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Ruining a Husband’s Loving Marriage with His Wife – Results in $8.8 Million Non-Dischargeable Debt

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  • North Carolina law requires the following elements for the State Court determination of liability and damages:
    • Husband and Wife were happily married
    • Genuine love and affection were present between the couple
    • The wrongful and malicious acts produced and brought about the loss and alienation of love and affection
  • Husband sued the paramour in State Court and won
  • Paramour filed an adversary proceeding.
  • It is important to note that the wife also worked in the husband’s business which resulted in an economic loss to the Husband
  • State Court awarded the following to the Husband:  $1.2 million in economic business and loss of his wife’s services to his business; $6,645,936 for punitive damages, which was 3x the compensatory award.
  • The “malicious and willful” paramour filed bankruptcy asserting that the law was based upon antiquated torts that Congress did not intend to except from discharge.

Court Ruling:

  • None of the cases based upon NC law were ever overturned.
  • Held that the $8.8 million debt was non-dischargeable.
  • 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found that a judgment for alienation of affection was non dischargeable pursuant to Section 523(a)(6).

Moral of Story:    Don’t break up a loving marriage; especially when you are in North Carolina