CanI file a suit against the woman who knowingly broke up my marriage?

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CanI file a suit against the woman who knowingly broke up my marriage?

While married to me my husband found a woman in NJ on-line. He left me and is now living with her.

Asked on April 26, 2011 under Family Law, Indiana

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

What you are referring to here is an "Alienation of Affection" lawsuit.  And the vast majority of states no longer allow such a suit to be brought; this includes IN.  Even if one could be filed in this case, you probably wouldn't win. In order prevail, a plaintiff (the innocent spouse - you) must prove that the defendant’s (your husband's mistress) actions were the sole, proximate, cause of the break-up of the marriage.  The test the court uses is whether or not the spouse’s love and affection for the plaintiff just naturally drifted away or whether the defendant's conduct was the cause.  And since your husband went on his computer voluntarily (she could not have forced him to log on) you wouldn't have had a strong case.  Anyway, such suits carry little financial value; damages are limited to actual damages and there is no award for pain and suffering or emotional distress.

At this point you should consult with a divorce attorney in your area. 


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