Legal recourse for adultery

Asked about 1 year ago - Phoenix, AZ

My wife and I are Arizona residents. I currently am out of state for work purposes. My wife is a resident alien. She has told me that she is seeing another Arizona resident who is also a resident alien. He is also married. They are planning on traveling to Boston in early November. He will be buying her airline tickets.


13-1408. Adultery; classification; punishment; limitation on prosecution

A. A married person who has sexual intercourse with another than his or her spouse, and an unmarried person who has sexual intercourse with a married person not

his or her spouse, commits adultery and is guilty of a class 3 misdemeanor. When the act is committed between parties only one of whom is married, both shall be


B. No prosecution for adultery shall be commenced except upon complaint of the husband or wife.

In accordance with the Mann Act and SC Decision Caminetti v. United States, 242 U.S. 470 (1917). The Court decided that the Mann Act applied not strictly to purposes of prostitution, but to other noncommercial consensual sexual liaisons. Thus consensual extramarital sex falls within the genre of "immoral sex".

While I understand the Mann Act is generally not applied to consensual extramarital sexual liaisons, does the 1986 revision to the law, "any sexual activity for which any person can be charged with a criminal offense" (Pub. L. No. 99-628, 100 Stat. 3511–3512.) make their trip to Boston subject to prosecution?

Additional information

I ask this because under Arizona law, I understand Adultery is a criminal offense. I am a US citizen Jus Solis. My wife's residency is based upon my original sponsorship.

Attorney answers (5)

  1. Alexander Joseph Segal

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . the way you present you question, it is not an immigration one. Consult an AZ attorney with criminal defense or family law concentration.

    NYC EXPERIENCED IMMIGRATION ATTORNEYS; email:; Phone: (866)... more
  2. David Kephart

    Contributor Level 14


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Even though adultery is technically illegal, that statute is not enforced. As such, she will not face any criminal consequences.

    Attorney David Kephart is an experienced Criminal Defense Trial Attorney and Jury Consultant. He is the recipient... more
  3. Michael Hugh Carlin

    Contributor Level 18


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . What is your immigration status? How did your wife obtain her permanent resident status? What are your goals? It is not clear from your posting exactly what you want to do. It appears to me that you need to consult with a family law attorney and with an immigration attorney. Best of luck to you, whatever your goals happen to be.

    (734) 369-3131. This communication does not establish and attorney-client relationship with the Law Office of... more
  4. Michael Thomas Poulton


    Contributor Level 13


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Lawrence v. Texas has probably invalidated adultery laws on constitutional grounds. This is still entirely unclear, because despite being technically illegal in many states it is essentially never prosecuted.

  5. Jeff L. Khurgel


    Contributor Level 19


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . This is primarily a question for family and criminal law practitioners. From an immigration perspective, I will say that the actions you describe may have adverse immigration implications as well, which should later be evaluated on behalf of interested parties.

    Former USCIS and Department of State Embassy Officer -- Khurgel Immigration Law Firm -- 4199 Campus Drive, Suite... more

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