Adultery May Soon Be Legal in New Hampshire

Technically, it’s a crime to cheat on your spouse in New Hampshire, though the anti-adultery law hasn’t been enforced in more than 10 years. But soon, you may only need to worry about the moral ramifications of stepping out on your husband or wife, not the potential legal ones. Rep. Tim O’Flaherty, a Democrat, sponsored a House bill to repeal the statute, which dates back to the early 1800s, the AP reports. The House passed the bill; if the Senate does the same on Thursday (and it’s expected to, the Washington Post reports), the governor has said she will likely sign it, meaning it would go into effect January 1.

Adultery is currently a misdemeanor punishable by a fine as high as $1,200. O’Flaherty held a public hearing last month on his measure, and the only person to argue in favor of keeping the adultery ban was a man who once attempted to file a criminal adultery complaint against his wife; she was never charged with a crime. His argument: “If we retain adultery as a crime, we may deter an otherwise law-abiding citizen … from falling into the trap of that repugnant behavior.” (Maybe he’s also the guy who wrote this letter to the editor arguing for the ban to remain intact?) Interestingly, the anti-adultery law defines adultery as between a man and a woman: “intercourse from which spurious issue [a child born out of wedlock] may arise.” Adultery is currently a crime in 21 states.

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Photo Credit: Flickr, katietegtmeyer


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Janice Thompson
Janice Thompson2 years ago

Then a crime of passion should be legal too!

Catrin K.
Catrin N2 years ago

Wow ,who is the government to tell us if adultery is legal or not obviously there was no "enforcement" or we would have prisons on every street corner. While i do not condone this behavior i think this should not be a crime but handled between the parties involved .

Elena T.
Elena Poensgen2 years ago

Thank you :)

ScoTT S.
ScoTT S2 years ago

You cheat, I catch you, I change the locks. Deal with it. And I'd expect no less if I was the one who cheated.

Frank S.
Past Member 3 years ago

If you have to resort to cheating on your husband or wife, its quite obvious that you married to the wrong person.
BTW the grass is not greener on the other side of the fence

Eric Lees
Eric Lees3 years ago

Get government out of our lives. They have no business telling us what to eat, believe, or who we sleep with. If you commit adultry you have your spouse to deal with.

Anteater Ants
Anteater Ants3 years ago

Which century is it?

NO MORE FWD to Ana Marija
ANA MARIJA R3 years ago

Thank you for sharing.