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Can a person be sued for having a relationship and affair/relations with a married man, by his wife?

East Islip, NY |

Can a person be sued for having a relationship and affair/relations with a married man, by his wife?

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Attorney answers 8


There used to be a cause of action called "alienation of affection" which would have allowed a suit like that. That cause of action was abolished in New York at least a half century ago.

I am a co-author of WEITZ ON AUTOMOBILE LITIGATION: THE NO FAULT HANDBOOK. The opinions expressed in this answer are not intended to be taken as legal advice. These opinions are based on New York practice. I may be contacted at 212-553-9300.


It depends - some states have interference with marital relations, sometimes called "alienation of affection" statutes, others allow a claim even absent such a statute. However, I believe that New York has done away with that cause of action. You need to check with a New York domestic relations attorney.


Not for a long time. It is commonplace now.




Not in New York.

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Alienation of affection is gone in New York but in certain circumstances and action could be advanced under an infliction of emotional distress theory. However, such an action would only be viable if the plaintiff was in the "zone of danger" at the time of the injurious occurrence.
Such a situation being fairly unlikely, I tend to agree with my colleagues in concluding that NO is the best answer to your question as it was stated.


50 years ago you could if you were cuckholded


A few states allow alienation of affection lawsuits. However, New York, is not one of them. Causes of action for alienation of affection have been abolished by statute.

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