Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Non-Monogamous Families and the Law, Part 37: Summary of Oklahoma Laws

Non-Monogamous Families and the Law, Part 37: Summary of Oklahoma Laws

Adultery:

Oklahoma adultery makes both parties liable (Oklahoma State Legislature, 2011c). Additionally, there’s a rather odd internal prosecution clause, which allows for only the offended spouse to press charges, however it seems this can be waived in the case that the adulterous individuals are cohabiting together in “open and notorious adultery.” (Oklahoma State Legislature, 2011c) Adultery is considered to be a felony, and is punishable by up to 5 years imprisonment and a fine up to $500 (Oklahoma State Legislature, 2011d). Repeat escalation seems to not apply, and inchoate offences are limited to attempt (Oklahoma State Legislature, 2011a) and conspiracy, though Oklahoma conspiracy has conditions that mirror solicitation (Oklahoma State Legislature, 2011b). Punishment for attempt is at ½ the level of adultery, up to 2.5 years imprisonment and a fine up to $250 (Oklahoma State Legislature, 2011a). Conspiracy is actually punishable beyond adultery, at up to 10 years imprisonment and a fine up to $5,000 (Oklahoma State Legislature, 2011b). Oklahoma has no fornication law.

Bigamy:

Bigamy in Oklahoma has no purportation or cohabitation clause (Oklahoma State Legislature, 2011e); however punishments are different for the marryer and the marryee, with both considered a felony. The marryer is liable for up to 5 years imprisonment (Oklahoma State Legislature, 2011f), where the marryee is liable for the same imprisonment in addition to a fine up to $500 (Oklahoma State Legislature, 2011g). There doesn’t appear to be repeat escalation for bigamy, and inchoate applies in the same way to bigamy as it does to adultery, with attempt being at ½ and conspiracy at 10 years/$5,000 (Oklahoma State Legislature, 2011a; Oklahoma State Legislature, 2011b).

Round-Up of Laws:

Though Oklahoma has adultery and bigamy laws, its lack of a fornication law makes liability for unmarried non-monogamists minimal. Because of the excessive level of punishment for adultery, dyadic non-monogamists are in danger, but due to the internal nature of the adultery law it’s only an issue if one of the spouses chooses to prosecute. The bulk of the liability is with the non-dyadic non-monogamists, where they are easily liable under the open and notorious clause in adultery, and under bigamy is a bigamous marriage does actually exist.

Non-Monogamous Strategies:

Because of the lack of a fornication law, the easiest way to avoid liability is to not be married. Assuming this isn’t an option, maintaining a healthy relationship is important due to the internal nature of the adultery law, and for non-dyadic non-monogamists having separate living arrangements based on marriages would be important to avoid liability under open and notorious adultery.

References

Oklahoma State Legislature. (2011a). Attempts to commit crimes – Punishment. (Oklahoma Statutes 21-42). Oklahoma City, OK: Oklahoma State Legislature.

Oklahoma State Legislature. (2011b). Conspiracy – Definitions – Punishment. (Oklahoma Statutes 21-421). Oklahoma City, OK: Oklahoma State Legislature.

Oklahoma State Legislature. (2011c). Adultery defined. (Oklahoma Statutes 21-871). Oklahoma City, OK: Oklahoma State Legislature.

Oklahoma State Legislature. (2011d). Punishment for adultery. (Oklahoma Statutes 21-872). Oklahoma City, OK: Oklahoma State Legislature.

Oklahoma State Legislature. (2011e). Bigamy defined. (Oklahoma Statutes 21-881). Oklahoma City, OK: Oklahoma State Legislature.

Oklahoma State Legislature. (2011f). Bigamy a felony. (Oklahoma Statutes 21-883). Oklahoma City, OK: Oklahoma State Legislature.

Oklahoma State Legislature. (2011g). Person marrying a bigamist. (Oklahoma Statutes 21-884). Oklahoma City, OK: Oklahoma State Legislature.

1 comment:

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