What is Incest?

Incest is sexual activity with a member of your immediate family. 

In England and Wales, the Sexual Offences Act 2003 created an offence of familial sexual abuse (this is covered in Scotland in the 2009 Sexual Offences Act, and in Northern Ireland in the Sexual Offences Order 2008). The aim of this law was to protect children up to the age of 18 from any form of activity that a person would consider sexual or indecent. The offender may be an adult or another child. It recognises the modern family unit and it defines familial sexual abuse as being between a person and their parent (including adoptive or foster), grandparent, child, grandchild, sibling or half-sibling, uncle, aunt, nephew or niece.

Even if both parties consent, incest is a criminal offence.  Consent cannot be given by a child under the age of 13 and in this case the maximum sentence that can be given is life imprisonment.  If the person is over the age of 13, the maximum sentence that can be given is 7 years.

Get in touch via isva@idas.org.uk or ring our helpline on 03000 110 110.
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