The Miss. Court of Appeals settled an age old question last week: it’s not cheating if you don’t get caught(within 3 years)—at least not when it comes to getting sued. Here is the Court’s opinion in Cheated on vs. Dude Who Cheated with Spouse.

Facts:

Yep. It’s another alienation of affection case. The relevant facts are:

  1. cheating/ affair
  2. affair ends
  3. three years elapses
  4. affair discovered
  5. lawsuit filed

The trial court granted summary judgment to the defendant. A unanimous Court of Appeals affirmed, ruling that the statute of limitations elapsed because the affair ended more than three years before the filing of the lawsuit. The Court rejected plaintiff’s contention that the discovery rule applied.

My Take:  

This was a weird fact pattern involving a goofy cause of action. So we shouldn’t be surprised when it led to a questionable decision.

Cheaters everywhere applaud the Court’s decision as a sensible limitation on suing people for screwing around. There are probably a lot people who were screwing around with someone else’s spouse more than three years ago who are sleeping easier tonight.

Too bad the Court of Appeals did not take advantage of the opportunity to call for the abolishment of the entire cause of action.