Ohio prostitution law

Ohio’s laws prohibiting prostitution and related crimes are very much like other states in the U.S. that have made it unlawful to engage in any sex-for-hire offenses. While the laws are quite similar, their categorization is a bit different than the other statutes in other states. However, penalties and prohibitions remain quite the same.


Prostitution, considered the engagement in sexual activity in exchange for money or other valuables, is considered unlawful in Ohio. A third degree misdemeanor, charges of prostitution can result in penalties of imprisonment for up to 60 days and/or a fine up to $500.

During a trial, anyone charged with prostitution or a related offense may be required to submit to venereal disease and HIV testing. If the venereal disease test comes back positive, the court will order treatment for the defendant. If the HIV test comes back with a positive result, future convictions of the defendant will result in more serious charges and more serious punishments.


Compulsion is categorized as a felony of the third degree. Anyone who compels another by force or threats to engage in acts of prostitution may be convicted of compulsion. Additionally, anyone who requests or causes a minor to engage in prostitution or pays a minor to engage in prostitution is guilty of compulsion. Any parent or legal guardian who allows a minor to engage in sexual acts for hire may be convicted of compulsion.

Threatening or forcing anyone under the age of 16 years old to engage in prostitution or sexual acts for hire may be convicted of a felony in the second degree.


Considered a third degree misdemeanor, procurement is when one entices or solicits another to patronize a prostitute or brothel. It’s also when someone procures or obtains a prostitute for a patron. The crime of procurement also reaches to include anyone who allows premises that he owns or is in control of to be used for prostitution or acts of sex for hire.


Also a third degree misdemeanor, solicitation involves when one offers to pay someone else to engage in sexual acts with the offender in exchange for a fee or other valuables. If the act occurs involving a motor vehicle, the offender loses his or her driving privileges due to a suspension of his or her driver’s license for 6 months.


Lingering in a public place (alley, street, park, building doorway, street corner, etc.) for the purpose of drumming up patrons for a prostitute business is illegal. Anyone found repeatedly stopping or beckoning to passersby or vehicles in an attempt to create agreements involving prostitution may be guilty of a third degree misdemeanor.

If the offender is infected by HIV (and proven previously due to past convictions), the crime increases seriousness to a felony in the fifth degree.

The following Nevada counties have their own laws and regulations on prostitution:

Prostitution laws in US cities:

Prostitution laws in Canada