In order to determine if there is a relationship between antiphospholipid antibodies and reduced free protein S levels, we evaluated 21 patients who had an antiphospholipid antibody but had neither a history of venous thromboembolism nor systemic lupus erythematosus (cases) and 55 matched controls, who did not have an antiphospholipid antibody, a history of thrombosis or systemic lupus erythematosus. Cases and controls had similar protein C and antithrombin levels. Six of 21 cases had reduced free protein S antigen levels, compared to 5 of 55 controls (x 2 = 5.823 p <0.025). In addition, the mean free protein S level was significantly lower in cases than in controls (0.30 ± 0.09 units vs 0.39 ± 0.13 units, p <0.01, two-tailed Student’s t-test). We conclude that antiphospholipid antibodies are associated with a significant decrease in free protein S levels, and that this acquired free protein S deficiency may contribute to the thrombotic diathesis seen in patients with antiphospholipid antibodies.