Sexual Activities : Making Sure Your Partner Consents

Suprijono Suharjoto / iStock / Thinkstock

It’s up to the partner who makes the first step to start a sexual activity to make sure the other person agrees to it.  The law calls this agreement “consent”.

Before doing anything sexual in nature with someone else, you must take what the law calls “reasonable steps” to make sure your partner consents.

The law doesn’t say what these “reasonable steps” are. It all depends on the situation. But in most cases, asking your partner if he agrees to a sexual activity is considered a reasonable step to make sure he consents.

If you don’t take any reasonable steps to make sure your partner consents to the sexual activity, you are taking the risk that your partner hasn’t really consented, and you could be accused of sexual assault.

To summarize, if you want to participate in a sexual activity with someone else, you must make sure that person consents. If you are accused of sexual assault, you can’t claim that you thought your partner consented if you purposely closed your eyes to this issue.

You must also take reasonable steps to make sure the other person is old enough to consent to a sexual activity.

Important !
This article explains in a general way the law that applies in Quebec. This article is not a legal opinion or legal advice. To find out the specific rules for your situation, consult a lawyer or notary.