Charlotte Criminal Conversation Attorneys

Despite the name, criminal conversation is a civil cause of action related to adultery. “Conversation” is an old English euphemism for sexual intercourse.

Like alienation of affection, it is a claim against the third party who had sexual intercourse with the spouse of another prior to any separation of the spouses.

If a plaintiff does not have direct evidence of sexual intercourse, criminal conversation can still be proven by circumstantial evidence showing that the plaintiff’s spouse and the third party had the opportunity and the inclination to engage in sexual intercourse.

Criminal conversation is often described as a strict liability action in that a claim may succeed even if the third party was unaware of a marriage. Unlike alienation of affection, a plaintiff is not required to prove love and affection in the marriage or any negative consequence to the marriage.

As a separate matter, adultery is a crime in North Carolina (albeit rarely prosecuted).

If any man and woman, not being married to each other, shall lewdly and lasciviously associate, bed and cohabit together, they shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.

North Carolina General Statutes § 14-184. Fornication and adultery

There is a three-year statute of limitations for an action for criminal conversation.

If you are interested in filing a claim for criminal conversation, contact our law firm today for a consultation.

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