Statutory rape law is designed to protect naive youths from the sexual advances of older adults who may use their advanced age to take sexual advantage of youths.The law is designed to curb the passive coercion that is inherent in sexual relationships having a great difference of age.For example, an 18-year-old cannot rent a car, but he or she can buy one.However, a parent may need to co-sign on the loan if he or she doesn't have a solid work or credit history yet, which is likely.
This is particularly important for 18-year-olds to understand, as they may be dating someone younger than them, which is common in high school.
At 18 years old, you can vote, buy a house, or even get married without restriction in most states.
On the other hand, you can also go to jail, get sued, gamble away your tuition through online poker, or make terrible stock market investments.
Some states have age of consent provisions in their statutory rape legislation that stipulate that sexual relations between teenagers or young adults should not exceed a certain age gap.
For example, the state of New Jersey defines the age of consent as anyone between ages 13 and 16 may not legally have sex with someone 5 years or older than them.