MN’s Prostitution Laws: The Penalties for Buying, Selling and Promoting Sex

Prostitution is illegal in Minnesota. The state laws range from the most serious offense of Sex Trafficking in the First Degree to the least of simply soliciting an adult prostitute. Whether you are arrested and charged for the most serious, least serious, or somewhere in the middle, all of these offenses carry with them harsh consequences, within and outside, the legal system.

According to the Office of Justice Programs of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, 8,000 to 12,000 people are estimated to be involved in prostitution/sex trafficking in Minnesota every day and 56% of people involved had their first experience in prostitution/sex trafficking as a minor (under age 18).

Minnesota’s Sex Laws:

Soliciting, inducing, recruiting or procuring customers for a minor (under 18) to be a prostitute; operating a prostitution business.

Minn. Stat. § 609.322, subd. 1

Minnesota Penalties:


  • 20 years and $50,000
  • 25 years and $60,000: If more than one sex-trafficking victim
Soliciting or inducing an adult to be a prostitute; promoting prostitution/receiving profits; trafficking anyone.

Minn. Stat. § 609.322, subd. 1a

Minnesota Penalties:


  • 15 years and $40,000
Permitting unrelated child to live with you knowing the child is a prostitute.

Minn. Stat. § 609.324, subd. 1a

Minnesota Penalties:

  • Up to 1 year and $3,000
Engaging in prostitution or hiring or offering to hire a minor under 18 years for prostitution.

Minn. Stat. § 609.324, subd. 1

Minnesota Penalties:


  • 20 years and $40,000: Child under 13
  • 10 years and $20,000: Child 13-15
  • 5 years and $10,000: Child 16-17
Engaging in prostitution or hiring or offering to hire an adult for prostitution.

Minn. Stat. § 609.324, subd. 3

Minnesota Penalties:


  • 90 days and $1,500: Public Place
  • 90 days and $500: Private Place
Engaging in prostitution, agreeing to be hired, or offering to be hired with a person 18 or older.

Minn. Stat. § 609.324, subd. 7

Minnesota Penalties:


  • Up to 1 year and $3,000: Public Place


  • 90 days and $1,000: Private Place

Along with the jail/prison time and fines there are also a number of collateral consequences, outside the legal system, that can have a lasting effect on you and your reputation within the community. These include:

Predatory Offender Registry

If you are convicted of sex trafficking a minor or hiring/soliciting a minor under 13 years old, then you will be required to register as a sex offender. This registration will negatively affect where you can live and work, your friendships and your reputation.

Permanent Certification on your Driving Record

If you used your car while engaging or soliciting a prostitute then the offense will be viewable by law enforcement on your driving record. If you commit a second offense then your record will become public.

Vehicle Forfeiture

If convicted of a felony-level offense then the State may attempt to seize or forfeit your vehicle.

Loss of Employment/Licensing

A conviction can result in the loss of any professional licensing. In addition, it will obviously make it more difficult to obtain meaningful work.

Loss of Immigrant Visa

A criminal conviction with over six-months of jail time can result in the loss of your Visa. A conviction of less time may not result in an automatic loss, but it will be an up-hill battle.

Getting arrested or being charged for solicitation or prostitution is an embarrassing experience for anyone. These cases are extremely sensitive and have serious, life-long collateral consequences. We have been to trial for many sex-related crimes, and understand the careful, aggressive approach needed to succeed. Do not make a bad situation worse. Get the help you need immediately.

If you have been charged with a sex crime, you need an experienced lawyer to represent you.  Call Sieben & Cotter at 651-455-1555 or send a request for more information and to arrange your free consultation.

Minnesota State Bar Association Criminal Law Certified Specialist, Patrick Cotter
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Call Sieben & Cotter at 651-455-1555 to arrange your free and comprehensive consultation, or send a request for more information.