Concerns about Alienation of Affection

My husband and I separated March 31, where I moved in with my mother, where I had plans to legally separate. My husband stayed in our marital home. April 8, I told an old high school friend who was on my facebook “happy birthday” and nothing more. I have not spoken to this friend since June 2016. My husband and I got married December 2016. My husband emailed me April 10th, telling me the date I moved out with plans to legally separate, that he did not want me to return to our marital home, and that my lawyer could contact his lawyer for any future communication. That being said, we were separated March 31 of course, and he officially decided we were completely done April 10th. I hired a lawyer shortly after that. His lawyer presented a drafted separation agreement about a 3 weeks to a month later. The friend that I messaged happy birthday to, that i have not spoken a single word to since June of 2016, 6 months prior to getting married, asked me out April 25th. We have been dating for a month now. I am waiting for his lawyer send my lawyer the final separation agreement so that it can be signed and sent to the court for us to be legally separated. My mom keeps telling me that because the separation agreement his lawyer is writing up is not signed yet that my husband could sue for alienation of affection. I keep telling her that’s not true because we are separated with the intent to stay separated. My question is is she right, could he potentially sue? Or because we had absolutely no communication prior to my husband and I’s separation and because we are separated with intent to stay separated and eventually divorce, am I right and he wouldn’t have a case? I dont want to risk putting him in harm’s way if he could potentially sue. I know that I have not cheated on my husband in any way, but my mother has me worrying a little bit.

Also, how long does a lawyer normally have to take to draft ups. separation agreement and them make some changes if before presenting the final agreement to be signed if there are no children involved, each party has their own debt, and each party are agreeing on the splitting of martial property?

No, the old friend you have been dating cannot be sued for alienation of affection if there was no contact during the marriage (between the date of marriage and the date of separation). For there to be a valid alienation of affection lawsuit, your old high school friend would have had to made contact with you during the marriage (before the date of separation) and would have had to be the cause of the loss of the genuine love and affection existing between you and your husband.

It can take 2-4 weeks, sometimes longer, for a lawyer to fully review the financial documents, consult with his/her client, and draft a response or make edits to a separation agreement.

Anna Ayscue

Attorney with Rosen Law Firm Cary • Chapel Hill • Durham • Raleigh • Wake Forest

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Thank you so much! This puts my mind at ease. And thank you for the knowledge on the time frame.