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Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 41221
Experience:  Multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation and administration.
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My niece got married this past November in a big church ceremony.

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My niece got married this past November in a big church ceremony. They were married one year before by a JP when she found out she was pregnant. One year later they had the big church wedding and an expensive reception put on by her parents. Not even 2 months later hubby left her. He Was having affair with coworker. Family is devastated. Question is can her father sue the ex for the wedding expenses (40K) that came out of his retirement fund. Family feels he committed fraud by going along with ceremony when he knew he was not into the marriage but had new girlfriend in wings who he left with. Is there any chance of recouping expenses? He has a good job as a mechanic. Thanks.

Thank you for your question. I am a Pennsylvania licensed professional. Please permit me to assist you this evening.

To answer your question directly, the father of bride cannot legally pursue the other party for the expenses. Here is why:

Ultimately the choice to pay for the wedding was the father's. If he would have refused to pay the other parties would not have been able to legally compel him to do so. Since the choice to pay was his, so is the risk under the payment. The only potential way he could pursue the other party for the bill would be if that person agreed in writing that the funds were a 'loan' and that he would pay back those funds at a later time. Even if fraud was committed, it was against the daughter and not against the father, which would not permit him under PA law to seek recourse. I wish I had a different answer for you, truly, as I sympathize, but without anything in writing from the husband promising repayment, there are no viable grounds to seek repayment.

Good luck.

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