How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Lady Themis Your Own Question
Lady Themis
Lady Themis, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 7751
Experience:  Divorce, child custody, child support, etc.
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
Lady Themis is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Can I take criminal or civil action against the party that

Resolved Question:

Can I take criminal or civil action against the party that was sexually involved with my spouse during our marriage? We are currently still married and working to fix our problems.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Lady Themis replied 5 years ago.

Thank you for your question.


While a handful of states still recognize a civil cause of action against a paramour for interfering with a marriage, New York is not one of them. New York has abolished such causes of action, known as alienation of affection.


Adultery does continue to be criminal in New York (NYCL Penal Section 255.17) as a misdemeanor offense, but is rarely ever prosecuted. You can try to refer the issue to the state's attorney for prosecution, but both the woman and your husband will be exposed. And, there is little chance the crime will be prosecuted.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
If my husband files for divorce can his actions be recognized in the proceedings? Also, can I request alimony because of his adultery? We own a home and I am currently retired. Would the home have to be sold?
Expert:  Lady Themis replied 5 years ago.

The court is largely unconcerned with the adulterous behavior in terms of the property distribution and alimony awards. Alimony is based on the relative need and ability of the parties to pay. The issue may be relevant in terms of custody of the children, if any, because the court will always act in the best interest of the children.


Whether the home has to be sold depends on your financial picture, whether there is anything owing on the home, who will be keeping it, and whether that party can afford to maintain it.


Lady Themis and 6 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you

Related Family Law Questions