Keith E. Spero


Legal writers have long maintained that a wife should be allowed to bring an action for loss of consortium, even though the injury to her husband was due to the negligence-as opposed to the intentional misconduct-of the defendant. Most courts have traditionally held, however, that a wife has no such cause of action, advancing such reasons as a fear that the injury to the wife is too remote or indirect, that to allow the action would result in a double recovery to husband and wife for the same injury, and that since a wife has no legal right to her husband's services, she can have no claim for loss of conjugal affection and social comfort. Still other courts argue that since a wife had no such right of action at common law, she still has none, despite the passage of the Married Women's Acts, since those statutes merely removed disabilities but created no new rights in women. In recent years an ever increasing number of more liberal courts have taken the view that a wife should have the same right of action for loss of consortium as her husband, rejecting each of the old arguments with logic and an appreciation of the existing realities of the modern world and of the relationship between the sexes.