A lawsuit in North Carolina related to the end of a marriage has garnered a great deal of media coverage lately.  The Charlotte Observer reported that Philadelphia Eagles defensive lineman, Fletcher Cox, is being sued by a Huntersville, North Carolina man.  The suit alleges Fletcher Cox seduced the man’s wife and ruined their marriage.

One thing that makes this case so interesting to many readers is that a claim of this nature is prohibited in most states.  North Carolina is one of only a handful of states that still permits a claim for alienation of affection.  These other states include Hawaii, Illinois, Mississippi, New Mexico, South Dakota and Utah. Like the majority of the country, Delaware prohibits actions for alienation of affection.  In 1972 the First State passed legislation that expressly prohibits such claims here.  Specifically, Section 3924 of Title 10 of the Delaware Code provides,

The rights of action to recover sums of money as damages for alienation of affections, criminal conversation, seduction, enticement, or breach of contract to marry are abolished. No act done in this State shall operate to give rise, either within or without this State, to any such right of action. No contract to marry made or entered into in this State shall operate to give rise, either within or without this State, to any cause or right of action for its breach.

We will have to wait to see what the outcome of this case is in North Carolina.

 Leslie Spoltore focuses her practice on family law, handling all aspects of the Delaware Family Court’s jurisdiction including, divorce, alimony, property distribution, prenuptial agreements, adoption, guardianship, permanent guardianship, child support, child custody, protection from abuse. She works out of the firm’s Wilmington, DE office and can be reached at 302-840-1110 or at Leslie.Spoltore@Obermayer.com