If my adult stepdaughter accessed cell phone texts between my wife and myself, what recourse do I have?

UPDATED: Jun 20, 2011

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If my adult stepdaughter accessed cell phone texts between my wife and myself, what recourse do I have?

One of my stepdaughters entered my home by invitation. However while in the house, she obtained the cell phone belonging to my wife without permission and read and shared all texts between me and my wife with her two other sisters.The emotional damages are substantial. The relationship damages are not repairable. They have used these protected communications to attack me personally and to fulfill a promise one of the girls made a year or two earlier to, “do anything within my power to breakup this marriage”. I feel as if I have been violated. Do I have an invasion of privacy case?

Asked on June 20, 2011 under Personal Injury, Utah


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

What your step-daughter did was wrong and could be subject to a legal action for invasion of one's privacy which is a tort. I understand why you would be and are upset if personal and private information was taken and given to others resulting in your embarrassment and hard feelings all around.

The difficulty is proving in terms of dollars and cents what your damages would be for the invasion. In every civil lawsuit liability and damages must be proved by the plaintiff. The challenge I see for you as to the wrong by your step-daughter is proving with certainty the dollar amount for her wrongful conduct.

Hiring an attorney for your dispute could very well cost more than what your case is worth. To evaluate your claim for damages, do you have any actual damages to show other than humiliation, embarassment and hurt feelings?

Good luck.


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