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The San Francisco businessman who flies to Maui, Hawaii, to meet his married girlfriend for a romantic week in paradise; the Memphis, Tenn., nurse who travels to the coast for a night of gambling and drinking with her married Biloxi, Miss., boyfriend; the Indianapolis lawyer who drives to Chicago to meet a married paralegal for fun and frolic on the Miracle Mile; and the married Texas oil man who meets his also-married paramour in her hometown of Santa Fe, N.M., for a couple of days of shopping and dining — these undercover lovers could find themselves as defendants in alienation of affection lawsuits filed by aggrieved spouses in states where that arcane tort still exists. Hawaii, Mississippi, Illinois and New Mexico are four of only seven states that still maintain a cause of action for alienation of affection. The other three states are North Carolina, South Dakota and Utah.

All but two states — Louisiana and Alaska — have recognized statutory or common-law actions for this tort at one time or another. See Oldhausen v. Brown, 372 So. 2d 787 (La.Ct.App.1979). Despite this virtual uniformity, however, 41 states and the District of Columbia have abolished actions for alienation of affection — either statutorily or judicially.

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