If my fiance has recently called off our engagement, what is my obligation regarding deposits put down for the wedding vendors?

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If my fiance has recently called off our engagement, what is my obligation regarding deposits put down for the wedding vendors?

She had placed the deposits on the vendors and wants me to reimburse her for half. Am I legally responsible for half of these costs? I did stupidly saying a message saying I would before it got ugly but there was no contract. Also, she wants me to reimburse her for half of the engagement party that her parents through us as a gift. I don’t feel that is my responsibility because they would not have asked us for the money if she didn’t walk out. Am I responsible for those costs as well?

Asked on January 21, 2016 under Family Law, New York

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

No, you don't need to reimburse her:
1) A gift (the party) is a gift: once it is given, neither the giver nor the giver's family has any right to get it back or, in this case, get any compensation for it.
2) Possibly, if *you* had called off the engagement, you might have an obligation under one or another theory of law to cover some (or maybe even all) of the cost of the deposits. But you write that *she* called it off. She may not recover money from you which is spent or owed or wasted due to HER actions; the law does not people cause financial harm or other injury (including to themselves) and then be compensated for doing so.


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