A Guide to English Escort Law
It is completely legal to be an escort in the UK. There are no laws against escorts here, but there are laws for prostitution. When it comes to sex, the escort business is considered the same as prostitution. This is why both the prostitution industry and the escort industry have the same laws concerning sex.
In your escort work, there is always sex involved in exchange for money, although this is never officially mentioned anywhere. If you are an escort, you want to steer clear of the law and have a legitimate career. This is a small guide that should help you keep all your activities legitimate.
Escort Age Restictions
As an escort, it is illegal to do any business concerning sex if you are under the age of 18. The age for sexual consent in the UK is 16 but when it comes to selling sex the minimum age is 18. If the escort is younger than 18 and engages in sexual services she will be prosecuted. From a clients stand point paying for sex with an escort under the age of 18 constitutes as sexual assault. If you are an escort agency and you have an escort on your website under 18 then technically, in the eyes of the law you are sex trafficking minors. Pretty scary stuff but these laws are in place to protect young and vulnerable women.
Under the UK law, it is illegal to advertise for your sex work in certain places. Newspaper and magazine advertising used to be very popular. It is not illegal to advertise escort services in paper form but the actual newspaper or magazine could be prosecuted for money laundering offences under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002. They could be prosecuted for advertising illegal establishments and activities such as brothels or venues where sexual services are offered illegally. It is a criminal offence to advertise sexual services in public places such as teleophone boxes and shop windows. The safest and most legal way to advertise escort services in the UK is online. Escorts can advertise through the means of their own website, directories and forums without any problem, free from legal issues. Apart from word of mouth, the internet is now the best way to advertise and increase clientele.
When advertising online there are a few things you must adhere to in order to be discreet and not to attract any unwanted attention. Escorts can mention the services they provide, this is usually done in euphemistic language. Services have been short handed into a kind of code for example OWO is oral without a condom, GFE is girlfriend experience etc. Full nudity is not recommended. Pictures on the internet should be more glamour focused, topless with sexy lingerie. Leave a bit to the clients imagination. Payment is often referred to as rates or donations and it's never a good idea to tie in sexual services to the rates. Charge a flat fee rate based on the hour, extra hours, dinner dates and over night appointments.
Escorts don’t usually take to soliciting their services in public places. Therefore, there shouldn’t be any major problem. However, some individuals may call their professional prostitution as escort service and solicit clients. The law is strict against attempts to bring sexual service endorsements into public places. Even if you are not mentioning sexual services, it is still a crime to solicit for sex. Soliciting is mainly reffered to as streetwalking and falls under the conspiracy to corrupt public morals act. With the internet at your fingertips there is no longer any need for escorts to be doing such a thing.
As mentioned before, being paid for sex is not illegal. However, profiting from somebody else’s sexual services is considered illegal, and agencies can be prosecuted for this. The right way for an escort agency to operate is to take a commission from the escort for each booking. This is known as a booking fee or agency fee and is paid to the agency for it's marketing and advertising services. It's a bad idea to collect the money directly from the customer, this is the escorts job. By taking the money and then paying the escort her cut you may fall foul of the Sexual Offences Act 2003, where it is an offence to cause or incite prostitution or control it for personal gain.
There is a small risk even if you are an independent escort. For instance, if you always have a driver waiting outside for you while you are with your client, he is technically assisting you with sex work. Moreover, since you pay him, he is profiting from your sex work. It is very unlikly he would be prosecuted especially as the laws have relaxed when it comes to the Sexual Offences Act 2003. If he's getting paid for driving and not receiving the whole amount of money then technically he's not profiting from your sexual profession.
Renting Apartments to Escorts
As an escort agency you don't want to be seen to be controlling prostitution in any way. The escorts on your website are independent. They choose their work hours and have the right to take or refuse bookings as they see fit. Some escort agencies make a lot of money and then decide to buy apartments in order to rent them to escorts. Escorts can sometimes struggle renting properties due to neighbour complaints and also having the right references. As an escort agency never get tempted to rent properties to escorts. This will be seen as controlling prostitution especially when they see you rent the properties to the escorts that work for your agency. The laws in the UK also state if more than two escorts are working from the same apartment, it is deemed a brothel. Being convicted of brothel keeping can carry a jail sentence.
If you can follow the above procedures properly, English escort laws do not pose much of a problem for you. This industry is about being as discreet as possible without breaking certain fundamental laws. The escort indsutry in the UK is massive and the police only have time to deal with the escorts and escort agencies that are causing problems to the general public or are guilty to some pretty awful things.
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