one that fits within your budget.

When it comes to prostitution charges, it’s essential to have a robust legal defense. Hiring an experienced criminal defense attorney is the best way to ensure you can beat the charges against you.

If you or someone you know has been charged with prostitution, contact Star Law, P.C. today. Our team of experienced attorneys is ready to help you fight the charges and protect your rights.

Call us today at (214) 982-1408 to schedule a free consultation. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Prostitution a Felony in Texas?

For individuals engaging in the sale of sexual services prostitution charges qualify as a misdemeanor. However, if you’re the person buying such services it’ll be charged as a felony. 

What are the Penalties for Prostitution in Texas?

In Texas, the penalties of prostitution charges can include jail time, fines, and deportation.

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