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Cohabitation offer equates to promise to marry: court

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Published : 2014-03-18 20:58
Updated : 2014-03-18 20:58

Having sex without contraception and implying future cohabitation count as a promise of marriage, a Seoul court said Tuesday.

The Seoul Family Court on March 6 ruled in favor of a female school teacher who filed a compensation suit against her former colleague for giving false hope of marriage and cheating. Both women involved with the defendent became pregnant in March 2012.

The court ordered the man to pay 25 million won ($23,400) to his ex-fiance in compensation.

“It is clear that the victim and her family have greatly suffered from the engagement being cancelled unexpectedly,” judge Choi Jung-in said in the ruling.

According to court documents, the plaintiff started dating the defendant in 2011 while working at the same school.

The judge said there were implications that the defendant promised the plaintiff marriage, such as asking her opinion on purchasing an apartment near their workplace.

“The defendant told the plaintiff in detail about his apartment, including his payment plans and how the apartment could later be used as their home after marriage. Considering that they had sex without contraception, there was an unspoken agreement on their marriage,” the judge explained.

In March 2012, the defendant discovered that his other girlfriend, also a school teacher, was pregnant around the same time as the plaintiff.

After learning of the two pregnancies, the man decided to leave the plaintiff and convinced her to get an abortion, saying he was in poor health and had no money to get married.

The defendant then ended the relationship with the plaintiff and married the other woman with whom he had the child.

After finding about her ex-fianc’s marriage and the child, the plaintiff filed a petition to the Ministry of Education, which ordered the defendant to transfer to another school and docked him one month’s pay.

Not satisfied with the punishment, the plaintiff then filed a suit against the man for breach of promise.

But the court dismissed the plaintiff’s suit against the man’s parents, citing a lack of evidence to prove that they forced the abortion after knowing about the engagement.

By Suk Gee-hyun (monicasuk@heraldcorp.com)

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