BigLaw Lawyer Sues for Return of $100K Engagement Ring

By George Khoury, Esq. on October 02, 2018 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

When it comes to wedding engagements, it's not uncommon for big law lawyers to go, well, big. And that's just what one big law associate in D.C. did. Though sadly, things didn't quite work out like he expected.

Acquiescing to his soon to be fiancé's demands for a high quality 3.5 to 5 carat diamond ring, the attorney spent nearly $60K more than his original $40K budget. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) for the pair, the engagement didn't last. However, that wasn't the end of the drama, which is likely to last as long as the loan payments on the $30K loan the attorney took out to be able to purchase the ring, particularly as he's filed a lawsuit seeking the return of the ring, and other financial damages.

BigLaw Begets Big Drama

The story, or facts, are about as juicy and gossipy as any primetime TV drama or dark comedy. The attorney and his now ex-fiancée had moved in together as a matter of convenience initially, but that soon turned into more. The couple then moved into a larger place where they'd be more comfortable with their three dogs. Naturally, Mr. BigLaw paid the $4,800 monthly rent and the utilities. After accepting the engagement ring, things fell apart.

Curiously, the attorney agreed to continue paying for his former fiancée to live in the large apartment while finishing her dissertation for her Ph.D. in art history. As part of the agreement, she would return the $100K ring. More curiously, at some point, the former fiancée decided to back out of the deal, proclaiming that the ring was hers forever.

But that's not where this story ends, she moved out of the apartment without telling anyone, and leaving behind the sort of mess landlords have nightmares about. The apartment was vacant for two months before anyone noticed, and upon entering the apartment, it was discovered that the meat-filled refrigerator had been left unplugged for nearly two months causing a rancid mess and smell throughout the unit, and angry messages had been written on the walls in pen and permanent marker (in addition to other careless damage).

Luckily for the attorney, his landlord took some sympathy on him, and despite the repairs costing more than the nearly $5,000 security deposit, the landlord nevertheless refunded him $1,000. Another stoke of luck may come from the court, as he has filed a lawsuit to recover the ring, and most courts do require engagement rings be returned if the engagement is called off.

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