Bride Sues Runaway Groom For $100,000 Wedding

A jilted bride is suing her ex-beau who dumped her days before the wedding, leaving her standing at the altar holding a bill for nearly $100,000 in wedding expenses.

The woman, who is an attorney, claims she pent $30,000 to reserve the banquet hall, $10,000 for the orchestra, $11,000 on flowers and lighting, $5,000 on a wedding gown and $600 on wedding shoes. There was also $70.40 to send wedding cancellation notices.

The suit claims two counts, one of “breach of promise to marry” and “intentional infliction of emotional distress.” The former bride seeks over $95,000 in damages.

Bride sues runaway groom [Chicago Sun-Times] (Thanks to David!)


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  1. thompson says:

    Maybe he didn’t want to marry someone who thought it was a good idea to drop $100k on a wedding?

    • eirrom says:

      I think $10,000 for the orchestra might be a bit much too.

      $70.40 for cancelation notices sounds ok :)

      • Preppy6917 says:

        At .44 per invitation that’s 160 invitations. Assuming 2 guests per invitation that’s 320 guests. At an even $100,000, that’s $312.50 PER GUEST. That’s more than the wedding in Father of the Bride…

        • msbask says:

          To be fair, though, Father of the Bride was from 20 years ago.

        • sprybuzzard says:

          $100,000 is probably everything lumped together, though my friend plans weddings in Philadelphia and said some people do pay $300 per head, which is mind blowing. I can’t imagine having that much money.

    • obits3 says:

      Exactly what I was thinking.

    • Red Cat Linux says:

      I think it’s insane myself. A friend of mine got married and his parents dropped at least that much on the shindig (hotel ballroom overlooking Central Park, ginormous flowers, orchestra, yadda yadda).

      If my parents could afford that, I would have gladly gotten married in blue jeans at the courthouse and used the money to buy our house free and clear.

      The time for Mr. Wishy Washy to back out was NOT Sept 25th for an Oct. 2 wedding. That’s just evil.

      • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

        my parents feel the same way. when i was a kid my dad always said if i ever wanted to get married he’d give me $10k cash to elope – it’d be cheaper
        i’m all for that. my sister eloped while on a business trip in vegas: $165 for the ceremony, $35 for a certified copy of the certificate.
        still had a REALLY nice party at a historical house a few months after she got back for under $1000 including the catering and photographer.

        • Bremma says:

          Yeah. My dad says he’s giving me and my sister 5k each to spend towards our wedding. We can keep anything that’s left over.

          • VATERGrrl says:

            Are we related? ;) My parents (and his) did this, after we’d put together a preliminary budget, and for 5K, we had more than enough for a nice wedding ceremony, reception, honeymoon AND money left over to buy some furniture for our apartment. Our guests still recall the event fondly, ten years later, said it was fun and personal, very “us”.

        • HighontheHill says:

          My wife and I rented a 250 acre boyscout camp complete with 22 cottages, main mess hall with commercial kitchen, 10 acre lake, fishing, hiking, and boating for three days. For $250. We had about 60 guests come and stay for all or part of the weekend and party before, during and after our wedding ceremony. Grand total of $3,000.00 for everything.

          Most everyone had the time of their life.

    • TooManyHobbies says:

      I’d go along with that. I’d drop her as soon as the planning started though, not after some of the money was spent.

      Anyone who thinks this is a good idea and isn’t rich enough to pay for that kind of a bill out of pocket change is bad news from the start.

    • brownhb says:

      who says it was all her? It could have been him as well, or the families, etc.

      • TasteyCat says:

        Barring any evidence to the contrary, I think it’s safe to assume she’s the idiot, or at least mostly the idiot.

        • kennedar says:

          Why is that? I wanted a very small wedding with just immediate family but my mother in law wanted a 200 + person affair. It was easier to let her have her way, considering that she was paying for 1/2. If my husband had left me at the alter though I would have been stuck with the bills because I booked everything in my name. I know I am not the only one like this, I think parents get far more out of a wedding than the happy couple does!

          • magus_melchior says:

            Only if the wedding involves more than 50 people including the catering staff.

            Memo to parents: KEEP IT SMALL! The only thing a large wedding does to a couple is wear them out.

  2. Scooter250 says:

    Love is bliss.

  3. SonarTech52 says:

    The runaway groom can always say all of that stuff was her idea, which is most likely the case.

    • Marlin says:

      Yea that was what I was thinking as well.
      Will she not have to show that those items were not over the top and/or also his idea/control in some way?

      • Azzizzi says:

        He could argue that she still could have had the wedding, but with someone else besides him. All he should be on the hook for is the amount of the cost necessary to change anything that had his name on it, which, I would guess would be very little.

        • Liam Kinkaid says:

          Well, she could also conceivably find another guy to marry with the exact same name. Therefore, her failure to do so caused the change fees.

        • chiieddy says:

          I’ve heard of people who have turned a failed wedding into an opportunity for a black-tie fundraiser for a charity using the $300 – 500/plate fee to pay for the facilities and then donated the rest to charity of choice. They’ll often arrange for last minute auctions and other opportunities to donate more as well.

    • SonarTech52 says:

      And she is suing for the whole amount, wow..

  4. danmac says:


  5. MamaBug says:

    i’m wondering why *she* is the only one losing out on money. Did the groom-to-be not pony up on any of the expenses? or is that still “tradition” to have the bride pay for all? Me and my husband split the bill. Actually, we paid for it together, since, you know, we were going to join our finances and all.

    • El Matarife says:

      If I’m required to pay for the engagement ring you can pay for the wedding.

      • pecan 3.14159265 says:

        I don’t know if anyone is required to do anything, anymore. Wedding traditions have changed a lot. People are getting married at an older age, overall, and that means that each party probably has more to contribute and may not hold to the tradition that parents pay for the wedding – considering their children might very well be years out of college (no longer “the kids”).

        • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

          If I want to marry this girl, and she demands a ring as part of the ceremony of marriage, then yes: I must pay for a ring.

          • crashfrog says:

            Or you must marry a different girl.

            Maybe one who’s a little more flexible about patriarchal rituals?

            • El Matarife says:

              Good luck finding a girl who doesn’t want you to buy her an engagement ring. I mean seriously?

              • FatLynn says:

                Me! Me!

                • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

                  You’re a frog. I’m sure you’d be extatic just to be asked.

              • K-Bo says:

                Given a valid reason to not have one (money better spent on a house to live in ext) and I’ll get married without one. If it’s just an excuse to be cheap, or because he wants to buy himself a ton of expensive toys and not spend money on me, forget it.

                My mom didn’t get an engagement ring, they saved the money for the downpayment on the house. My dad did buy her a good sized diamond many years later, but just because he wanted to, she never asked for it or insisted on it.

              • probablykate says:

                My fiance and I split the cost of my engagement ring. My idea.

                • MamaBug says:

                  that’s what we did. we bought the rings as a package – my engagement and wedding band, his band. it cost about 1K total, spread out in $150 payments. It was because we wanted to, not because it was expected. Now I feel naked without it :/

              • Luckier says:

                I didn’t want an engagement ring or a wedding ring. I just wanted to, you know, be married to my guy. So, find someone like me.

              • Areia says:

                I’m pretty sure I actually told my now-husband that if he got me an engagement ring I’d refuse to marry him. We were poor and had much better things to spend the money on; spending that amount of cash on a piece of jewelry would have been a clear indication of poor financial judgment. Not something I want in a spouse.

                He did buy me an antique diamond ring last year, for our 10 year anniversary. But we both have well-paying jobs now, and it looks lovely next to the vintage wrist watch I got him.

                • HogwartsProfessor says:

                  Aww. I’d say get me something not too expensive now, if you really want to be traditional, and we can upgrade later. As for the wedding, no reason to spend so much money! Something small and intimate and meaningful is just as good if not better than an insanely-expensive princess wedding. I bet the groom in this story had very little to do with the planning.

              • jbandsma says:

                Never wanted an engagement ring, never asked for one, wouldn’t wear diamonds if you paid me. My wedding ring was a plain silver band (I’m allergic to gold). I say was not because the marriage broke up but because I can’t find the ring. I know I’m married, he knows he’s married…that’s all that counts.

              • aloria says:

                I hate diamonds and most other expensive/rare stones. If someone ever ends up getting me an engagement ring, I don’t see how they could manage to spend more than $300 on the thing.

                • JennQPublic says:

                  My engagement ring was right around $300. It’s a pearl ring, and it’s lovely. But because pearls are fragile, I save it for special occasions, and wear a plain gold band for day-to-day.

              • oldwiz65 says:

                My wife did not want an engagement ring, not diamond, not ruby, not any. We got married in a church, did potluck for reception, and spent barely $1000.

              • myCatCracksMeUp says:

                Add me to the list of women who didn’t want an engagement ring. I thought the whole idea is stupid and still do. When you’re just starting out there is always better things to spend money on than that.

                My hubby did get me a diamond ring for our 25th anniversary, and I love it very much and wear it almost every day. I got him a 9′ pool table.

              • Eyeheartpie says:

                Looks like you need to hang out with different girls. My wife also didn’t want an engagement ring, and she just wanted a simple wedding band as a wedding ring. Less than $200 for the thing, and another $150 for mine. Our whole wedding cost was less than $900, which she approved of because she would rather have something more practical, like the house I bought for us shortly before our wedding.

                • Verdant Pine Trees says:

                  I make my own rings at home.

                  No, actually. Rings were about 60 bucks. That’s his and hers sterling silver rings, plus backups for when we inevitably lose them.

      • brownhb says:

        Pretty sure most weddings cost more than a diamond ring.

    • outlulz says:

      You really think the groom had anything to do with planning that wedding?

      • MamaBug says:

        Why wouldn’t he? Mine did, as did my now brother in law, and many of my friend’s husbands. It’s not unheard of.

      • Rachacha says:

        Why sure he did I want a 4 hour open bar, I want my favorite beer at the bar, and it can’t be on a saturday that conflicts with my favorite college sporting event.

  6. pecan 3.14159265 says:

    In before all the comments about how everyone should elope/go to the courthouse/get married behind the dumpster, officiated by a homeless dude/not get married at all/be single/have a BBQ in the yard/spend less than $50/”it’s just a piece of paper”/spend the money on a house/every other reason people have for saying “My preferences are clearly superior to yours.”

    • JennyCupcakes misses her grandson says:

      Not trying to say my preferences are superior to hers, but I am just cheap. I hate that I’m even spending 1c on my reception, let alone $7,500.

      • pecan 3.14159265 says:

        Is it $7,500 well spent? I mean, is the food awesome? Are all of your friends and family going to be there? I hate parties, and I loved my reception because it was a giant party with all of our friends, and we could control the guest list, food, and music.

        • JennyCupcakes misses her grandson says:

          I’m not sure. I’m sort of expecting a whole mess o’ drama once my aunt finds out she’s not invited (closet alcoholic + open bar = big negatory). Honestly, I would have loved to do a small ceremony with just my fiancee and our immediate family but I was told that “feelings would be hurt” if we didn’t have a wedding. =/

          • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

            Which solidifies my argument that a wedding isn’t for you, it’s for your family.

            Which begs the question, why am I the one paying for it?

            • MaxH42 thinks RecordStoreToughGuy got a raw deal says:

              +1. If OTHER people want a party, let THEM throw one. Your obligations to your family and friends do not include altering major life decisions to take into account their sense of propriety.

            • imasqre says:

              My culture has the tradition of giving cash and not gifts. My brother’s wedding was crazy big/nice and I think they got about half paid for through envelopes alone.
              Personally, court house or garden and a kick ass diner with close friends/family for me!

              • YOXIM says:

                In my culture, people actually turn a profit on weddings. No joke. Especially if you have a large family.

              • dangerp says:

                We rented out a reception hall and inn. The inn booked the reservations for people that wanted to spend the night (good idea given the alcohol involved and distance to civilization). We got to control the prices. Once the rent we paid was covered, any additional reservations went into our pocket. It didn’t pay for the wedding, but it sure helped to subsidize it a bit.

                It was nice to get a check from the reception hall as we were leaving!

    • Gtmac says:

      I think you left off the “/irony.” Clearly you believe your preferences on what constitutes a valid comment are superior to others’.

    • Hoot says:

      Behind the dumpster, ha.

      • Evil_Otto would rather pay taxes than make someone else rich says:

        You laugh, but my wife’s cousin got married outside, behind the facility where the reception was. As part of the ceremony, the “aisle” went right by the dumpster. The whole wedding was pretty much like that. I don’t think we stayed very long.

    • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

      $100k is a bit excessive but I can definitely see how people wind up shelling out $10,000+ on a wedding. We had a very simple wedding & reception (coworker did the photography, brother was the DJ, made our own cake, held at the VFW, etc.) and still wound up spending around $4,000 or $5,000.

      It was definitely a lot of money but it was worth it. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime expense and a major life turning point, plus it’s really the last opportunity to see so many friends and family all in one place.

      • pecan 3.14159265 says:

        $100,000 is an unimaginable cost to me, but overall, I think weddings (if you want one) are a worthwhile expense as long as you’re reasonable and sane about it.

        • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

          I completely agree. Plus the money issues are all relative. I also can’t imagine buying a $50,000 car, $600,000 house, or a $200 dinner but people do it every day.

          • Oranges w/ Cheese says:

            A $200 dinner once a year is ok, but I agree with you on the half mill house.

            • qwickone says:

              You clearly don’t live in a major metropolitan area. As with many high ticket items, it varies wildly by where you live.

            • Megalomania says:

              Speak for yourself. Whenever I see a story here about someone’s $80,000 house being foreclosed on, I’m amazed you can buy a house for that cheap (Detroit’s $1 tax traps notwithstanding)

              • HogwartsProfessor says:

                My house cost $52,000, but I live in Bumblebutt Midwest bunghole. Also, it’s tiny. A $600,000 house might not be very big somewhere else.

                I was looking online for a house in the seaside city in California where I used to live, thinking someday I’d like to return. I found a two-bedroom older home that would go for around $125 – 150K here and you know how much it was?


    • Charmander says:

      Well, the first question I would ask is if the wedding expense were GOING to be (assuming the wedding happened) split by the bride and groom? And the reason I ask this is because it seems like the bride did all the planning – putting $$ on the deposit, band, etc. But her planning and putting payments and deposits down doesn’t mean that he didn’t already agree to split the expenses with her.

      If so, yes, I think she should definitely sue. Actually, she should sue anyways because she wouldn’t have spent ANY money at all on wedding stuff if he hadn’t promised to marry her.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        What is he expressed concern over the costs as they were in the planning phase, which were ignored.? What if, through the planning process, he realized how much he did not want to marry her? What if her actions actually caused the marriage to crumble?

        Shouldn’t he be able to countersue for emotional distress?

      • huadpe says:

        Unfortunately for her, if this isn’t in writing, she won’t be able to collect. The Statute of Frauds limits oral contracts to $1000, beyond which courts won’t touch it.

        • Meano says:

          An agreement to marry is not a “contract in consideration of marriage.” Your prenup needs to be in writing.

          Twenty seconds of research tells me that Illinois still allows for suit for breach of promise to marry (740 ILCS 15). Most states don’t allow the action, but the plaintiff isn’t in most states.

          Plaintiff is an attorney and Mr. Salerno appears to be in the hospitality industry; the wedding’s “excess” might not just be reasonable but expected given their careers.

    • aloria says:

      If the amount of money someone is spending on a wedding ends up putting them into insane debt, then yes, our preferences are clearly better than theirs.

      That being said, if you have the money, how you spend it is your prerogative.

    • FerretGirl says:

      :D I knew I loved you for a reason.

    • RayanneGraff says:

      I think it’s pretty damn safe to feel superior to a moron that would spend $100k on a damn WEDDING.

    • Verdant Pine Trees says:

      You know, I got married in Vegas, and having visited the courthouse there, being accosted by a guy who jumped out of the bushes and said, “Psssst!!! … getting married?”…

      I just wanted to tell you, you *can* get married by a guy behind the dumpster.

  7. Hoss says:

    How much was the engagement ring worth?

    • edison234 says:

      It was a Canardly.

    • teke367 says:

      It may vary per state, but I think whoever ends the engagement loses rights to the ring. So, the groom can demand the ring back if the bride breaks the engagement, but the bride gets to keep it if the groom leaves. For the wedding, without some sort of agreement, I imagine they would be equally resonsible for the bills, and I guess the bride is saying the emotional distress accounts for the other half. I’m not sure how that argument holds up legally, but I don’t think the groom would be able to deduct the cost of the ring from his share.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        Case law and some state laws have held that an engagement ring is a considered a “conditional gift” and in the large majority of states the giver of the ring has full legal right to demand it back.

        The most common exception is if the ring is given at the same time as a holiday such as Christmas, Valentine’s Day or a birthday. In these cases, it is sometimes argued that the ring was a non-conditional gift.

        So as cute and romantic it is to propose on these days, legally speaking I do not advise it.

      • Gulliver says:

        Most states are actually a gift in contemplation of marriage. If the marriage does not happen, the gift reverts to the giver. This does vary state to state. The REASON does not matter

  8. Applekid ┬──┬ ノ( ゜-゜ノ) says:

    Did she sign a prenup?

  9. somepoet says:

    How could you leave this part out?

    “The month before the wedding, the groom allegedly attended a bachelor party at the Pink Monkey, 750 S. Clinton, where he engaged in ‘flirtatious and amorous acts in public,’ which included lap dances and other contact with strippers, the suit alleges. The suit alleges he never told his fiance about the lewd acts during the bachelor party.”

    $100,000=Most expensive lap dance ever.

    • danmac says:

      I find it hilarious that the bachelor party is even mentioned…it’s none of her business what he did at the bachelor party as long he didn’t actually have sex with one of the strippers.

      • SonarTech52 says:

        Yeah, I think that is a standard batchelor party..

      • erinpac says:

        Most of the articles mention he was unaccounted for the whole next day, and his friends say they don’t know where he went ‘home’ to.

        Then there’s this part…
        “At some point before the wedding, Salerno began telling people the wedding was off, the suit alleges. Buttitta confronted him Sept. 25, after her sister allegedly spoke with her fiance’s co-worker, who said the wedding was canceled, the suit stated. He initially denied that, but then called off the wedding two days later, the suit stated. “

        Seriously? She has to hear through relatives and his coworkers first?
        There’s no way they spent a year planning this without him being involved in the planning. So he enjoys his party, ducks the rest, and she has the whole bill?

        • Verdant Pine Trees says:

          Yes! I think if people paid attention to that part, they might have some sympathy for her. That’s why I think she’s really suing. How humiliating for her.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      A soon-to-be-wed man partakes in strippers and lap dances at a bachelor party?

      The OUTRAGE!!

    • Murph1908 says:

      Um, sounds like a common bachelor party.

      And anyone who has ever attended one knows rule 1. “Don’t tell the bride shit.”

    • FatLynn says:

      Oh, man, that place is sketchy, even by strip club standards. I get skeeved out walking past it in broad daylight.

    • ARP says:

      The bride is just trying to build up sympathy. She didn’t call off the wedding because off this, she didn’t know about it. And my guess is that if she found out about it, she would have still gone through with the wedding.

      Most likely, one of the groomsmen broke the bro code because his alliances were with the bride. I could SORT OF see that if there was actual sex, but a lappy? C’mon.

  10. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    Nothing like a woman scorned… unles she has a law degree.

  11. cmdr.sass says:

    sounds like the groom dodged a bullet on this one

    • Oranges w/ Cheese says:

      Sadly enough, I was thinking the same.

    • Mythandros says:

      I would agree with that statement. This “Bride” seems like BAD news.

    • Verdant Pine Trees says:

      Did you read this part in the article? as posted by Erinpac above…

      “At some point before the wedding, Salerno began telling people the wedding was off, the suit alleges. Buttitta confronted him Sept. 25, after her sister allegedly spoke with her fiance’s co-worker, who said the wedding was canceled, the suit stated. He initially denied that, but then called off the wedding two days later, the suit stated. “

      Maybe she wanted an over the top wedding. But I say she’s the one who dodged a bullet.

  12. Bridizzle says:

    Is a proposal a “verbal contract”? Those are hard to enforce in court. Or do the plans to make it official qualify as a contract to marry. I would think the contract for the hall is a contract for a “reception” not a marriage. I dunno.. Sounds more like hurt feelings..

    • tchann says:

      Actually, if they had the wedding license, I imagine that could easily count as a written contract to marry. And four days before the wedding, it’s likely they already had the license in hand.

    • sirwired says:

      “Breach of Promise to Marry” is a valid tort in some states. It usually covers the engagement ring (by deciding who gets to keep/pawn it), but I imagine it would extend to pre-paid wedding expenses.

  13. bobloblaw says:
  14. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    Okay, I know she’s a lawyer, so she should probably be smart enough to know that if the wedding was to $100,000 then the groom-to-be would be on the hook for a maximum of $50,000.

    Math, people. Look into it.

    • Hoot says:

      That would be unless he did something that he knew would completely screw it up or mislead her in some way. I can see it happening. I mean, so many people get married so fast nowadays. I feel like they must hardly know the person in many instances.

      I think the verdict is probably in the details here. Like the whole bachelor party nonsense – did she specifically say she wouldn’t be comfortable marrying him if he had lapdances and such? And then he did it anyway and lied and mislead her?

    • tchann says:

      Here’s the question I’ve got – if he knew a year ago he didn’t want to marry her, then strung her along through the entire wedding planning (and all of the downpayments/contract negotiations), just to dump her four days before, then why shouldn’t he be on the hook for all of it?

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        If she can prove that in a court of law, more power to her.

        • erinpac says:

          Apparently he said he changed his mind a year before and didn’t tell her when asked why he was backing out (told his buds though), so she *might* be able to prove that.

      • Mythandros says:

        Please think.

        It takes 2 to get married. Regardless of whether he was a douche or not, that does NOT put him on the hook for the bill. And if he did almost none of the planning? What if the planning was all her doing? Then SHE should be responsible for wanting such a prohibitively expensive wedding, right?

        This smacks of hurt feelings, like a commenter above has said.

        “You ran away on me.. so I’m going to be a bitter, self-entitled, selfish little princess of a lawyer and sue you for the WHOLE cost.”

        This is what my take on the situation is.

        As for his bachelor party… uhm… that kind of thing is VERY VERY common in bachelor parties and I’m sure was not done specifically with hurting her poor little crybaby feelings in mind.

        What if he ran away BECAUSE of her exorbitant spending on the wedding? Then the fault would be entirely with her.

        I guess the point I’m trying to make is.. it takes two to marry. They should split the cost. This lady whose profession is to be a liar.. sorry, lawyer… should realize that and stop trying to be overly litiguous(sp?).

        Although asking a lawyer not to sue someone is like asking a flood not to make everything in your house wet, I guess. Pretty sad state of affairs.

        My two cents.

        • tchann says:

          Heh, I just went off and wrote down everything I thought on the matter, and came to the same conclusion – split the cost. But I can’t argue that the hypothetically scorned woman in me would want him on the hook for all of it. :)

    • Charmander says:

      Yes, I think we can all understand basic math.

      You are missing the point.

      She wouldn’t have spent ONE CENT for any kind of wedding stuff if he hadn’t promised to marry her. So, she should be stuck with $50K in expenses because he reneged on a promise?

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        Should he be stuck for 100% of the wedding because she’s clearly a raging bitch?

        Sorry, but marriage is between two people, and either they are both to blame or neither is to blame. But blame cannot generally be granted to one party only in the case of marriages.

        • JemimaSheep says:

          So he’s the one who “engaged in ‘flirtatious and amorous acts in public,’ which included lap dances and other contact with strippers”, but she’s a raging bitch on no basis other than the fact that the wedding was costing 100K (and we don’t know if that was all her idea)?

          I think your stereotypes are showing.

        • ames says:

          “Should he be stuck for 100% of the wedding because she’s clearly a raging bitch?”

          I should just stop reading your comments.

      • Hoot says:

        Exactly. Who committed the acts that were the deal breaker here and did they have prior knowledge that the acts would be deal breaking? Did he say to her, “Honey, if you spend this much money on our wedding that we will have to pay off for the rest of our lives, I’m not going through with it!” and she did it anyway? Did she tell him that lapdances were a deal breaker and he did it anyway and lied about it?

      • SonarTech52 says:

        I didnt “promise” to marry my wife, I asked her and she said she would. That didnt mean that I intended to marry her or that I promised to marry her(I did in my case.) But I never heard anyone say I promise to marry you..

        • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

          And then take into account if you live in a state that doesn’t validate verbal contracts, haha.

          I verbally promised to marry you, but I signed nothing!

        • Charmander says:

          Perhaps a poor choice of words on my part.

          Replace “promised” with….. “entered into a verbal agreement to ” or “asked her to marry him” or “agreed to marry on this date and began planning a wedding.”

          I think you still get the idea.

          The agreement was there, that he intended to marry her, and she intended to marry him.

          • guymandude says:

            I think you might want to look up the words “offer”, “acceptance” and what they mean.

            • Charmander says:

              Why? They were engaged to be married, had a date set, and presumably, if it was 4 days before the event, a marriage license as well. Pretty clear cut.
              Not sure why I’d need a dictionary.

    • edman007 says:

      Why sue for less? If she is due $50k instead the judge can knock the $100k down to 50k, if she sues for $50k there is no way she will end up with more.

    • Gulliver says:

      Actually this is basic contract law. Did he say he would pay for all of the wedding? Did he say he would pay for any of it? If he had no say or part in the planning, then she made all the decisions, most judges would see that as HER doing. If he signed any of the contracts, then it is likely they both planned it and expected to be compensated for it.

  15. Keter says:

    The bride’s parents are supposed to pay for the wedding. If, like myself, the bride has no living parents, she traditionally is expected to pay. However, the expenses are then supposed to be absorbed into the community property of the marriage, either in the form of payments on loans or credit cards that must be made, or in reduced assets brought into the marriage. No marriage, no mutual absorption of costs.

    This is also why my dress (actually a Chanel-lookalike suit in pale silver-blue) came from Macy’s on clearance, my shoes from DSW on clearance, and my purse from Ross (~$100, and they matched perfectly). The reception was dinner with my husband’s family, there was no honeymoon, and I was back at work the following Monday. I just couldn’t afford anything else. But at least I didn’t get married in Wal-Mart!!!

    • Wombatish says:

      Supposed to pay for it…. if you believe in following that tradition.

      Seriously, why cheap out on your wedding (assuming you wanted a larger one) just to follow tradition? If you -wanted- to save money or divide the expenses that way, that’s one thing, but just because ‘they’ say you’re supposed to is entirely another.

      Whoever wants to (and can) pay for the wedding can offer, and then the bride and groom together can decided. I see a lot paid for “by committee” (some from both parents + sometimes some from the couple) as well.

      • pecan 3.14159265 says:

        Yep. When we decided to get married, we split the cost with my parents. It wasn’t an even split, as we had significantly less money to contribute to our wedding but we aren’t ones to stick to tradition when it seems unreasonable to do so.

  16. Skellbasher says:

    Sounds like a jilted woman on a power trip.

    Unless they had legally binding paperwork that said he would appear at the said time and place and enter into marriage, he’s not on the hook for anything. She incurred those expenses on her own volition.

    Hopefully he gets a decent lawyer himself and smacks this down.

  17. Doubts42 says:

    With what she is spending on a wedding he is getting off cheap by not spending the rest of his life with her.

  18. Bativac says:

    Ten thousand dollars for a goddamn orchestra!??!?!

    I felt bad when my wife and I blew $5k on our wedding!

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      I was wondering the size of the orchestra. For a 100-member orchestra, that’s a dirt cheap $100/person for the night. If it’s a jazz orchestra that’s likely around 18 people and a mid- to upper-ranged $555/person for the night.

  19. swarrior216 says:

    He made a smart move by not getting married.

  20. MTFaye says:

    Okay, its a pretty lousy thing to leave someone at the altar (or a few days before in this case) but I think its ridiculous that she wants him to pay for the entire thing. $100,000 is an absolutely INSANE amount of money to spend on a wedding, anyway. Maybe that’s why he got out of there. I don’t understand people that spend so much at a wedding. Its ONE GOD &#^%ED DAY! An orchestra? $11,00 of flowers? A $5,000 dress and $600 shoes that you’re going to wear ONCE in your life? Absolutely disgusting.

    • Charmander says:

      It doesn’t matter how much the wedding costs. If it offends your sensibilities so much, why don’t you just pretend that it was for $3000.

      Okay, so a woman spent $3000 on wedding stuff, the groom cancels – should she sue him?

      There, how’s that? Can you gain some perspective now? Instead of making it all about how much YOU would spend or what YOU would do. Because it’s not all about you.

      • pecan 3.14159265 says:

        THIS was the point of my post above. It doesn’t MATTER how much the wedding was, or why she spent that amount. If you want to elope and get married by the justice of the peace, that’s what YOU want to do! It doesn’t work for everyone, and it’s certainly not the right decision for everyone else.

        How about you (general you, not YOU) mind your own finances and I (general I, not me) mind my own?

      • quijote says:

        I think the question is who is responsible for the great expense of the wedding. If they both wanted such an expensive wedding, he should help to pay for half of it. But what if he wanted a very small, inexpensive wedding, and she insisted on having a lavish wedding? What if she said something like, “look, this day is important enough to me that I want to blow 100,000k on it. I (or my family) can afford it, so don’t worry about it.” If she decided that she wanted an expensive wedding, then she took responsibility for the cost. Why should he have to pay for the whole thing if he didn’t want all that in the first place!

      • quijote says:

        I think the question is who is responsible for the great expense of the wedding. If they both wanted such an expensive wedding, he should help to pay for half of it. But what if he wanted a very small, inexpensive wedding, and she insisted on having a lavish wedding? What if she said something like, “look, this day is important enough to me that I want to blow 100,000k on it. I (or my family) can afford it, so don’t worry about it.” If she decided that she wanted an expensive wedding, then she took responsibility for the cost. Why should he have to pay for the whole thing if he didn’t want all that in the first place!

  21. GenXCub says:

    This is why gays (me) should be allowed to marry. The amount of drama that would pour from these situations would be better than every reality show in existence.

    • anarkie says:

      Scenario for a movie. 2 gay lawyers get engaged, and one skips at the last minute. Some of the possible humor would be fantastic!!

      Of course, it would have to be over the top, in the name of comedy.

    • MaxH42 thinks RecordStoreToughGuy got a raw deal says:

      Equality WIN! :D

    • MamaBug says:

      I’ve always said that it would be a huge economy boost – the venues, the florists, the state gets money for the license, the music, the caterers, the clothes, the photography, videography, hotel rooms for out-of-towners, rental car of some sort, invitations….it goes on and on and on…

    • HogwartsProfessor says:

      What I’d like to see is a gay couple on Bridezillas! (If I could watch it again….stupid downgraded DTV package….) :(

    • dgh says:

      Gay here too, we got married the day before it turned illegal again in CA. It cost the license, and breakfast after with one of our two witnesses at a greasy spoon in the neighborhood. We’d already bought each other rings years ago (5 bucks each from a Chinese street vendor in front of Macy’s). Total cost, ummmm…. maybe 50 bucks? Everybody cried, but otherwise, sorry – no drama.

      I get really annoyed with people who insist their weddings should be the happiest, biggest, most glorious day of their lives. That’s it, then? No hopes for an even more perfect day, ever again? Poor things.

    • JulesNoctambule says:

      While I personally give a damn because of the whole equal rights thing, I know a lot of people who I’m slowly persuading to change their minds with the financial argument. If the end result is the same, I have no problem taking the low road!

  22. Hi_Hello says:

    i don’t know how deposit works… i figure she got some money back since the wedding was cancelled…

    at least he didn’t do the wedding and then decide not to sign the paperwork and left.

    I’m curious to see what happens…

    • NYGuy1976 says:

      That close to the actual date I doubt she got anything back.

    • Rachacha says:

      Most places want at least a significant deposit (50% or more) several weeks prior to the wedding, and the contract usually states they an keep the money unless they find another event to fill in.

  23. ugly says:

    They both come out ahead here. This is far cheaper than a divorce…

    • KlueBat says:

      Not to mention the years of unhappiness.

    • pinkbunnyslippers says:

      It’s cheaper to keep her. ;)

      • Mythandros says:

        Actually… I’m pretty sure that if this lady is willing to drop 100 large on a wedding.. it will likely be MUCH cheaper in the long run for him to leave her.

    • KyBash says:

      When I met with my lawyer and asked: “How much is this divorce going to cost me?” he replied: “About twice as much as having her killed.”

      Since he was also handling two murder-for-hire cases at that time, I figured he knew what he was talking about.

    • Sparkstalker says:

      My thoughts exactly. Even if he loses, he wins…

  24. cromartie says:

    On the one hand, I’m going to assume that she’s at least marginally well off and could afford some portion of said wedding.

    On the other hand, she’s off the charts controlling and Type A. And $100k on a wedding is a little much.

    And then to turn around and sue….

    I’m with the guy on this one. Run away. Run away as fast as you can.

  25. tailspin says:

    I can’t blame her for suing. The article said he started wanting to back out a year ago, and yet he let her continue to dump huge amounts of money into wedding planning? That’s a total jerk move. Doesn’t matter whether it’s a wedding, a business deal, whatever — if someone invests a lot of money with the verbal promise that the other party will honor their end of the agreement, then when the other party backs out they need to help recoup those costs. You don’t just go “yeah, sorry about the $100,000” and ride off into the sunset.

    As a side note — he went around telling everyone the wedding was off before he even told his fiancee? What a weenie.

    • Red Cat Linux says:

      ^ This.

      I can’t imagine the amount of money I’d have to make to drop six figures on a wedding. Actually, I can’t understand that under any circumstance. I could make a bajillion dollars and it still wouldn’t occur to me to do this.

      However, the only thing that might ethically leave the runaway groom an out is if he told the bride no, and she continued to make plans in defiance of his wish to continue. Backing out at the last is pretty spineless.

      In the end they are both better off.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      If the woman didn’t catch the hints a year before the wedding, well…

      AH f*&# it – woman either don’t catch men’s hints, or they ignore them. My guess is it was obvious he was aloof and not interested, but she ignored the signs becuase he was a catch and she really really REALLY wanted to get married.

      Because statistically, all women want to get married and will ignore all reason and logic to do it.

  26. Boo LaRue says:

    I have no sympathy. I think that weddings of this magnitude are ridiculous. But that’s just me!

  27. Warren - aka The Piddler on the Roof says:

    For all the men out there who are reluctant to get married (and there are millions of them), this should be the final nail in the marriage coffin: get cold feet, get sued to pay for the wedding anyway.

    Must’ve been a real healthy relationship to begin with, eh?

    • tailspin says:

      Why should she be stuck with all the wedding costs? It was *their* wedding, not *her* wedding.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        You’re a woman aren’t you?

        Every man knows, it’s “her” wedding. And it really, really is.

        • obits3 says:

          I agree. Weddings are *her* day. I don’t care how you spin it, if she changes her dress, then everone else must change too (even if the groom already bought his stuff as I’ve seen happen). This scares me so much. Even if too people love each other, society excuses bad behavior more if the woman is doing it.

        • SonarTech52 says:

          So true, if it were up to guys it would be very simple.

        • Verdant Pine Trees says:

          (rolls eyes). We’re not all like that, you know. I’m the first to criticize women who are, but a lot of us are sensible and want to offer a fun time to our family and friends without breaking the bank.

  28. blinky says:

    She’s a lawyer. ’nuff said.

  29. makreljohnson says:

    The lawsuit will likely be cheaper than divorcing someone so litigious (yes I get it, she’s s lawyer).

    From my point of view, those kinds of tastes make me suspect that her maintenance maintenance would be off the chart, so divorce would be inevitable or at least experience a severely taxing life.

    This is all based off the assumption that she ran the show and he was simply nodding at the “should we / I’m going to / I want” wedding requirements. Best you can do without all the evidence.

  30. Oranges w/ Cheese says:

    I hope, when and if I ever get married, that it doesn’t cost me 1/10th what this lady spent. Seriously, buy a house, not a ceremony O_o

    • obits3 says:

      This. If more people would care about long lasting things (i.e. your home) and less about a day, we might not have had the foreclosure issues we are seeing today.

      • msbask says:

        Why are both of you presuming that this couple couldn’t afford a lavish wedding and a house?

        • obits3 says:

          I was thinking more generally. People can spend what they want, but my feeling is that if you can’t buy your house outright, then you should have a modest wedding.

          • pecan 3.14159265 says:

            I get what you’re saying, but I still see an unhealthy attachment to the idea of ownership. I really don’t care about owning a home. I didn’t then, and I don’t now. We spent what we wanted to on our wedding because we really didn’t want to buy a house anyway. It used to be that when a person got married, they started a family, and owning a home was just the norm.

            Saying “use it for a house” is making the assumption that a person wants to own a house, and that the money would have been used for that if not for a wedding.

            • obits3 says:

              That’s true. I guess you could think of the house as “that thing you both want in the long run.” Questions I would ask before spending big money on a wedding:

              Do you have the money for this wedding or are you financing it (a red flag in my book)?
              Do you have a full 12 month e-fund set up?
              Are your cars paid off? If so, when do you plan on changing cars (1 year vs 5 years down the road)?
              If not a house, will you want a bigger apartment/new furniture?
              Have you paid off your student loans?

              These are just a few. While I think that my wedding will be important, it is just a day. Those who overspend on the wedding without regard for the long term future are like people who buy an expensive home gym, but don’t ever use it. Buying something or event with many $$$ does not guarantee happiness.

  31. Quake 'n' Shake says:

    I’m pretty sure the groom made the correct decision.

  32. Rudiger says:

    If she looked at this objectively as an attorney instead of emotionally I think she would see there is little that could possibly come from this, other than a possible settlement. An engagement ring isn’t a binding contract or marriage to be provided. If she had a contract drafted that included a “runaway groom” clause then she would have some recourse, but I don’t see any sensible reasoning here.

  33. papastevez says:

    This recently happened to me. I didn’t sue. I hope that guy gets held liable for every F*$%ing penny. Part of the judgment should include a kick in the nuts.

    Oh yea… and F*$% that B&^#H!

  34. Nighthawke says:

    Holy hell, 30K for a banquet hall? What was she leasing, United Center Arena?

    This article earned The Spittake Of The Day award, I had to clean my monitor.

  35. NumberSix says:




    You’d think a laywer would know better than to get married in the first place.

  36. bethshanin says:

    looks like he dodged a bullet

  37. jbandsma says:

    I really don’t understand…which is more important? the wedding or the marriage?

  38. ckspores says:

    I got married in Suburban Chicago-and in the same area as the bride was supposed to marry. My wedding was a grand total of $11,000, including the honeymoon, and my husband and I had a kickass wedding.

    I’m really not sure what type of self-absorbed person spends $95,000 just in deposits.

    If he didn’t marry her and has to pay for half, I’d say he got off cheap.

    • ckspores says:

      Oops, nevermind.

      Okay, what kind of self-absorbed asshat spends $95,000 on a wedding? Really? It is a party.

  39. qbubbles says:

    $600 for SHOES??? I wore white sneakers. $45. No one saw them and I was comfy.

  40. Destra says:

    Badass woman. If he was too chicken and childish to call it off before the wedding plans, he needs to pay his part.

    Legally, though, she probably won’t be able to get anymore than half of the cost of the wedding.

  41. sopmodm14 says:

    she its called marriage /wedding insurance

    i think it’ll be hard to enforce a proposal as a contract

  42. brinks says:

    THIS is why I can’t usually stand weddings. Instead of it being about the simple idea of two people deciding to spend the rest of their lives together, it’s about putting on a big, ridiculous production. Pompous show-offs.

    While I think the guy’s a jerk, no one is going to be able to convince me that any of this $100,000 worth of BS was HIS idea.

  43. FilthyHarry says:

    If a guy did this, he’d be called a stalker. Come on lady, no means no!

    Seriously though, it’d be hard to prove intent to cause emotional distress. She’d have to somehow prove he broke off the engagement deliberately to hurt her and not for any other reason.

    Breach of promise is interesting since clearly there was an intent to marry, though again, given its a lawsuit in a court of law, won’t she have to provide some kind of contractual evidence on is part that he intended to go through with it? If you think about it, the marriage ceremony IS the ceremony where the contract is finalized. Depends on how sympathetic to either side the judge/jury is.

    • obits3 says:

      She might be able to argue promissory estoppel/detrimental reliance; however, this would mean proving the he made a clear and definite promise. I’m not sure that such a ruling would be good.

      “Equitable estoppel is distinct from promissory estoppel. Promissory estoppel involves a clear and definite promise, while equitable estoppel involves only representations and inducements. The representations at issue in promissory estoppel go to future intent, while equitable estoppel involves statement of past or present fact. It is also said that equitable estoppel lies in tort, while promissory estoppel lies in contract. The major distinction between equitable estoppel and promissory estoppel is that the former is available only as a defense, while promissory estoppel can be used as the basis of a cause of action for damages.
      —28 Am Jur 2d Estoppel and Waiver § 35″

  44. MickeyMoo says:

    They offer trip cancellation insurance, and we all know what market opportunists the insurance industry can be, so this seems like a situation ripe for the picking by offering some kind of “Wedding Insurance.” Guess it would depend on the math, but the premiums couldn’t be that much… could they?

    • tailspin says:

      Mickey – wedding insurance totally exists. This is a prime example of why. Too many things can go wrong — natural disaster, caterer going bankrupt after taking your deposit, groom with cold feet…

  45. AmPriS says:

    ohh ohh ohh, Breach of a Marital Contract is one of the FEW types of contracts that courts can actually award punitive damages !

  46. satoru says:

    Somewhat amusing for a 21st century woman to invoke a 18th century obsolete tort law, designed to basically ensure the fair ‘trade’ of women between families via marriage, to get some money

    Feel free to use your time machine and see how the courts play out.

  47. sweetgreenthing says:

    I can relate, though I didn’t sue. I was 6 months pregnant and it was 4 weeks before my wedding when the douche called in the middle of the night to say he decided he didn’t want to support a family and wasn’t going to get married. My parents got stuck with all of the non-refundable deposits (which they graciously paid and insisted I not repay them for), I sold my wedding dress on craigslist, and I have never seen a penny in child support from that guy. When I actually got married, we went to the courthouse.
    I hope she gets 50% of what it cost, but no more. She’s going to need that money for some therapy.

  48. Extended-Warranty says:

    This man made a smart decision.

  49. RayanneGraff says:

    Maybe he ran cause he realized he was marrying a spoiled princess who wanted a $100,000 wedding. Hell, I’d run too.

  50. reddfredd says:

    Weddings have become this commercialized monster who prefers to eat the pockets of its unsuspecting victims.

  51. samandiriel says:

    Typo: “claims she pent $30,000”

  52. leemikcee says:

    Wow. Do Consumerist readers hate brides and weddings? If someone has $100,000 to blow on a wedding and chooses to do so, it’s no one else’s business. Yeah, if we had that kind of cash, we’d probably consider our choices for spending it much more reasonable, but it’s not our money.

    At the linked article, it’s noted that the groom-to-be was informing everyone BUT his fiancée that the wedding was off. Nice. Guaranteed method of making sure your soon-to-be-ex-fiancée is truly, deeply, madly angry and hurt… and, in this case, vengeful.

    I’m no fan of bridezillas, either, but sheesh, peeps. This mess took at least two to make.

  53. Verdant Pine Trees says:

    In late, but I want to point out a few things.

    a) He told a lot of people, but not her, that the wedding was off. She learned from other people, confronted him, and he backed off. Then he finally cancelled days before. She was probably on the hook for a lot more money as a result. By the way – this happened to a friend of mine (the BRIDE was the heel in this case and called it off within days). My friend lost more than half his money. Remember also that she may have had to pay for family to come in, to reserve a block in a hotel, etc.

    b) Stereotype alert! Many Italian-Americans have big families, and tradition is very important to them. It is possible that the cost of the wedding had to do with a large number of people being invited. Again, she may have had to pay to reserve a block of rooms, possibly for family members’ air flights, etc.

  54. libwitch says:

    The number of sexist comments in thread are *amazing*. The brides’ parents are supposed to pay for the wedding? That is a tradition, not, a rule, and an old one that – and generally, if the bride and groom are established and making more then the parents, that ain’t gonna happen.

    Looks like groom dodged a bullet? Because the bride shelled out money and wanted some back? What if the groom put the money up? I bet you would all be screaming!

    It was probably all the brides’ idea anyway? I have been the MOH in 5 wedding and for all of them, it was the groom’s families that were pushing for the big wedding, and NO the groom didn’t say word one to them. The brides would have all been happy with something small.

    Man, did we fall into a 1960s timewarp?

  55. jcargill says:

    Just imagine if he went through with it and they got divorced a few years later. She’d really be taking him to the cleaners.

  56. ZacharyTF says:

    About 6 months after my cousin got married, she found out that he was cheating on her with her best friend. He made the stupid mistake of leaving his e-mail account opened on his computer with an incriminating e-mail showing for all the world to see.

    As part of the divorce settlement, he agreed to pay her parents back the money they spent on the wedding.