- Associated Press - Saturday, June 14, 2014

WINSTON SALEM, N.C. (AP) - A Forsyth County judge has ruled that North Carolina’s law allowing people to sue their spouse’s lover and collect damages violates constitutional protections on free speech and free expression.

The Winston-Salem Journal reports (https://bit.ly/1jr21wd ) that Judge John O. Craig on Wednesday rejected arguments that the state had a legitimate interest in protecting the sanctity of marriage. The judge argued that people use these laws to blackmail their spouses.

North Carolina is one of six states with alienation of affection laws, which allow people to sue their spouse’s lover if they can prove that person caused the couple’s marriage to fall apart.

Wake Forest University family law professor Suzanne Reynolds says Craig appears to be the first North Carolina Superior Court judge to challenge the constitutionality of the law.


Information from: Winston-Salem Journal, https://www.journalnow.com

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