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Although there are no formal requirements for you to enter into a valid engagement, there is a question whether you can be sued for breaking up an engagement. In the past, the aggrieved person could claim for breach of promise under the common law.
However, the law is always changing.
In the South African case Van Jaarsveld v Bridges (click here for the full case) the court dismissed a woman’s claims for damages. The Court held that the law relating engagements is outdated.This decision was confirmed in Cloete v Maritz (click here for the full case).
However, you can still be sued by your former fiance or fiancee for actual expenses that he or she incurred in the process of preparing for the wedding such as venue hire, decor etc.
You may break off an engagement without any financial consequence if there is a just cause such as your partner being unfaithful.
We hope this has been as useful as it is simple.
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