Is it legal to be nude in your backyard?

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Is it legal to be nude in your backyard?

What if the back yard is somewhat visible to the neighbor? Our intent is not nefarious; we just want to use our pool and sunbathe in the nude.

Asked on May 4, 2015 under Criminal Law, Rhode Island

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

It is not illegal, per se, to be nude in your own home or other private areas of your residence.  The problem is that you have an area that is "somewhat visible."  You may be able to enjoy your property in the nude, but if a neighborhood child sees the activity, then charges could follow for inappropriate exposure to a minor.   This doesn't mean the charge would stick-because the state would still have to prove that you actually intended for the child to see you nude.  Even if the state is not successful in making the charges stick, the arrest will still be on your record and could affect you down the road. Many employers will fire an employee simply for being arrest for a sex offense.

So.... even if you know you have a defense, do you want to risk the charge for a sexually oriented arrest.  To avoid an arrest, the best option would be to screen off the areas where you intend to be nude so that it  no longer "somewhat visible" so that you can enjoy your activities in private.


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