Single or married? When can a couple consider themselves married in a traditional sense?

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Having lobola paid is one of the steps to go through before you are traditionally married.
Having lobola paid is one of the steps to go through before you are traditionally married.
PHOTO: GALLO IMAGES/Westend61

Every season is wedding season in South Africa. He's sent the letter to your house, the lobola negotiations are heating up, and pretty soon you'll be a Mrs.

Your family is ready to do a welcoming ceremony for the groom and his negotiators and your makoti outfit are ready for the day his family welcomes you into their fold.

Traditionally there are a lot of steps to the marriage process and each culture does it differently. But at which point of the process are you officially man and wife? This is a debate that's been raging online for a while now and we ask legal and traditional experts about when a customary marriage is officially recognised by the law.

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