Can you subpoena mistresses to tell the truth about a suspected affair?

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Can you subpoena mistresses to tell the truth about a suspected affair?

Over the years I have found explicit messages between my husband and other women. Over the last few months, many of these messages directly point to previous affairs, looking to reunite those affairs, and attempts to start new ones. Then, a woman I had wondered about IM’d him and I pretended to be him. She admitted to having sex with him in her office 7 years ago multiple times. When I confronted her she denied it. If I seek to divorce my husband, can I call on these women I know of to be questioned? Are lie detectors ever used and can they be used against him in court? We have 3 kids; I don’t work.

Asked on October 17, 2011 under Family Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

In a legal action--including a divorce proceeding--it is possible to subpoena witnesses to testify if they have relevant evidence or testimony. Therefore, IF it would be the case that subpoening your husband's alleged mistresses would produce relevant information in a divorce proceeding, you could do this. You may not compel them to take lie detector tests, however, and even if you could, they are often not admissable in court, and in any event, their accuracy is somewhat suspect. The question then becomes, does it help you to get them to testify? Even if they are under oath, they may try or choose to lie; and even if they don't, what does their testimony get you? It may help, but it may not--it depends on the circumstances, what you  are seeking, etc. You should retain a divorce attorney to help you, discuss the situation with him or her, and let the lawyer guide the strategy.


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