If a man calls off the wedding, should his jilted bride be expected to give back her engagement ring?
One Australian man certainly thinks so.
Edwin Shien Bing Toh split from his fiancée just 10 days before the couple’s wedding. When the pair met to discuss belongings, he said that they agreed to give everything back that they had bought for each other.
His ex-fiancée, Winnie Chu Ling Su, reportedly asked for the shoes Toh was wearing (which he promptly took off) as well as a wallet and various other gifts.
But when Su asked for his $15,500 (£9540) engagement ring back, his ex point blank refused.
Not only that but she declined to hand over an expensive watch, a Louis Vuitton bag, an iPhone, $1000 (£615) cash and two wedding bands.
Toh promptly decided to sue his ex-fiancée for the items he believed he was owed.
To his surprise, the magistrate denied his request. He said that Su’s response of literally taking the shoes from Toh’s feet was likely to be an “emotional” one and noted that Toh’s decision to give them back was probably because he “felt a little guilty.”
When it came to the engagement ring, the magistrate was firm. “The gift of an engagement ring should be seen as unconditional,” he commented. “Many gifts are given in happy times and with optimism. Sometimes that optimism is borne out, sometimes it isn’t.”
“Why would the law treat a gift of a ring between same sex couples as different? Or between couples who give a ring in anticipation of a de facto relationship starting and prospering?”
Despite several brides in the UK and Australia being ordered to give back their engagement rings, the magistrate said it is no longer possible to sue someone for breach of a promise to marry in Australia.
The only thing that Su was required to hand back were the wedding bands as they had been “bought in contemplation of marriage” along with the £615 in cash from the couple’s joint account.
A-listers too have been faced with the prospect of handing back their engagement ring. At the beginning of this year, Lady Gaga gave back her mega rock to actor Taylor Kinney. However, she did hang onto it for a while just in case of a reconciliation between the pair.
Last year, Mariah Carey famously refused to hand over her $10 million (£776,500) engagement ring following her split from Australian billionaire James Packer.
Would you do the same?
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