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Can You Sue the Party Who “Stole the Affections” of Your Spouse?

During divorce, “alienation of affection” refers to a situation where a spouse believes that another man or woman stole the affections of his/her spouse. Emotions typically fly high in this type of situation. uses “alienation of affection” to describe lawsuits filed against third-party lovers or “home wreckers.” The claim is that the actions of the third party caused the spouse to lose affection and leave the other spouse.

This law used to exist in New York and many other states, but today only a few states still have alienation of affection laws: Hawaii, Illinois, Mississippi, New Mexico, North Carolina, South Dakota and Utah.

The Alienation of Affection Law

New York was the first state to establish an alienation of affection law in 1864, but at that time, it only applied to men, and men could sue another man for stealing his wife from him. The law regarded women as property back then, and women did not have the same legal right to sue for damages until later on, when they were no longer regarded as property. The law later evolved into being a way to preserve and protect families. However, most courts eventually abolished the law for a number of reasons, and among them was seeing that the law fostered revenge rather than reconciliation.

What About Dating While Divorce Is Pending?

As you fast forward to 2017, while there’s no legal action to sue someone for dating your spouse while divorce is pending, that does not mean dating during divorce is a good idea. In fact, it could negatively influence your case and cause judges to rule against you in custody or child support cases. Potentially, the emotional harm to children is substantial because it exposes them to further confusion and upset. Most judges would view you as insensitive to your children’s needs if you dated while your divorce was pending.

Do You Have Questions about Divorce? Consult with a Divorce Lawyer.

It is important to consult with a lawyer early on in your divorce case so you can avoid actions that would further complicate divorce. Attorney Chris Palermo offers compassionate legal representation that helps guide you through a challenging divorce.

New York Child Support

Never feel that your situation for collecting child support is hopeless. NY Law provides a number of options that your family law attorney can take to help you enforce child support payment.

In fact, there are administrative actions you can take based on New York State Child Support that can be administratively executed without having to go to court. Your ex spouse will receive a notice that explains the administrative process, the time frame involved and instructions for complying or challenging the payment instruction action. It also explains the consequences of not responding. Money for child support can be collected through:

Depending on how long you haven’t received child support or the total amount of past-due support owed, more than one of the above actions may occur at the same time.

If the administrative process doesn’t handle the problem, then your attorney can take the matter to court. Through a court hearing, a judge has the authority to do the following:

Don’t hesitate to consult with a lawyer if you’re having problems collecting child support. Long Island divorce attorney Chris Palermo has years of experience and can advise you on the best course of action to deal with your issues.


All seems so final when a divorce ends and the court delivers final judgments for child support, custody and visitation. However, people in all walks of life often have problems with judgments post divorce. Their ex spouses don’t come through with child support payment or keep visitation schedules. So, what can you do? “Enforcement” is the word used when you seek legal help to enforce a court order because your ex is not complying with settlement agreements or the court’s decisions.

People Magazine recently published an article that Denise Richards filed a $1.2 million lawsuit against her ex husband Charlie Sheen because she was having trouble collecting child support. According to a source for the article, Denise took legal action to protect their children’s trust. As part of the divorce, a trust was set up for their children Sam, 11 years old and Lola, 10 years old. Sheen paid millions to cover up an HIV scandal and is not pulling in the $10 million a year that he was formerly from acting work. Denise Richards said that collecting child support payments has been like pulling teeth.

When income situations change significantly, you have the option to seek modification of an existing court order. Non-complying with a judgment is never the right solution because it can put lead to enforcement actions and even put you in contempt with court orders.

Everyday people often face problems too, like an ex spouse who promised to pay for summer camp or college and later reneges on the agreement. Unfortunately the children are the ones who suffer.

If you’re struggling with enforcement problems, consult with attorney Chris Palermo. As an experienced Long Island divorce lawyer Chris offers compassionate legal counsel and can help you enforce custody and child support agreements.