Can Daddy Sue Santa Claus for Kissing Mommy?

I saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus. Under the mistletoe. She even tickled Santa under his beard.

Christmas Time is for the children. The idea of a child walking in on their mother kissing Santa Claus has to be traumatic. Was Santa Claus bringing the child gifts as a way to buy their love while seducing their mother? What is Santa’s evil purpose for kissing the child’s mother? Who is Santa to judge who is on the Naughty List, based on his own conduct?

The only way the situation could be worse for the child would be further learning their parents and Santa have an odd polygamous relationship.

What of the father? Could Daddy sue Santa Claus for being the paramour threatening his marriage to Mommy?

Santa-AlienationDaddy could sue Santa Claus if the family lived in Hawaii, Mississippi, New Mexico, North Carolina, South Dakota, or Utah, because those are the only six states left that allow the common law cause of action for alienation of affection. Fitch v Valentine, 959 So 2d 1012, 1036 [Miss 2007].

The other forty-four states have eliminated the tort of alienation of affection as a matter of public policy, either by statute or court opinion. (See, California Civil Code § 43.5, which states no cause of action arises for alienation of affection).

According to the Supreme Court of Mississippi:

Alienation of affections is the only available avenue to provide redress for a spouse who has suffered loss and injury to his or her marital relationship against the third party who, through persuasion, enticement, or inducement, cause or contributed to the abandonment of the marriage and/or the loss of affections by active interference.

Brent v. Mathis, 2014 Miss. LEXIS 557, 6-7 (Miss. Nov. 6, 2014).

Daddy could argue that Santa Claus bringing Mommy gifts, with discovery possibly revealing that Santa himself planted the mistletoe, could have been the “persuasion, enticement, or inducement,” that caused Mommy either to abandon her marriage to Daddy or Daddy’s loss of her affections by Santa’s active interference in their marriage.

Now, what about the poor child who walked in on their mother kissing Santa Claus? Under the November 2014 holding from the Mississippi Supreme Court:

“…[C]hildren do not have standing to sue for alienation of affection, because the children do not have a “colorable interest” in the alienation of one parent’s affections toward the other, nor do they suffer an ‘adverse effect’ from a defendant who is the cause of that alienation of marital affections.”

Brent, at *15-16.

Stated otherwise, the tort of alienation of affection exists to protect the “marital relationship, not the familial relationship as a whole.” Brent, at *8.

The legal options for the victim father could only be sought in a half of dozen states, while the child is completely without legal recourse for Santa’s seduction of Mommy to destroy their family. The best solution if marriage counseling fails, is for Daddy to divorce Mommy, secure custody of the child, and write a tell all book on how he was on the losing side of a love triangle with Santa called The Real Naughty List: Santa Claus’ War on Nice Guys.

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Josh Gilliland
Josh Gilliland is a California attorney who focuses his practice on eDiscovery. Josh is the co-creator of The Legal Geeks, which has made the ABA Journal Top Blawg 100 Blawg for 2013 to 2016, and was nominated for Best Podcast for the 2015 Geekie Awards. Josh has presented at legal conferences and comic book conventions across the United States. He also ties a mean bow tie.