Love can be a many splendid thing... until it leads to a lawsuit. Love-gone-wrong lawsuits can be particularly nasty.
After all, hell hath no fury like a woman (or man) scorned.
As you figure out how you'll be celebrating Valentine's Day, here are five ways that romances-gone-sour can lead to lawsuits and other legal consequences:
- Breaking up (and moving out) is hard to do. You didn't give her things back? Be ready for a lawsuit. How do you know what belongs to her and what belongs to you? It's not a divorce, but if you've been living with someone for a considerable amount of time, it may sure feel like one. Consider a cohabitation agreement to avoid conflict.
- Itching for justice after an STD infection. Did a recent Romeo or Juliet give you herpes? You can sue for that! There's actually a legal cause of action for wrongful transmission of a sexually transmitted disease; failure to disclose an STD infection may also be unlawful, depending on your state's laws.
- Online dating disasters. Over the past few years, there have been a few notable lawsuits against online dating companies. Some suits seek compensation for injuries and criminal acts committed by dates they met online. In one recent case, a woman sued Match.com for setting her up with a crazy man who later stabbed her and left her for dead.
- Valentine's Day FAIL. Now, there's no real legal cause of action for not giving someone a Valentine's Day present. But if your lover goes cuckoo, like one woman allegedly did in Ohio, you might be able to sue for assault. This woman in question allegedly frightened her boyfriend so badly that he barricaded himself in a room. She was booked on the charge of menacing.
- Divorce. If 50% of all marriages end in divorce, then how many of those marriages end on Valentine's Day? According to The New York Times, February is a big coming out month -- for coming out of your affair, that is. It's a common time for spouses or significant others discover the "other" significant other, through credit card bills and misplaced gifts.
- Divorce Lawyers Love Day After Valentine's Day (FindLaw's Greedy Associates)
- Woman Wins $900K in eHarmony Herpes Lawsuit (FindLaw's Injured)
- Match.com Sued: Love Seekers Claim Site Full of Fake Profiles (FindLaw's Legally Weird)