Age of Consent
Age of consent in the Union of Everett specifies the legal age in which a person may consent to intimate or sexual contact and activities with another person. Age of consent is regulated under federal law and requires a somewhat complex level of rules for consenting to sex. The official national age of consent, similar to most western nations, is set to 16 years of age. Generally, this means that a 16 year old person may consent to sexual activity with anyone of his or her age or older. 16 is the base age of consent but several exceptions and additional laws exist. Firstly, a 16 year old may not consent to pornographic employment. Federal and nearly all international law requires a minimum age of 18 to perform pornographic or nude photography or videography. Secondly, although a 16 year old may consent to sexual activities with anyone 16 or older, it is not legal for a person older than 35 to engage in sexual activity with a person within the age range of 16 or 17 years. Thirdly, to prevent "child sex offender" phenomenon from occurring, a situation when a minor (under the age of 18), has relations with another minor (younger than the legal age of consent, 16), which would be considered illegal, a legal buffer zone exists in law. While age of consent is 16, a minor younger than 16, within 4 years age difference may legally consent to engaging in activity with a 16 year old or older, as long as both parties are within the 4 year age difference buffer zone. For example, a 13 year old with a 17 year old or a 14 year old with an 18 year old or 15 with 19, until both parties reach the legal age of consent of 16 and 20.
Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual (LGBT) persons are entitled to full legal rights and protections regarding equality within the Union of Everett. Since 2003, when the Union of Everett ceded from the United States, LGBT people were provided full protections under federal laws such as protection from discrimination in public and private including employment, housing, education, healthcare and protections from hate crimes. Laws such as the Everetti Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) were passed by 2004, ensuring such protections and rights to LGBT people. While individual states did not recognize same sex marriage, in the 2004 the federal government passed federal recognition of same sex and transsexual marriages and began licensing marriages federally. Gays and lesbians serving the military were protected from discharge from service in 2003 under Presidential order as Commander-in-Chief and later was passed as a law, repealing the United States' old, Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy. Between 2003 and 2006, the majority of LGBT people acquired full legal rights and protections as heterosexual and non-transgender people under federal laws. Up into 2011, individual states were encouraged by the federal government to pass their own laws ensuring state level protections, even though federal law already provided such rights and protections.
In 2003, the Union of Everett passed federal law negating all state laws and statutes pertaining to sodomy, the practice of anal sex. The law decriminalized nationally all forms of sodomy legislation and effected southern and mid-western states primarily, who some of which maintained anti-sodomy laws. The United States the same year, also passed federal law, overturning all anti-sodomy state level laws. The same year, the federal government passed federal law, allowing LGBT people to donate blood and organs, reversing the 1985 law banning men who had sex with men (MSM) from giving donations.
Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transsexual children are entitled to several specific rights and legal protections. LGBT minors have the right to freedom of expression, including the right to express their sexual orientation and gender identity openly, whether at home, in public or private, at work or at school. Minors have the right to go to school and be open with their sexual orientation and gender identity without the threat of facing bullying or hate crimes and the legal right to protection from discrimination by school officials, especially discrimination faced by transsexual minors who go to public or private schooling. Sensitivity training is required by federal law through Department of Education regulations over the school system, for all teachers, officials and employees of schools. LGBT minors also have the freedom to express themselves without interference by parents including protections from abandonment, neglect, domestic violence, abuses and criminal actions of parents or legal guardians. Foster care homes and government facilities are even more regulated to respect a child's sexual orientation or gender identity.
Abortion & Contraception
Abortion although currently a highly debated subject in state politics and during times of the Federal Assembly of States, it is currently legal under special provisions as per federal laws. To have an abortion performed, one must be under the age of 14. No specific reason is required to have an abortion performed on mothers age 14 or younger. Persons aged 15 to 18 may legally have an abortion performed as per federal abortion standards in federal code which states, "shall be legal unless heartbeat and or neurological function is detected". Law mandates that an abortion is illegal to perform if a heartbeat or neurological function is detected in the fetus. Adults aged 19 or older are not legally allowed an abortion unless for three reasons including, confirmed deformation of the fetus within the womb which would threaten the ability of the child to live, confirmed health threat to the safety of the mother when giving birth or confirmed mental or other deformation in growth and development issues which will result in a child who suffers from significant impairing mental disability including retardation. Mothers between the ages of 15 and 18 may also have an abortion passed the six week limit for these three reasons. An additional two legal reasons for abortion at any time include conception through rape and conception through incest.
Although debated by conservatives, contraception, devices or medications designed to prevent pregnancy, is completely legal federally and is considered a right of both men and women. Male forms of contraception include condoms and surgical or non-surgical vasectomies. Female forms of contraception include morning after pills, birth control, insert-able devices or surgical tubal ligation. A vast majority of contraceptive medications or devices can be acquired in pharmacy stores or through a prescription from a physician. Most medical forms of contraception such as pills or surgery, are covered by healthcare insurance providers, both private and government.
Marriage, Divorce & Rights of Women
The Union of Everett authorizes two federally recognized forms of marriage. Couples who wish to become married may legally marry within their own state and get a license through the state or county court. Couples may also marry under federal marriage licenses as covered by the Everetti Non-Discrimination Act, which protects all citizens from discrimination. Federal recognition of marriage ensures equal protections of all married couples from potential state level forms of discrimination whether certain laws violate the rights of married women or the rights of homosexual couples. The federal government authorizes marriage between consenting adult homosexual, bisexual or transgender couples and establishes their right to be legally bound as a recognized couple under license and law which protects their rights on several levels including in finances, health care, rights to children or adoption, custody or guardianship of step-children acquired through the marriage and rights as legal heir or primary family contact in the event of injury or death of a spouse or direct family member in the marriage. On a state level, a total of 18 states in the Union of Everett have legalized state level gay or transgender marriages.
To compromise for opposition to the use of the term "marriage" for LGBT people, the federal government has passed two legal definitions for the term, "civil union" and "religious marriage". Under these two terms, civil union licenses are official government recognized marriages, which are in turn, documented and licensed through state, county or federal licenses and therefore, government married couples receive full rights and benefits from being legally married under the law. Religious marriage is defined as an unofficial marriage under the law, in which while a couple may get married by a priest or other religious method, a civil union license is required regardless to receive government benefits and rights. The right of religious marriage and the right of religious organizations, such as churches, to choose who to marry, are inviolable, but under federal laws, still shall require a legal license to be recognized by the government. Official federal marriage codes define these two separate forms of marriage. While churches and organizations may choose to refuse services to certain peoples, the government retains the right to refuse certain services to said religious organizations, such as tax breaks or federal funds for religious programs as a result. This is further defined in ENDA, which specifies protected groups from discrimination.
Divorce is a legal court proceeding process in which married couples may legally terminate their marriage. In the Union of Everett, generally a couple may get divorced for almost any reason but certain provisions exist in the case of children and custody. Married couples with children require specific reason for terminating their marriage. These reasons include; one of the spouses are violent or abusive, one of the spouses has a serious alcohol addiction or uses illegal narcotics, one of the spouses has been convicted of a felony offense, one of the spouses is sexually abusive or sexually abusive towards the children, one of the spouses are involved in some level of illegal activity such as gangs, one of the spouses has cheated on (committed adultery) the other, one of the spouses is verbally or psychologically abusive towards the other or the children, one of the spouses is oppressive against the other (in the sense that one spouse is religiously oppressive or abusive, or violates the rights of the other in a variety of situations). In these situations, the children are usually placed in the custody of the spouse who is the plaintiff against the other spouse committing the offenses. In a situation in which both parents are deemed unfit as a result of evidences providing during the divorce process, children may be placed in the legal custody of a relative.
In the Union of Everett, several laws exist to protect women from abuse or oppression by traditional laws, conservative practices or religious customs. Women in Everett have the right to choose who they wish to marry. It is legal for religions to follow their traditions and customs, many of which often match couples together or choose a bride for a male bachelor, it is only legal if both parties consent to having their spouses chosen for them. It is illegal for a husband to establish dominant authority over their spouse in the sense of religious values without consent of the wife. It is a legal divorce reason that a wife may terminate the marriage under the claims of religious based oppression against women. Likewise, it is illegal for a wife to establish an unwarranted and non-consensual dominant oppression against a husband, which a husband can use as reason to file for divorce under marital abuse or oppression. It is illegal to force upon a spouse sexual activities.
Under federal law it is illegal for an adult to marry a minor outside of the legal marriage buffer zone of two years age gap. This means that a 16 year old may legally marry an 18 year old. It is generally legal that a minor may marry another minor within their general two year age gap as long as both parties are a minimum of 16 years of age. The right to consent to marriage as a minor requires either legal consent of the minor's parents or legal guardians or for a minor to undergo legal emancipation from their parents which the legal age for emancipation is the age of 16.
Criminal Offense Law
Rape & Sex Offenses
The Union of Everett treats sex offenses as a high level form of "cruel and heinous" crime. A large portion of sex offenses listed in state and federal statutes result in extreme punishments.
Rape, described in a variety of forms, generally under federal code, defines as the act of engaging in sexual activities or intercourse without consent or knowledge of the victim party. This can mean either force-able rape in which a conscious victim is attacked against their will and actively resisting or stating that he or she does not consent or the offender party is using threats of harm or other forms or intimidating or violent coercion, to engage in said sexual activities or using date rape drugs to make a victim unconscious. One of the primary changes to federal code regarding rape's definition during the formation of the Union of Everett was the inclusion of two additional forms of sexual activity which previously were not "legally" defined as forms of rape, oral and anal. Under many statutes, anal rape was referred to as sodomy and under criminal law was not the same offense. Current federal code regards any form of forced sexual activity as rape including oral or anal attacks and also including other "non-penetrative" sexual activity. Force-able Rape, is a Level One crime which often can result in the Death Penalty. Unlawful Rape may include offenses such as taking advantage of a drunken or high victim, or attacking a sleeping victim in which the victim is not awake or aware during the attack that sex is ongoing. This offense often results in Life Imprisonment but incidents of violence or abuse during an attack on an unconscious victim can result in the Death Penalty. Unauthorized Impregnation is a crime, which is defined as during the course of the rape, the victim becomes pregnant. This can upgrade a Life sentence to a Death Penalty. Unlawful Transmission is also a crime, in which during the attack, the offender infects the victim with an STD or STI, regardless of its level of danger, can result in upgrading a Life Imprisonment sentence to the Death Penalty. Rape charges are included in offenses committed against both men and women victims.
Child Molestation is a sexual offense defined as any form of sexual activity against a minor under 16 years of age or against a victim 16 or 17 years of age in which the offender is over the 35 year old legal limit to age of consent sexual activities. Child Molestation convictions often result in a Death Penalty sentence. Statutory Rape is defined in federal code as an offender over the age of 35 who engages in unlawful consensual sex with a 16 or 17 year old. Sentences can range from 15 to 25 years imprisonment and possible inclusion to the National Sex Offender Registry. In the rare instances of minor on minor sex offenses, charges and sentencing varies. An instance of a minor raping another minor can result in a charge of rape which can result in Juvenile Detention until the age of 18 and transfer to prison until the age of 25. Minors as young as 15 can be charged as adult offenders in the event of a noticeably brutal sexual attack and can remain imprisoned until the age of 30 and sometimes as old as 45.
Most frequent forms of sex offense charges include sexual harassment forms of bullying. Sexual harassment bullying in schools or other locations between minors can result in bullying charges and depending on the form of the attack, charges of Assault, Aggravated Harassment or Force-able Touching can be applied. Several forms of bullying are designated as sexual harassment including wedgies, pantsing (the act of yanking down a victim's pants, shorts or skirt to reveal their underwear or genitals), Kancho, Nipple Cripple (known as a Purple Nurple) among others. Attacks such as Kancho (jamming an object or extremities like fingers into a victim's anal region), pantsing and Nipple Cripples usually result in Assault charges and can result in sentences as high as a year in a Juvenile Detention facility. Sex related bullying in situations of more intense albeit rare events, such as Kancho type attacks in which a victim is actually penetrated, can result in an offender sentenced to Juvenile Detention for the remainder of their adolescence until the age of 18 in which they are paroled and remain on probation until the age of 21. Such sex bullying attacks between high schoolers in which an offender may already be 18 or older, can result in jail time for up to three years and parole for an additional 3 years followed by two years of probation. 18 year old or older high schoolers can be added to the Sex Offender Registry for such more violent bullying assaults and as a result, require homeschooling. These forms of bullying laws are also enforced on college campuses.
National Sex Offender Registry
The National Sex Offender Registry is a national database that can be accessed online for free, sponsored by the federal government and various Rape Prevention watch groups. The database contains a up-to-date and complete listing of all known and registered sex offenders living in the Union of Everett complete with the most recent mugshot photos, a list of the charged convictions, their current or previous sentences, their home address and their federal travel restrictions. Federal travel restrictions are a variety of restrictions imposed by the judge on a sex offender who has been released from incarceration for completing in serving their sentence for the offense they committed. Most sex offenders who are free and on parole, probation or relieved of parole, are automatically restricted from living within five miles of a school. Other possible restrictions can include; not allowed to attend theme/amusement parks in which children are often visiting, not allowed within 500 feet of a women's center including women's exercise gyms, Planned Parenthood, strip clubs and night clubs, not allowed within 500 feet of a children's park or playground, not allowed to attend a nude beach, not allowed to attain employment in the fields of law enforcement, volunteer fire/EMS, security enforcement, healthcare/medical (in which contact with women, children or potentially vulnerable persons can occur), not allowed to possess or own a firearm, not allowed to carry or possess a weapon on one's person or within one's vehicle, not allowed to acquire a driver's license, not allowed to be in legal custody of a child (including one's own children), not allowed visitation rights with one's own children while they are minors, not allowed any form of contact or communication with a minor, not allowed access to prescribed medications that can be used as a date rape drug. Sex offenders who are released into the public are often aided by a parole or probation officer to find them acceptable housing and employment based on their restriction codes.
Under federal law, Adultery is a non-crime. This means that while a person cannot be charged nor punished for committing Adultery, it can be legally used in court during divorce proceedings. Committing an act of Adultery is defined under Everetti law as the act of one spouse having relations with another person besides their legally married partner. This can be used in a divorce in court as a valid reason for officially terminating a marriage. The federal law regarding Adultery overturned a variety of state level laws including the charging and sentencing punishments such as jail time, illegal. One also cannot be arrested on a charge of committing Adultery. Under the Religious Security Act, various religious laws and rules regarding "adultery" are always ignored by the court system including attempts at pressing charges or demanding punishments against persons who have had sexual relations before marriage or married women who have been victims of rape. The federal government does not recognize either as a crime.
The Union of Everett has unique anti-HIV transmission laws among anti-STD/STI transmission laws. It is a federal felony offense, as high as a Level 2 crime, to deliberately infect a sexual partner, knowingly or deliberately with intent, with a potentially deadly sexually transmitted disease (STD) contagion such as HIV/AIDS. The act of infecting a partner or partners with HIV/AIDS either knowingly or deliberately is considered Sexual Assault & Battery with a Deadly Weapon. The minimum penalty is Life Imprisonment with no chance of parole. Victims who had contracted the disease from the offender who then die as a result of HIV/AIDS related illness or even suicide, can result in an additional charge of First Degree Manslaughter, which when compounded with the previous sex assault charge, can result in the Death Penalty. Persons who have been charged with deliberate mass transmission of deadly illnesses such as HIV/AIDS can face the Death Penalty for violation of anti-biological terrorism law. Other forms of deliberate STD transmission with less dangerous STDs such as Gonorrhea or Herpes can result in a charge of Sexual Assault, a Level 2 crime, resulting in Life Imprisonment with possibility of parole. Any of these STD offenses, having occurred during a rape or other form of non-consensual sex, results in the Death Penalty.
Persons who are documented as HIV/AIDS positive, are required by federal law to have their HIV results forwarded to the Department of Health. These records are added to the Centers For Disease Control & Prevention database and a new NID card is issued, featuring a CDC advisory on the back of the card. The NID requirements of disclosure of HIV/AIDS positive results on a NID card is designed to alert paramedics, doctors, surgeons, physicians, dentists, fire/rescue crews and law enforcement that the person is HIV positive. It is also part of an initiative to slow the spread of the disease. The NID HIV advisory has been reported to have decreased patient to doctor transmission of HIV by 60% and decreased HIV/AIDS spread and acquisition as detected by the EDS system by 47% since 2009. Persons who are HIV/AIDS positive are not allowed to work in the medical field as per federal law.
Legality of Pornography
Under federal law, pornography (media produced sexually explicit images and video of adults engaging in sexual activities) is legal. Although legal, it is subject to heavy regulations. All pornography is regulated under federal statute code under the former United States Title 18 codes. U.S. Titled 19 code regulating importation of "immoral articles" was repealed during Everett's formation under the claims of the freedoms of information, expression, press and speech. Title 18 codes were adopted under Chapters 109A, 109B, 110 and 117. Legal forms of pornography are federally regulated under Title 18, 110, 2256/2257/2257A. The law specifies that nearly all forms of consensual adult-adult human related content is legal. Specified illegal content, designated as "obscene", includes use or abuse of animals, minors, depicting adults as minors, activities involving real human or animal blood, activities in which a person is injured or killed (snuff but not including fake or simulated), activities involving real or simulated rape or sexual assault and content involving human solid wastes (scat) or emesis (ejection of food from the stomach). Homosexual erotica is legal. Content involving more than two people is also legal. Production of photo or video content for sale on the internet or via DVD/VHS purchase, is completely legal. Regulations regarding mailing explicit content via the postal service have been repealed.
Code 2257 of Union of Everett federal law establishes the requirement of pornographic producers to document all participants in video or photographic content dates of birth, citizenship, location of employment, tax information and records of STD/STI testing. Those who participate in non-solo content are required by federal law to mandatory STD/STI/HIV testing every 30 days. Use of condoms or other STD prevention devices are required in all content depicting persons engaging in penetrative sexual activity with others. Federal law prohibits those documented as infected with an STD from performing until treated and cured unless infected with an incurable STD such as HIV/AIDS, Herpes or HPV. Those documented and registered with the CDC as infected with an incurable STD are prohibited from performance in pornographic content. Persons with sex offense convictions and listed on the National Registry are prohibited from performing or working in sex industry.
Unlike some nations like the United States, Everett not only prohibits the deliberate depiction of an adult porn actor or actress as a minor but bans legal age adults from performing in such content if they are deemed to physically look underage. While this does not include Australian style attempts at outlawing pornography of women with small breasts, the law specifies a number of requirements to deem an actress or actor as "underage looking" such as a youthful face which seems to look "younger than 16 years of age". As a result, 2257 code cost the careers of several notable actresses who have been often depicted to look underage by production companies. The Department of Justice stated that these types of pornographic niches appeal to pedophiles and sex offenders by hiring adult models that look like pubescent or younger children. Suits submitted to the supreme court have often failed to win cases against varied claims such as discrimination or violation of the rights of women.
Sexting Phenomenon & Social Media
Sexting is a legal issue and phenomenon that first occurred with the ability of cell phone users to take photos with a cell phone camera and send the photos to other cell phone users via text messaging. The result was a report of many people, including minors, who would take sexually explicit images or videos with their phones and text them to other people. This became referred to as "sexting". As issues with sexting continued to rise and entered into incidents of legal court cases and criminal cases, a federal law was established to define sexting and its legal use and its illegal use.
Sexting is completely legal when done between two consenting adult parties. Consent is defined as the taking of and then sending an explicit image or video to another adult that the sender personally knows on friendly terms. Friendly Terms is defined as the sender and receiver are personal friends, family, in a relationship or married. It is illegal to sext a person who does not know the sender or is not on terms with the sender (ie: co-workers, enemies, on bad terms, separated or divorced spouses, persons who have restraining orders). It is illegal for an adult to send a sext to a minor. It is not illegal for a minor to send a sext to an adult. This though has two legal definitions. A sext sent from a minor to an adult consisting of a sexually explicit image of an adult to an adult is legal for both the minor and adult parties. It is illegal though, for an adult to receive a sext from a minor depicting explicit images or video of a minor, which can be considered child pornography. It is not illegal for a minor to send another minor an adult oriented sext. It is also not illegal for a minor to send another minor a sext of them-self, considered child pornography when received by an adult but not when transferred between two minors. It is illegal to sext an image or video of a third party minor between two other minors (which can be legally charged as a form of bullying). It is illegal for a minor to post explicit sext images or video to an internet website such as social media sites. This would constitute distribution of child pornography. It is unlawful to transfer explicit sexts of a minor to another minor via online email. The majority of charges and sentences of a minor to minor sext when unlawful or illegal results in often no more than a couple weeks of Community Service. Minors charged with unlawful forms of sexting are not legally allowed to be added to the Sex Offender Registry.
When in the situation of an adult receiving a sext from a minor depicting a minor, it is unlawful for the adult to save, download or keep the image or video. Deletion is required by law. An adult caught with a sext depicting a minor on their cell phone in which the text message or video is marked as "not read" cannot be charged. Many legal experts advise that adults who receive sexts from minors respond with texts advising the sender not to send such content in the future, as this would aid in a legal defense against potential sexting charges in the future. Adults caught with sexts on their phone which have been viewed and not deleted or also have been saved or forwarded to others can result in child pornography charges as high as 10 to 15 years imprisonment and addition to the Sex Offender Registry.
In varied social media situations, it is unlawful for anyone to post an image of a minor in a sexually explicit image or video to the internet. Distribution of child pornography can result in prison sentences, depending of the nature of the content, can be as high as Life Imprisonment or as low as 10 years. It is also unlawful for a minor to post an image or video of them-self that is sexually explicit. This, like the sexting laws, can result in Community Service sentences. The distribution of explicit images or videos of other minors, posted by a minor, unlawfully and without consent, although illegal regardless, is considered a form of sexual harassment bullying. This can result in conviction sentences as high as 10 years imprisonment for "extreme and heinous intentional humiliation", noted in reference to the infamous Rutgers college bullying incident in which the victim committed suicide afterwards. This offense can be charged on both minor and adult offenders. The offense, resulting in the suicide of a victim, can result in "Bullying-Suicide Manslaughter" which could sentence an offender to Life Imprisonment with possibility of parole.
The Union of Everett federal government repealed all federal laws regarding adult prostitution, leaving the regulation of prostitution to the states. While federal law still enforces child prostitution and sex slavery/sex trade laws, under federal law, no statute bans the practice of one consenting adult, selling sexual services to another consenting adult. In several states since including Yucatan, Quebec, Florida, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and New York, government regulated and taxed brothels are legal. In the states of Hawaii, Quebec and Florida, private escort companies are also legal. The majority of these prostitution legalizations maintain restrictions on "street walking", the act of soliciting sexual services in public areas, and intense health code requirements for those who must be legally employed into the escort or brothel business, similar to Everetti federal pornography regulations. Ongoing court cases, between people who demand the right that they can sell their bodies for services and the government continue, citing it is not anyone's business what one does with their body.