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Why you can sue an ex after they break off your engagement

A legal expert explains why someone who was engaged can sue their former partner.

Picture: Pixabay.com

CAPE TOWN – Picture this: You’re engaged and move into a flat with your future spouse. But as time passes, you realise they’re romantically involved with someone else. Your partner later tells you to leave the flat and denies you were ever engaged.

This was the case for one South African woman who approached the courts after her fiancé started seeing someone else while they were engaged.

Brendan Swart, a lawyer from Gerhard Botha and Partners, was involved in the case. He explained that an engagement is a verbal contract between two parties. With enough evidence, a party could claim damages for wedding preparations, among other things.

“You’ll need to prove the engagement. It’s a contract concluded between two parties to marry one another by a certain date. That contract is governed by our law of contracts. If you breach this contract, there are consequences. You are entitled to sue for losses. The most common would be wedding preparations. We know that can run into an enormous amount of money.”

Swart further explained the process of suing for emotional damages.

Listen to the audio for more.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)

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