In mid-December, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit (Chicago Federal Court) issued an opinion that is worth attention. In that case, the wife suspected her husband of serial infidelity, so she put what is called an automatic rule on his email account. The effect was that all emails received by the husband and all emails he sent went to the wife’s email server. This was discovered by the husband when his wife’s lawyers produced a series of the transferred emails from the husband to other women and from them to him.
The appeals court ruled that the wife was in trouble with The Wiretap Act if the transfer of the emails from her husband’s account to hers was contemporaneous with their being sent or received by her husband.
The automatic rule may be totally effective; however it can be completely illegal. It sent the divorce action of the parties in the Epstein v. Epstein case to Federal Court (while the divorce pending in the Cook County Divorce Court). The husband sued the wife and her attorney for violating The Wiretap Act. It quantitatively expanded the attorney’s fees in the matter.
This case is still alive, and its result will probably be based on whether the appearance of messages to or from the husband and others on the wife’s computer did so concurrently with their being sent or received by the husband. The wife is in jeopardy. Be careful.