AoA & Criminal Conversation

If your stbx can show that this person alienated your affections from him, that you had a viable marriage (meaning without this persons interference you would still be “happily” married)he can file suit against him for alienation of affection. It is expensive to sue for this and time consuming, aggrivating. From what I’ve read on these forums, an attorney will write a letter “threatening” a lawsuit unless a settlement is reached and if the person in question is guilty, they usually pay a settlement to keep it from court. If there is nothing to prove, then it can go to court and be decided if this person had anything to do with the demise of your marriage.

Criminal conversation or adultery is a misdemeanor and is the actual act of sex with someone other than your spouse. There is a 3 year statute of limitations after knowledge of the act. Though it is rarely prosecuted, it is illegal and it can have an affect on alimony.

On a side note, it sounds to me as though your stbx is probably blowing smoke to “scare” you into signing an agreement or getting you to give in on something that he wants…don’t respond. Don’t get worked up unless you see an official court document…and if there is nothing to the accusation, then don’t let it worry you any more.

Alienation of Affection is a lawsuit that can be filed against a third party for interfering with your marital relationship and alienating your feelings from your spouse. It is generally someone you are romantically involved with but not necessarily, it could also be a mother in law, or a co-worker. However, the co-worker must have take some act to try and alienate your feelings from your spouse.

Criminal conversation applies only when you have had a sexual relationship with a third party.

Helena M. Nevicosi
Attorney with Rosen Law Firm

4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 500
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
919.787.6668 main phone
919.787.6361 main fax

Charlotte Office
301 McCullough Drive
Suite 510
Charlotte, NC 28262
Main Phone: (704)307.4600
Main Fax: (704) 9343.0044

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(919) 321.0780


The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service only, a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action. The information posted on this forum is available for public viewing and is not intended to create an attorney client relationship with any individual. These answers are provided for informational purposes only, a person should consult with their own individual legal counsel before taking any action that could affect their legal rights or obligations.

The AofA can be a very touchy one. I too thought of persuing this one but, after careful research it would have been time consuming and expensive something I don’t have alot of right now (LOL) but, the question I wanted to ask with the Criminal Conversation althought its a misdeameanor is there any jail time or just probation. Because my STBX is now involved with a guy sexually and he resides at the house with our children and we are only 9 months into the separation that I might add we have no agreement in place (writing) on verbal on CS and visitation. I mean we are still legally married… I’ve asked the forum which I might add has been a monderful and useful source of knowledge. I was just planning my next step… Stepmom has always posted some good insights on topic I hope she weights in on this one. Again, good luck with you situation… We are going to get through this soon.


Corey B. Patterson

I’m actually not sure what the “punishment” for adultery would be. It’s hardly ever pursued but it being a misdemeanor I would say that it’s very little.

Sadly, there’s very little that can be done when one spouse doesn’t bother with the moral side of this issue.
My husband’s ex had her boyfriend living with her after only knowing him 2 weeks. They had an agreement which stated about the no one of the opposite sex overnight while the children were present so anytime we questioned a scenario it was…he moved in next door with the woman with an alternative lifestyle. He didn’t stay all night but stayed late and then came back over early…and my favorite was when they all went on vacation together (kids too) and we were told he slept in the car all week.
I’m not condeming anyone who has a relationship, sexual or otherwise, before they are divorced. It was our own personal feeling and decision that we did not want his children to think that was the right way to live. We wanted to show them that we believed since we were not married we should not live together.
My suggestion to anyone who is dealing with this, especially with children involved: Let them know that you are there for them and love them. As long as your child(ren) are not being neglected or harmed, don’t worry about what the other parent is doing or not doing. Focus your attention on those children and yourself. Do not make this a contest to try to show the other spouse who loves the children more or who was more committed to the marriage. For whatever reason, that part of your life is coming to an end and now it’s your time. Take what you will out of that relationship, keep in mind that that person is always going to be part of who you are, and start planning for your new life.
I wish I could tell you something that would help more, but all I can offer is this. It does get easier, the pain does lessen and after a while, you can look back and hopefully realize that this is the way things were supposed to be. Good Luck!

Will someone please explain the statues concerning AoA and Criminal Conversation? My STBX is saying that b/c i was co-workers w/ someone, he can file an AoA lawsuit against him. (NOTHING, absolutely NOTHING was there except the fact that we were co-workers) He says that it is this persons fault that i have no feelings for him - WRONG!!! He took care of destroying my feelings for him all by himself.