It’s cheaper to keep her

Coweta County Georgia resident Christopher Kelley is learning a very valuable lesson in life.  As Johnnie Taylor sang, “It’s cheaper to keep her…”, and Mr. Kelley’s finding out that music and reality can often mirror each other.

From ABC

On Dec. 23, 2004, Christopher Ned Kelley, who works in IT, gave Melissa Cooper a ring valued at about $10,000, a court document states; she accepted and the two moved to a new home. Since 2000, Kelly, had lived with Cooper, who also had a child with him, the filing says.

She says she left her job at his request to stay home and raise their child and her child from a previous relationship, according to a court document.

But after the proposal, she learned that Kelley had been in a two-year relationship with another woman that began before the proposal. After Cooper confronted him, she agreed to stay with him “because of his pledges not to see the other woman again and his promises thereafter to marry Cooper,” the court document states.

But in April 2011, when Cooper confronted him about a relationship with yet another woman, he told her that he wanted to be with that woman and that Cooper and the children should move out.

“Cooper was ‘devastated’ by this development,” the court document stated.

In response, Cooper filed a lawsuit for a number of claims, including fraud and breach of contract to marry. The Coweta County Superior Court awarded her $43,500 and attorney fees of $6,500.

Mr. Kelley’s defense is based on his belief that since he never outright asked her “Will you marry me”, that he’s not on the hook for breach of promise to marry Ms. Cooper.  I hate to break the bad news to you bro, but when you “put a ring on it” and move her into a shared home, the only thing you have not done is signed the marriage certificate in the eyes of most anybody with common sense.

You can’t pull a Peyton Manning in a case like this.  You can’t spend almost seven years under the same house after giving a ring and then audible out of the relationship without some type of pain.  In a sense, you’re lucky that you didn’t move her in before 1997 as Georgia grandfathered common-law marriages that were formed prior to that year.  If you were under that case, not only would you be facing legal fees, but you’d also have to deal with “half” (*NSFW language), as in half of everything you two accumulated during that time frame.

This could have all potentially avoided had you listened to the advice given by Johnnie Taylor…



2 thoughts on “It’s cheaper to keep her

  1. Personally, I think doing away with common law marriages was a mistake. It also brings up what I’ve seen time and time again, when people live together but don’t get married, one thinks they’ll eventually get married and the other has no intention of ever getting married. Of course, that’s their business, if that’s what they want to do. The common law marriage did provide a little legal protection.

    As for this guy, he deserved what he got (and probably more). If one is going to be dumb, one has to be tough. For the lady, choose a little more carefully, next time.


    • I was kinda surprised when I looked up common law marriages at how few states still honor them. I think Alabama’s was seven years when I was growing up, but I could be wrong.

      This guy was/is a complete idiot. If I’m not intending to marry someone, I am not buying them a ring that would give them that impression. Also, I wouldn’t move into a house like a family either. I think he should have had to pay more for just being stupid, but that’s not illegal.


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