Helping Clients Protect Their Future and Their Liberty

When is “sexting” illegal in Texas?

On Behalf of | Mar 22, 2023 | Sex Crimes

man using a cellphone to text

These days, most teens and adults have a personal smartphone. It’s not unusual for someone to spend a few hours a day browsing online or scrolling through social media. One of the facilities that’s so attractive about these phones is the ability to send high-quality pictures via text messages.

The ease of sending pictures in this way can facilitate “sexting” or sex texting. This involves the sending of explicit messages and pictures via text. While there’s no law against this practice as it concerns consenting adults, it does cause issues with the younger generation.

It’s not illegal for two consensual adults to sext each other

When a sexting “conversation” happens between two adults, there’s no law to prevent it, so long as the communication is consensual and both parties are engaging in it freely.

The law gets involved when one of the parties to the conversation is a minor. It is illegal to share sexual material with a minor. It is also illegal to share any material of this nature that you get from a minor with another adult. It may also be illegal for you to receive and/or possess anything that you receive from a minor that is illicit in nature. These offenses are treated seriously and can result in hefty penalties, if proven.

Texas law states that it is even illegal for two minors to send or distribute sexual content. Such an exchange, however, will not be treated as a crime when both are minors, the conversation is consensual, one is no more than two years older than the other and they’re in a relationship. This recognizes a situation wherein two similarly-aged minors (under the age of 17) who are dating engage in sexting consensually.

Free Initial Consult With Defense Lawyer

Facing criminal charges for sexting can be very frightening, as a conviction can have life-changing consequences. It’s important to get strong legal assistance that can help you to robustly fight the charges against you, if you’ve been accused of wrongdoing.