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What a sexual service is

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The definition of a sexual service or ‘doing sex work’

In NSW, the law says that prostitution or sex work is sexual intercourse with another person, or masturbation of another person, using any part of the body or an object—for payment. Masturbation includes hand jobs and body slides.

Many of the legal definitions of a sexual service are not clear and are open to the interpretation of local council staff, the courts and police. 

Sexual intercourse

Sexual intercourse is defined as putting any part of the body or an object into another person’s vagina or anus—except where it is done as part of a proper medical procedure. An object could include toys such as dildos or vibrators.

Oral sex—the stimulation of the penis or vagina using the mouth—is also considered sexual intercourse.

Hand jobs, body slides and nude massages

Hand jobs and body slides are sexual services. Nude massage and other services may be defined as a sexual service by the police, council workers or courts. 

Types of services offered by sex workers

Services offered by sex workers are negotiated and consensual—or agreed by both the sex worker and the client. Clients request all sorts of services from sex workers, such as:

  •     a chat or counselling session involving no sex
  •     a full body massage with hand relief
  •     allowing the client to ‘cum’ on a selected part of the body such as the breasts
  •     oral sex
  •     penetrative vaginal or anal sex
  •     piercing of body parts
  •     discipline
  •     fantasy shows
  •     cross dressing.

Remember: if sexual services are available in a workplace, the premises may legally be defined as a brothel.

This document is presented for the purposes of providing information, and is not a substitute for independent professional legal advice. Nothing contained  in this document is intended as a substitute for your own legal professional’s advice. SWOP and the Law and Justice Foundation (NSW) do notaccept any liability for any illness, loss or damage incurred by use of, or reliance upon, the information in this article. Persons using this article should carefully evaluate its accuracy, currency, completeness and relevance for their purposes, and should obtain any  appropriate professional advice relevant to their particular circumstances. SWOP and the Law and Justice Foundation (NSW) cannot guarantee and assumes no legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, currency or completeness of the information