Alienation of Affection Case In California

In Smith v. Pust (1993) 19 Cal. App. 4th 263 [23 Cal. Rptr. 2d 364], a husband filed a complaint against his wife's therapist who had a sexual encounter with the plaintiff's wife. The complaint alleged causes of action for negligence, bad faith and intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress. (Id. at p. 268.) The court affirmed the trial court's summary judgment in favor of the therapist, finding that the "long-dead causes of action" for alienation of affection or criminal conversation were at the foundation of the husband's complaint. (Id. at p. 269.) Those causes of action were abolished by virtue of Civil Code section 43.5. (Richard P. v. Superior Court, supra, 202 Cal. App. 3d 1089, 1093.) In addition, the Smith court determined there was no independent duty because the husband was not the therapist's patient. ( Smith v. Pust, supra, 19 Cal. App. 4th at p. 273.)