Cheating dad dies, leaving alimony for his mistress.

“According to the law, me and my kids have to pay a woman who cheated on her husband with me. Does that make any sense?”

Ms. A reached for the sleeping pill bottle she had barely stopped taking after receiving a judgment last month. Her deceased husband’s common-law wife had won a declaratory judgment action against her children, meaning that her elementary school-aged children would have to pay money to a woman who had an affair with their sleepy dad. Unable to comprehend the verdict, she took to the internet, where some communities criticized the ruling.

Won the adultery case— but the affair woman “wants her money back”

The story goes like this. Ms. A stamped her marriage license with her husband, Mr. B, in 2013, and they had two beautiful children. However, Ms. A’s wish to “build a happy family” was not easily realized: Mr. B started an affair with a woman named Ms. C. Mr. B moved out of the house to get a studio apartment and never came to celebrate their second child’s birthday. In 2018, Ms. A filed a “bigamy lawsuit” against Mr. B and Ms. C, claiming that their illegal behavior had destroyed her family and that she should be paid 50 million won in alimony.

The court sided with Ms. A. B and C admitted to having an affair, and the court ordered C to pay A approximately $20 million. B died while the case was pending and was not named as a defendant in the judgment.

Shortly after the alimony was paid, Mr. C filed an action for recovery against Ms. A. In 2005, the Supreme Court ruled that “joint tortfeasors are jointly and severally liable to creditors, but each of them has a certain share of the burden,” and that “when one of the joint tortfeasors pays more than his share of the burden and obtains a joint discharge, the other joint tortfeasors are entitled to recover in proportion to their share of the burden”.

In other words, Mr. B and Mr. C are “joint tortfeasors” who committed a “wrongful act”. Mr. C wants to recover Mr. B’s share of the money he paid to Mr. 안전놀이터A because it would be unfair for him to be held solely responsible for the wrongdoing. Ordinarily, C would sue B as a joint tortfeasor, but because B is deceased, C is suing A, who inherited B’s debt. C is also suing A’s children. Since the children inherited B’s debt, they’re demanding payment.

Court says, “You inherited your dead husband’s and father’s debts, pay up”

The court sided with Ms. C in both cases. First, the court did not accept Mr. A’s request to dismiss the lawsuit. Mr. A argued that “Mr. C was the one who compensated Mr. B for damages due to his fraudulent relationship with Mr. B, and it would be contrary to the purpose of the compensation system and an abuse of his rights to seek compensation from the children who inherited the debt due to Mr. B’s death.” However, the court said that “based on the evidence presented, it cannot be said that Mr. C’s lawsuit violates the principle of good faith or constitutes an abuse of his rights in violation of public order and morality.” The court ruled that since Mr. B and Mr. C were 5:5 responsible for the joint misconduct, Mr. A and the children should pay Mr. C back half of the alimony, about 10 million won. Ms. A appealed, but her claim was rejected by the second court.

“I’ve never studied law, but isn’t the law supposed to be above common sense?” A’s voice cracked as the court found that C’s claim was not against “public order and good morals.

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