It is the position of this Note that true equality between women and men can never exist until every state has completely abolished the marital rape exemption. This abolishment would give every woman, married or unmarried, the freedom to control her own body. The purpose of this Note is to encourage legislators, and those who influence them across the United States, to complete the abolishment of the marital rape exemption. Part II of this Note presents an analysis of the common law origins and legal justifications for the marital exemption. Part III examines the progressive groundbreaking states which have set the pace in the national campaign for complete abolishment. In addition, a current breakdown of every state's law will also be discussed. In Part IV, Ohio's handling of the marital rape exemption will be examined, and the debate surrounding the need for reform of Ohio's marital rape law will be closely analyzed. Part V concludes by suggesting ways in which the complete abolishment of spousal immunity may be achieved to promote equality for women in the legal system.
Note, The Marital Rape Exemption: Evolution to Extinction, 43 Clev. St. L. Rev. 351 (1995)