Solicitation: Definition & Laws

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  • 0:04 What Is Solicitation?
  • 1:10 Solicitation Laws
  • 2:02 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Jessica Schubert

Jessica is a practicing attorney and has taught law and has a J.D. and LL.M.

Learn what constitutes solicitation in the legal world. We'll examine the definition of solicitation and review laws that govern this crime. Once you have completed this lesson, you will have a thorough understanding of solicitation.

What is Solicitation?

Have you ever watched a police drama on television where a prostitute gets arrested for 'soliciting' an undercover cop? Solicitation is a crime where one commands, incites, urges, persuades, or requests that another individual commit a crime or attempt to commit a crime. The actual crime in this case is the solicitation itself, not the act of committing the crime. In other words, whether the crime is carried out does not matter; the fact that one seeks to involve another person in the crime is the key to solicitation.

The most common example of solicitation is prostitution, which involves exchanging sexual acts for some sort of payment. For instance, as in the previous example, a prostitute might seek to persuade an undercover police officer to commit the crime of prostitution. This would constitute solicitation by the prostitute. If the police officer agreed to the terms, the officer would be guilty of solicitation as well. There are other types of solicitation besides prostitution; these include the solicitation of someone to commit murder or another violent assault.

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