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 RobertJDFL Your Own Question
RobertJDFL, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 11877
Experience:  Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
RobertJDFL is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Im being suied by my friends husband for alienation of affection.

This answer was rated:

I'm being suied by my friends husband for alienation of affection. I live in North Carolina. He has told her, their children, friends and family members that he was going to divorce her after their youngest graduated from High School. She and I are friends ONLY! Do he have a strong case for suing me?

Thank you for your question.

There are three main elements that must be established for a plaintiff to prove alienation of affection (as the plaintiff, they have the burden of proof):

  1. A marriage with genuine love and affection between Plaintiff and spouse.
  2. That the love and affection of the spouse was alienated.
  3. That the wrongful and malicious acts of Defendant were a proximate cause of the alienation of the affections.

Although it is often difficult to prove emotions such as love and affection, tangible expressions of the love and affection such as greeting cards, gifts, notes, and letters can be used, as well as the testimony of the spouse and other witnesses.

For the second element, again the testimony of the spouse that the love and relationship has diminished, as well as testimony of witnesses such as friends or relatives who have witnessed a decline in the relationship can be used. Other evidence can also be presented - for example, if the husband had moved out of the home due to your friendship.

Malice has been defined as acts constituting unjustifiable conduct causing the injury complained of. Evidence of such malice includes the fact that Defendant (you) knew of the marriage between the parties, and acted intentionally in a way likely to affect the marriage. The spouse doesn't have to prove that you are the reason that the marriage broke up, just that you are a reason that the love and affection between the husband and wife has diminished.

Without knowing all the facts and circumstances and the details of your relationship, it's impossible to therefore tell you whether or these elements can be satisfied. Indeed, you are likely in a better position to know this being familiar with your relationship. What is important to realize is that you don't have to have a sexual relationship to be liable for alienation of affection -even an intimate relationship is enough.

That said, you have stated you are simply friends. Being friends with a spouse is not unlawful in any way -lots of spouses have male or female friends and don't claim alienation of affection. Simple acts like visiting one another, hanging out with one another (even if going shopping or out to eat with one another), etc. would not, in my opinion, be enough to constitute an alienation of affection claim.

Furthermore, proving that you acted intentionally to break up the marriage will be difficult, absent proof, such as statements from witnesses that they heard you say that, or emails or letters that you wrote the spouse saying how you wanted her to get a divorce, leave her husband, that you wanted to be with her, etc. If you thought you were just being a good friend and never had any intention of breaking up their marriage, there cannot be an alienation of affection claim.

Please let me know if you have follow-up questions or need clarification. I am here to help.

RobertJDFL, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 11877
Experience: Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
RobertJDFL and 4 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you

Thank you for your question.

Your question asks if he has a good case for suing you, as opposed to a good case for winning the lawsuit which are different things. In NC you can be sued for alienation of affection (seducing the spouse of another) and criminal conversation (sexual acts with the spouse of another), but the suing party always has to prove her case by the preponderance of the evidence.

Of course, even being sued for such a thing is problematic. Such lawsuits can expose both parties to being privy to personal and intimate information that is often embarrassing to disclose.

It sounds as if you have not been served yet. Sometimes, spouses use such threats to strengthen their domestic suits against their spouses. It is not against the law to befriend someone of the opposite sex. If an lawsuit is brought without sufficient grounds, there are strong remedies you can take.

If you do get served, make sure you retain an attorney right away. You will only have 30 days to respond. An efficient attorney may be able to use discovery requests and depositions early on to give you a strong defense. Her attorney has only heard her side of the story at this point, and bringing certain statements to his attention, such as the ones you mention in your question, may greatly help you.

I hope this helps. If you are satisfied with this response, please follow up with a favorable rating. Best of luck.

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
< Previous | Next >
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL

Meet The Experts:

  • Ely


    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
< Last | Next >
  • Ely's Avatar


    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
  • LawTalk's Avatar


    Attorney and Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
  • Dimitry K., Esq.'s Avatar

    Dimitry K., Esq.


    Satisfied Customers:

    I provide family and divorce law advice to my clients in my firm.
  • Tina's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    JD, 17 years legal experience including family law
  • P. Simmons's Avatar

    P. Simmons


    Satisfied Customers:

    16 yrs. of experience including family law.
  • Barrister's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    Attorney with 15 years experience
  • AttorneyTom's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:


Related Family Law Questions