Dating Magazine

What Happens To The Engagement Ring When Things Go South?

By Therealsupermum @TheRealSupermum
ID 10070351 300x300 What Happens To The Engagement Ring When Things Go South?Some couples opt for a long engagement while others are engaged only briefly before marriage. The average engagement length in the United States has dropped by three months since 2008. The previous average of 18 months is now 15 months.

The length of the engagement depends on circumstances. If one party is serving in the military this is a reason for an extended engagement. Others are simply not in a rush to tie the knot while some brides need a year or more to plan their wedding.

A long engagement doesn’t guarantee a successful marriage nor does a brief engagement or none at all foretell doom.

Regardless of the length of an engagement, sometimes things go wrong. No one wants to countenance the prospect of an engagement going bad but it happens.

What is the proper etiquette to follow when a couple decides to break their engagement? Who keeps the ring?

That depends on whom you ask. Miss Manners, the quintessential etiquette queen, believes the engagement ring goes back to the fiancé no matter what the circumstances are.

On the other hand, the status of the engagement ring depends on who called off the engagement. If it was the bride’s choice, the ring should be returned to the man. If it is the groom’s decision to take a powder, the woman keeps the ring.

Hopefully, this scenario is not one you will face personally but if it is and a decision can’t be reached, your only option may be court.

An engagement ring is considered a gift in some courts. A gift is something the giver intended as a present and delivered to the recipient. The recipient accepted the item, qualifying it as a gift. However, the court may consider the ring a ‘conditional gift.’ Essentially, the gift is not ultimate until the wedding occurs.

The majority of courts consider the gift of an engagement ring as an indirect condition of marriage and the mere acceptance of the proposal and the ring does not constitute a ‘deal.’ If the marriage falls through the ring goes back to the donor.

Some courts view the swap of an engagement ring as comparable to a contract rather than a provisional gift. The ring symbolizes the agreement between two people to wed. If the marriage doesn’t take place, the two parties, the groom-to-be and bride-to-be are restored to their previous positions as in not engaged. The person who first had the ring gets it back.

Some courts employ the ‘fault-based’ rule when deciding who gets the ring. When the woman breaks the engagement this amounts to breaking a contract. Because the bride-to-be fudged on the contract, she is required to give up the ring; likewise, when a groom breaks the contract.

Other judges don’t care what caused the engagement break-up and treat the case much as they would a no-fault divorce.

If you end up in a “fault” jurisdiction court, consideration may be given to why the engagement ended, and by whom, in determining who keeps the ring. However, if you are in a no-fault jurisdiction the court doesn’t care why the engagement ended, only that the wedding did not occur. The donor gets the ring back.


Some couples, recognizing they are facing an extended period of time before they actually marry, may choose a promise ring rather than an engagement ring. The engagement ring is presented when the wedding date gets closer.

A promise ring symbolizes more than just ‘dating’ yet not quite engaged. It serves to strengthen the connection between two people that may be separated by distance and circumstances.

This article written by  WhiteFlash –  best provider designer engagement rings in Houston.

 What Happens To The Engagement Ring When Things Go South?

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By Polyamorous Dating Trials
posted on 06 September at 16:54
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